October 28th, 2015 -- Ramsbury, Nevis, October 27, 2015 Pastor Eric Maynard, who founded the Shiloh Baptist Church 41 years ago, last Sunday, October 25, handed over his pastoral duties to his first born son, Pastor Wayne Maynard, at a ceremony held at the church.
The ceremony was witnessed by among others, church members, guests, the Deputy Premier, Hon. Mark Brantley, Hon Hazel Brandy-Williams Assistant Minister for Ministry of Social Development in Nevis, Nevis Island Administration officials, the area’s Member of Parliament, Hon. Robelto Hector.
An eminent Caribbean Christian leader , Pastor David Murphy called on Shiloh congregation to embrace the new pastor and his wife. He described the transfer of leadership from Pastor Maynard to his son as a significant and historical phase in the life of the Shiloh Baptist Church, “With this transition, a new chapter in Shiloh Baptist Church begins.”
He spoke of the challenges that are likely to occur during the transition period, “Transitions are difficult, because human nature resists change. People prefer the status quo and people are comfortable with traditions. People love the old order. They cling tenaciously to the past. There are power centers in every church…power centers will resist any kind of change.”
While some people resist change others, he said feel it is a sacred duty to keep the status quo and follow up in the tradition of the old pastor. He said one way to create synergy is for the entire church to cooperate with a new pastor so that he can advance the kingdom of God in the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis and the world at large.
He reminded his audience that even in church, there ought to be mechanisms that ensure that leaders do not have absolute power. There must be checks and balances, he said. “Pastors are not kings. They are not Caesars. Pastors are servants.”
Pastor Murphy described the work of a pastor as very challenging and said a pastors were on call 24 hours responding to needs of members of their congregations and preparing sermons, “When you are sleeping, we are burning the midnight oil.” He said it was impossible for pastors to be effective if they do not receive a divine call. A prayerful pastor, he said, can overcome challenges posed by the vocation.
A call to ministry, he said is God ordained and not initiated by a man, a committee or a congregation. “Ministry is not a political process. It is not a popular contest. It is not a personal conquest. It is a divine process,” he said and pointed out that there were many people who are in ministry without receiving a call from God.
In an interview, Pastor Maynard, confirmed that he was not retiring from preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ but was officially relinquishing his pastoral duties to his son. He thinks very highly of his son. Pastor Maynard said his son believes in excellence. “He does not accept mediocrity. He is very efficient, striving for excellence.”
He said his son has been called into ministry at a time when social media involvement keeps many young people from concentrating on the word of God. But he was optimistic that Wayne would face up to the challenge. Pastor Wayne is a computer programmer.
Wayne relocated to the United States in 1995 to pursue his studies. He often visited his home island and kept in touch with the emerging issues in St. Kitts and Nevis and the Caribbean region. He is married to Shennetter from Antigua and they have two children.
Even though becoming a Born Again Christian was his individual decision as a youth, he said his parents created an enabling environment that made him grow in his faith. “They gave us a solid foundation in our Christian walk.”
In recent years, Pastor Wayne and his wife have felt a burden to come back to the Caribbean . They are particularly concerned about the decline of youth’s morality, spirituality and faithfulness to God. They are optimistic that God will use them to create a positive impact.
Pastor Maynard is concerned about certain issues in the society as he hands over pastoral duties to Wayne. “I would like to see people in the church being faithful, being consistent and more obedient to the word of God. People give more head to word of God and their own spiritual being.”
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