Newsjournal of the Baptist State Convention of Michigan | May 2023 | Volume 67, Number 5
UNITY: THE MICHIGAN AFRICAN AMERICAN FELLOWSHIP
Tony Lynn - State Director of Missions
DETROIT, MI – On a chilly Sunday evening in January, the Michigan African American Fellowship (M.A.A.F.) gathered at the Temple of Faith Baptist Church in Detroit, Michigan. As the crowd grew, they fanned themselves with programs to lessen the heat generated from the full sanctuary. Dr. Stan Parker, President of the M.A.A.F. made the listener’s hearts tremble when he said, “The enemy of unity is lukewarmness,” citing Revelation 3:15-17. His message was impassioned and clear. Displaying a thermometer and a thermostat side by side, Dr. Parker asked, “Are you going to be a thermometer responding to your circumstance or a thermostat creating a situation that brings honor to God?”
Earlier that evening, the crowd stood to its feet in applause, recognizing Pastor Rochelle Davis who said, “I joined the Michigan Southern Baptist Convention back in 1966 when it wasn’t the popular thing to do. But it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done.” Pastor Davis added, “We’ve come a long way since 1966, but we still have a ways to go.”
That same evening, a younger generation of bold men was introduced to the fellowship. Stephen Murphy, a church planter candidate, Pastor Darryl Gaddy, a church planting catalyst, and Pastor Jason Robinson, a church planting catalyst candidate, were welcomed with cheers as BSCM Executive Director/Treasurer, Tim Patterson announced their larger places of service within the Baptist State Convention.
Patterson, joined by his wife Sabrina, Pastor Mike Durbin, the State Director of Evangelism, and Dr. Tony Lynn, the State Director of Missions had been invited by Pastor Parker and Pastor Davis to participate in the service. As the three men later discussed the evening’s impact, Patterson summarized it well saying, “I wish more people could have heard what Pastor Parker and Pastor Davis said. We need more men like them who will stand up for the Kingdom of God and punch holes in the darkness. Their courage is remarkable.”
It was a good moment to be together, worshipping the Lord. God was lifted high and all the strife and problems in the world faded away for a time. "And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near." Hebrews 10:25 NLT
(Photos courtesy Michael Cadwell, Sr.)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Tony Lynn is the State Director of Missions for the Baptist State Convention of Michigan. Before coming on staff at the BSCM, Tony served as lead pastor for more than six years at Crosspoint Church in Monroe, Michigan. He and his wife, Jamie, also served with the International Mission Board in Africa and in Europe.