Every Friday, Baptist Women in Ministry introduces an amazing woman minister, and today, we are pleased to introduce you to Sharyn Dowd.
Shayrn, tell us about your ministry journey? Where are you serving now and where have you served previously?
Currently, I am pastor for caring and serving ministries at First Baptist Church, Decatur, Georgia. I oversee pastoral care, missions, and adult formation (ages 18-60 . . . we have a senior adult minister). From 2004 to 2008, I served as ministry associate for neighborhood outreach at Calvary Baptist Church in Waco, Texas, while also teaching Bible at Baylor University. I taught at Baylor from 1999-2008. From 1987-1999, I taught New Testament and Greek at Lexington Theological Seminary, Lexington, Kentucky. I served on staff at First Baptist Church Winston-Salem, North Carolina from 1966-1972 doing urban ministry.
What have been some of the challenges you have faced in your ministry journey?
The hardest thing is always pushing the envelope, getting folks to try doing things differently, predicting how people will react to proposals (impossible). When a church is in a situation in which it needs to make rapid changes or die, congregational governance can be used as a tool to block initiatives.
What do you love best about your ministry position?
I love doing ministry with people–hospital visiting, counseling, planning and doing missions with others, teaching and preparing to teach.
What is the best ministry advice you have ever received?
Ronald Rice, my mentor in the early years of my ministry taught me, “It is easier to get forgiveness than permission.”