Rainbow Baptist Church celebrates pastor

For the 12,410th time, Pastor Kenneth Wayne Jones took the podium on July 10, and the church people celebrated the Word as it is written in the King James Bible. Rainbow Baptist Church, in Aberdeen, is an independent Baptist church that does not follow mainstream religion. 

Pastor Jones said when he visited the church for consideration of serving at age 27, it had been without a pastor for five years. Area pastors warned him to reconsider, and community members told him and his wife horror stories.

“So, we’re staying in Fayetteville, right?” Pastor Jones said about his wife, Shelly’s, reaction to the stories.

But Pastor Jones said, “No. The church needed me,” and he has stayed for 34 years.

“The Nichols family is the only family that has stayed as long as I have,” Pastor Jones said about “fighting hell by the acre.”

Pastor Jones explained it was a miracle he stayed because, on average, a Baptist minister stays only two years at a church.

“They leave because of the people,” Pastor Jones said, but he said people problems are job security, and he had to love them all and not quit.

Pastor Jones’ son, Adam Jones, preached for nearly two hours on I Corinthians 15:57-58.

“It’s my dad’s favorite,” Adam said as he read. “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

There were about 75 people in the church.

Rainbow Baptist Church celebrates its pastor

Rainbow Baptist Church’s congregation visits in the aisle on July 10, 2022.

Pastor Jones and Adam both called out people by name. They addressed family and faith issues and joys.

“In Hollywood, heaven is a fog, but when we get there, life on Earth will be like a dream because the hope (we had on Earth) will be real,” Adam said about verse 37.

Pastor Jones Shelly have seven children and five grandchildren who attend Rainbow Baptist Church.

Adam said the Bible word for faith is perseverance.

Pastor Jones said he was a high school dropout who had to take remedial English to begin his education. He described himself as a long-haired hippie, smoking, not worth his salt and not worth killing.

“I know it’s true because my daddy told me so,” Pastor Jones said about answering God’s call to minister at age 18.

He was raised in Red Branch and was saved at Central Baptist Temple in Sanford. He earned his bachelor’s in theology from Tennessee Temple University.

Aberdeen Rainbow Baptist Church celebrates pastor

Granddaughter Leena Jones, Pastor Kenneth Wayne Jones and wife Shelly Jones enjoy the community lunch July 10, 2022.

The sermon was followed by a community lunch in the fellowship hall. The offerings included fried chicken, hamburger patties and gravy, green beans, squash casserole, pasta dishes, fatback, summer vegetables, cornbread, and desserts, including “heavenly” coconut cake.

Feature photo: Pastor Kenneth Wayne Jones welcomes the congregation July 10, 2022, at Rainbow Baptist Church at 702 Saunders Avenue in Aberdeen.

~Article and photos by Sandhills Sentinel Journalist Stephanie M. Sellers. Contact her at [email protected]

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