Pastor named convention presidentPublished 7:35pm Tuesday, July 15, 2014
A Suffolk pastor has been elected president of the Baptist General Convention of Virginia, an association of about 1,000 historically black Baptist churches in the state.
The Rev. Dr. Steven G. Blunt of First Baptist Church Mahan Street is the youngest president in the organization’s history, Blunt said he has been told. He also was the youngest vice president during his three-year term in that office, which concluded upon his election to the presidency.
“I am immensely honored to have been elected president,” said Blunt, who is 39 and grew up at First Baptist Franklin. “Since I was a kid, I’ve been around the convention.”
Blunt said the convention exists to support entities including Virginia Union University and its Samuel DeWitt Proctor School of Theology, the Children’s Home of Virginia Baptists, the Lott Carey Foreign Missions Convention, the National Baptist Convention USA Inc. and others.
It also aims to “make sure all of our churches are active and that all of our communities are being partnered with,” Blunt said.
The convention has 29 associations that cover different areas of the state.
“You have just about every corner of the state covered,” he said.
“It’s very important to us to remain faithful to our values while celebrating and upholding our Baptist tradition and heritage, which is a challenge in the 21st century,” Blunt added.
His job as president will be to ensure the aims of the convention are being executed during his tenure.
Blunt said his experience as a child growing up in a Baptist church in Virginia instilled in him the value of missions.
“The conference is very serious about kids understanding mission work is about more than inside the four walls of the church,” he said.
“It has not completely sunk in,” Blunt said of his new role. “Pray for me.”
Blunt and his wife, Brandey, have two daughters, Nakari Brynae and Kori Cheyenne. He has been pastor at First Baptist Church Mahan Street since 2002.
He is one of the youngest inductees into the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. National Board of Preachers of Morehouse College in Atlanta. He also is a past vice president of the Suffolk Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance and has been vice chairperson of the Board of Directors for the Suffolk Chapter of the American Red Cross.