Church getting new leader on Easter Sunday

Published 12:01 am Saturday, March 22, 2008

NATCHEZ — For Doug Broome, sermons should convey not just what the Bible said, but what it is saying by bringing its lessons from the past to the present for the future.

Broome is the new pastor at First Baptist Church Natchez, and his first sermon is Easter Sunday.

The process began seven months ago and just this week Broome moved to Natchez from Yazoo City where he served as the senior pastor.

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He said he has several goals for First Baptist.

“My primary goal is to help people with their walk with their Lord,” he said.

He wants his sermons to be “personal and practical.”

This is especially important to him, as it’s what drove him to become a pastor.

He began a career as a dental equipment technician for the University of Mississippi School of Dentistry.

He said his calling stemmed from his frustration in church.

“I knew I needed to be in church but I didn’t enjoy it,” Broome said. “Christian life is something to be enjoyed, not merely endured; the same with worship.”

He found the sermons didn’t speak to him on a personal level and were irrelevant.

He said it was then that God spoke to him, telling him to share his words in a relevant way.

He returned to school where he received degrees from Clarke College and Mississippi College and then attended New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary where he received his Master of Divinity and a Doctorate of Ministry.

Broome would also like to start a strong focal group for young adults in their 20s and 30s.

He said this is a pivotal age to target people while they are in their childbearing and rearing years.

He said he’d also like to break a sometimes common mold churches unintentionally fall into.

“Churches (sometimes) focus on tradition instead of people’s needs,” he said.

He’s open to new methodologies and said he really just wants to focus on the congregation.

“One of the fallacies I see in the modern church is it equates success with how many people come to the church,” Broome said. “It’s better to gauge how many people coming out of the church are making a difference in the community.”

Other than his most recent job in Yazoo City, he also served as senior pastor in Brookhaven and Waynesboro.

For Broome, moving to Natchez is a bit of a homecoming.

“I was born here but (my family) moved when I was 3 weeks old,” he said.

However, he has visited Natchez on several occasions and has always enjoyed it.

“I had no idea at the time that God would send me here to serve as pastor,” he said.

The city has been very welcoming since he moved here.

“It’s a real hospitable city,” he said.

With his first week in town being Holy Week, Broome has been inundated with visiting pastors from other churches, as well as many church members.

Broome is not only spiritually active but also physically.

He enjoys biking, running and weight lifting.

“Our bodies are a temple of the Holy Spirit and we need to take care of them,” he said.

He has also participated in many running events and around eight triathlons.

In his spare time he trains high school girls in track.

“It’s strictly volunteer,” he said.

He began this side activity three years ago with just one girl he was training, but with his success with her, the demand grew.

His wife, Gwenette, remains in Yazoo City as the head tennis coach at Manchester Academy.

Broome said she wants to wait until tennis season is over before she makes the move to Natchez.

“Our desire is not just to plug into the church but the community as well,” Broome said.

Broome and his wife have a son, Bradley, 22, who currently resides in Jackson.