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As always we greet you in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. We are very excited about the Western Baptist State Convention’s Annual Session, August 3-8, 2008. Our Annual Session will convene at the Greater Community Missionary Baptist Church under the dynamic leadership of Vice President, Dr. Dudley D. Chatman. Our Theme is “Walking in Victory Through Christ Jesus, 1 John 5:4, 5.
We are extremely thrilled to welcome our Vice President At-Large of the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc., Dr. Julius R. Scruggs. Julius Richard Scruggs was born in Elkton, Tennessee to Reverend and Mrs. Earl Scruggs, Sr. and reared in Toney, Alabama. He is a graduate of Council Training High School in Huntsville. After earning his Bachelor of Arts degree at American Baptist College in Nashville, Tennessee, he also completed requirements for the Master of Divinity (M. Div.) and Doctor of Ministry (D. Min.) degrees at Vanderbilt University School of Divinity in Nashville.
His pastoral experience began at age 18 from Pine Grove Missionary Baptist Church (Harvest, AL) where he served 1960-1965. From 1965-1972, he pastored the Mt. Ararat Baptist Church (Nashville, TN). He continued to follow the Holy Spirit’s call and pastored the Antioch Baptist Church (East Chicago, IN) from 1972 to 1977. Since January 1977 he has been the shepherd of God’s people at First Missionary Baptist Church in Huntsville.
Dr. Scruggs has authored four books: Meditations on the Church, Baptist Preachers with Social Consciousness: A Comparative Study of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Harry Fosdick, God is Faithful, and How to Study and Teach the Bible.
He is a man of deep social consciousness, which is apparent in his contributions to religious and community causes. He is a member of the Board of Trustees at American Baptist College, former member of the Selma University and former President of the Alabama State Missionary Baptist Convention (President Emeritus). Locally, he is a member of the Huntsville Human Relations Commission; member and former president of the Greater Huntsville Interdenominational Ministerial Fellowship (GHIMF); and provides advisory support to a wide range of community movements.
On September 9, 1999, Dr. Scruggs was elected Vice President At-Large of the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc. As a part of a new leadership team, he will help to bring vision, integrity, structure, and accountability to the largest Black church organization in the nation.
His accomplishments have been recognized in “Who’s Who in Religion,” “Outstanding young Men in America,” and “Personalities in America Hall of Fame.” Additionally, he is the 1998 recipient of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Award presented by GHIMF.
Dr. Scruggs is a much sought-after minister for his biblically-based, doctrinally sound, and life-centered preaching and teaching. His servant-leadership style and his personal integrity have molded and shaped the thrust of First Missionary Baptist Church’s Christian Education emphasis, outreach ministry, stewardship commitment, physical growth and spiritual maturity.
During his more than thirty years in the pastorate at First Baptist, the church has initiated witnessing/evangelism teams, jail ministry teams, scholarship funds, and health fitness and recreation ministries. The Christian Education ministry has been enhanced with weekly Bible study for all ages, a Rites of Passage program, and a licensed Child Development Center and Academy serving children age 2-1/2 through fifth grade. The church has acquired the twelve-acre lot on which the church and parsonage are located and the four-phases (Sanctuary, Educational Complex, Family Life Center and Administration/Educational Wing) have been constructed.
More than 4,086 new members have united with the church during Dr. Scruggs’ tenure. He has led the church in giving to Home and Foreign Mission causes annually. The church has built and paid for two houses in partnership with Habitat for Humanity, allocated funds annually to the program, and members of the church have assisted in building twelve other Habitat homes.
But, even more significant than Dr. Scruggs’ many pastoral accomplishments and academic credentials, is his genuine love for the people of God. He is a “tender shepherd” who takes his calling seriously.
He is married to the former Josephine Stewart Tipton and they are the proud parents of a daughter, Jennifer Juliette Scruggs and a son, Morris Errol Tipton, II. They have three grandchildren: Morris E. Tipton, III, Morgan Taylor Tipton, and Elizabeth Francina Scruggs.
Greater Community Missionary Baptist Church is located at 11066 Norris Ave., Pacoima, Ca., (818) 899-9155. We are encouraging each of you to come to the oldest State Convention in the State of California and be a part of this great Session. The Convention needs your prayers and attendance.