Our Pastor

Our Pastor

Dr. Major Lewis Jemison, Pastor

MAJOR LEWIS JEMISON, D. Min
Senior Pastor, St. John Missionary Baptist Church

PROFESSIONAL MINISTRY OVERVIEW

Dr. M. L. Jemison serves as the Senior Pastor of St. John Missionary Baptist Church (Oklahoma City, OK), providing spiritual leadership and pastoral care for a congregation of ~2,500 members.  He also functions as the church’s Chief Executive and Chief Operating Officer, with administrative and fiscal responsibility for 7 full-time staff, 13 part-time staff, numerous committed volunteers, an annual budget in excess of $ 1.5 million and property holdings valued at ~ $6.0 million.  As St. John’s Senior Pastor, Dr. Jemison also serves as CEO of the St. John Christian Heritage Academy, a private, accredited Christian school serving students in pre-kindergarten through the sixth grade.  Dr. Jemison first came to St. John in 1984 as Assistant to the Pastor, later serving as Co-Pastor with Rev. Dr. Walter K. Jackson, and becoming Senior Pastor in 2003.

Dr. Jemison was licensed in the Gospel Ministry (1974) and Ordained (1982) at the Concord Baptist Church (Dallas, TX) by the late Dr. E. K. Bailey. 

In 2006, Dr. Jemison completed a historic four-year term as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc an association of approximately 2,000 Baptist churches throughout the world with a collective membership of more than 2.5 million persons. As President of PNBC, Dr. Jemison provided exceptional leadership related to the convention’s involvement in, advocacy and support of a number of civic issues and concerns, especially those directly related to the plight of African Americans and our brothers and sisters on distant shores.  Dr. Jemison previously served PNBC as 1st Vice President on the local level and as President of the Southwest Region, later moving to 2nd Vice President and 1st Vice President of the national body before being elected President in 2002.  

EDUCATION AND TRAINING

  • Harvard University School of Divinity (Cambridge, MA), Certificate, 1994
  • Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (Kansas City, MO), Doctor of Ministry Degree, 1990
  • Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University (Dallas, TX), Master of Theology Degree, with special emphasis on Church Ministries, Pastoral Care & Counseling, 1982
  • Timberlawn Psychiatric Hospital ( Dallas, TX)  Certified Psychiatric Counselor, 1979
  • Bishop College (Dallas, TX),  Bachelor of Arts Degree in Religion & Philosophy, with emphasis on Church Ministries & Pastoral Care, 1977

SELECTED AFFILIATIONS  AND RECOGNITIONS

  • Member, Martin Luther King Jr. Board of Preachers, Morehouse College, Atlanta, GA.
  • Member, Board of Trustees, Langston University, Oklahoma City, OK and Tulsa, OK Campuses
  • Member, Board of Trustees, Georgetown College, Georgetown, KY
  • Former Vice President for Civil Rights and Church Development, Rainbow/PUSH Coalition
  • Former National Director, One Thousand Churches Connected Initiative, Rainbow/PUSH Coalition
  • Executive Board Member, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), State of Oklahoma
  • Lifetime Member, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)
  • Executive Board Member, Oklahoma City Branch, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)
  • 2nd Vice President, Baptist Ministerial Alliance and Chairman, Oklahoma City Simultaneous Revival
  • Member, Concerned Clergy for Spiritual Renewal (CCSR)
  • Executive Board, Oklahoma City Branch of the Urban League
  • Member, Commission on International Affairs, World Council of Churches
  • Executive Board, Baptist World Alliance
  • Executive Board, Baptist Joint Committee
  • Honorary Doctor of Divinity Degree, Jackson Theological Seminary, Shorter College, Little Rock, Arkansas
  • Honorary Doctor of Divinity Degree, Richmond Virginia Seminary, Richmond, Virginia
  • 33rd Degree Mason
  • Member, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity
  • Graduate, Leadership Oklahoma City, Adult Signature Class XXIII and Member, LOKC Alumni Association
  • Member, Governor’s Marriage Initiative Board
  • Member, Youth Council, Governor’s Workforce and Economic Development Board
  • Member, Oklahoma City Park & Recreation Commission
  • Member, Oklahoma City Rotary Club
  • Member, Historic Skirvin Hotel Restoration Committee

OTHER

Dr. Jemison has been married to his college sweetheart, the former Jacqueline Renee Norris, for more than 40 years and they are the proud parents of one son, MaKinsley, a 2008 graduate of Georgetown College in Kentucky. 

The theme “Building Better Bridges For Ministry”, is an ongoing philosophy and an ideology that serves as the motivating thrust behind Pastor Jemison’s ministry.