Pastor Javier Lopez
Javier Lopez currently serves as the Director of our Hispanic Ministry here at FBCD. The Lord has greatly blessed this ministry to the point where we believe it is time to bring him on our full-time pastoral staff. You can read more about Pastor Javier below.
Join us for a Member's Meeting on January 29 immediately following the morning worship service where we will vote to bring him on.
My name is Javier R. López, and I am honored to be considered as a candidate to become the full-time Pastor of Hispanic Ministry at First Baptist Church Douglasville.
I believe in a multiplying church. In January 2022, Grace and I were impressed by God in our hearts to start a new Hispanic ministry in Douglasville. We didn’t know where, how, or what this calling would mean for our lives and ministry, but He always has a divine plan.
One Sunday after church in April 2022, we planned to have lunch in Austell, but God sent us to Douglasville instead. At the restaurant, we met a couple of former missionaries (Don and Julia Rice) who also had planned to go to a different restaurant but ended up in the same one as us. We not only found out that we share our beliefs as Southern Baptists, but also that our ministries were connected even though we had never met. For example, my mentor and teacher was a missionary in Chile and knew Don and Julia when they served there as missionaries. I preached and taught several times in a Hispanic church at Central Baptist in Douglasville that originally started as a Bible study in the Rice’s basement. And while we were talking, we found out that we had all been praying for a new Hispanic ministry in Douglasville.
I was born in Nicaragua. My parents and my grandparents always taught me about God, and all of my education was in a private Catholic school. At age 16, I received a scholarship to become an engineer in Russia, where I studied for 7 years. I graduated with a master’s degree in engineering and focused on becoming a mining engineer, and I also taught in the university. At the age of 23, I was offered the position of Dean for the engineering faculty at the National University of Nicaragua. I decided to work in the mining industry instead and became the Assessor of the vice-ministry of the mining industry. In 1992, I was invited to join the new geo-thermal project to establish a new source of clean energy for the Central American Region, where I worked for 2 years.
I had a successful secular career but a spiritual emptiness, a career where who your friends were was more important than who you are. I knew very well the story of Jesus Christ, but I did not truly know Him. One of Grace’s cousins came to Nicaragua. He had a successful career as a medical doctor, and he was a Dean in the surgery department of Medicine University. I decided to meet him, so I could meet other important people. I really did not have a clue that this successful doctor was also a successful pastor, who would lead me to surrender all my achievements, honors, and titles, and to find a new and real purpose for the rest of my life in Jesus Christ as my Lord and my Savior.
MY MINISTRY EXPERIENCE
I came to Miami in 1994, and my plan was to be there for only 3 months. The political and economic situation got worse in my country, forcing me to stay in the United States and look for other options for my family. In December 1995, I was invited to visit a friend in Valdosta, Georgia. My plan was to be there for a week, but 27 years later Grace and I are still in Georgia. I was looking for a vacation, but I found a call to join the Spanish First Baptist Church of Valdosta and serve God for the rest of my life.
In 1998, I became a Youth Pastor, and in 1999 I graduated with a “Master Diploma in Pastoral Ministry” sponsored by Brewton Parker College, Shorter College, and Truett-McConnell College. Also, in 1999 my wife and I finished NAMB’s course for Church Planters. In January 2000, I accepted the position of Associate Pastor in evangelism and missions for the Hispanic First Baptist Church of Marietta, where I served until 2003. l left to become a part of the First Baptist Church of Mableton as Associate Pastor for the future Hispanic ministry. In 2004 we started the Hispanic ministry resulting in “1ra Iglesia Bautista de Mableton.” In 2008, it became an independent Southern Baptist Church known as “Iglesia de Mableton”. In 2015, God used us to start the new Hispanic church at Beulah Baptist Church in Douglasville.
For the last 25 years, I have shared the love of Christ serving in different ministries, planting new churches, promoting biblical training, and partnering with the Bible Training Center for Pastors.
I have supported churches in Central and South America by preparing groups and training leaders in these churches. I believe in the mission statement of First Baptist Church Douglasville, that we exist to glorify God by making disciples and proclaiming the gospel throughout the world.
I met my future wife Grace when I was 14 years old. We were neighbors but attended two different schools. She was at the “Christian Baptist School,” and I was at “LOYOLA, Catholic School” and of course we were rivals in everything possible. But God has a plan, and even as our country went into a war, revolution, more war and many other disasters, God kept us alive and close to one another. It’s because of Grace’s faith and her family that I met the Lord.
God blessed us with three sons Daniel (38), Greco (35), and Kevin (who lived 25 years with us, and the last 3 years he has been with the Lord). We have 2 grandchildren, Daniel (15), Irina (13). Kevin and Grace helped me to plant and to lead “Iglesia de Mableton” for over 15 years. Now with the legacy of our son Kevin and the grace of God, we will keep serving the Lord until He calls us home.
MY EXCITEMENT ABOUT THIS OPPORTUNITY
It’s my humble privilege to be considered as candidate to join God’s plan for First Baptist Church Douglasville. I have already witnessed His grace in His church, this community, and the plans to carry the Gospel beyond this area. I’m honored at the possibility of joining this church family. So, I express my commitment to serve God with excellence and love, with integrity and grace, as one family under the leadership of the Senior Pastor.