4th District Missionary Baptist Association of Louisiana Makes Leadership Change

By MARK H. HUNTER, theadvocate.com |  January 15, 2016

Photo by MARK H. HUNTER -- The Rev. Dr. Rene' F. Brown, newly installed president/moderator of the 4th District Missionary Baptist Association of Louisiana, links arms with the Rev. Dr. Isaiah J. Webster, the group's vice president, during services at Mount Zion First Baptist Church in downtown Baton Rouge.RK H. HUNTER -- The pastors of the 4th District Missionary Baptist Association gather at the front of Mount Zion First Baptist Church to lay hands on the group's new president and vice president as outgoing president/moderator the Rev. Dr. Jesse B. Bilberry Jr. prays for them.

 

In 1970, the student journalists of the then-segregated Rosenwald (now Tensas) High School snapped a yearbook photo of their principal holding a baby boy on his lap.

Five decades later, the principal and the baby, now both pastors, shared the platform of Mount Zion First Baptist Church in downtown Baton Rouge as a generational shift in leadership of the Fourth District Missionary Baptist Association of Louisiana took place last week.

“It was Tensas Rosenwald’s last year, and the principal was Rev. Jesse Bernard Bilberry,” the Rev. Dr. René F. Brown, 50, told a packed sanctuary on Saturday evening. “Before integration, there was a school for African-Americans in St. Joseph. He was the principal, and I was that baby in the book.”

“So for the little baby to grow up and to succeed the principal, who his parents worked for, who educated his aunts and uncles and relatives, now I can stand here and say ‘thank you,’ ” Brown said, turning to Bilberry, the group’s 86-year-old outgoing president/moderator. The crowd erupted in applause.... Read More

Back