First Baptist Church Jackson is a 178-year-old downtown church that has maintained an active college ministry for the past 35 years. Centrally located in the metro Jackson area, there are over 30,000 college students attending school within a 20-mile radius of FBC Jackson. The church reaches several small private colleges, one larger state university, and several community college campuses. There is also a large law school and medical school population within a few miles of FBC Jackson, as well. The college ministry at FBC is led by Steven Smith.
MINISTRY & MISSION
The FBC Jackson College Ministry follows the church’s larger mission, which is to multiply disciples to live like Jesus. Currently there are approximately 200 students involved in small groups and large group gatherings. College students are also involved in other ministries within the church from preschool to international ministry, worship ministry, and missions. There’s a volunteer staff of 20 adults who teach, disciple, and encourage FBC Jackson college students on a weekly basis, plus scores of other adults within the church body who mentor and “adopt” students while they are attending school in Jackson.
One of the biggest challenges for Christian college students is building the personal value of local church involvement into their busy lives and schedules. This is one of the busiest, most stressful times of life, and it’s difficult for college students to make church attendance and involvement a top priority. The FBC Jackson college ministry team believes that as students choose to invest in the life of a local church, they will then grow in appreciation and understanding of what the Body of Christ looks like and how they should function as active leaders among God’s people.
THE LEADERSHIP REWARD
Steven Smith says the most rewarding part of his role as college pastor is to see students discover their true identity in Christ, understand their God-given gifts and calling, and use those gifts to make a difference in the lives of their peers. He loves taking students on mission trips and then watching their world views expand and later carry over into their personal ministry passions back at home.
To learn more about First Baptist Jackson’s College Ministry, visit their website!