A Detailed History of our Pastors

Dr. Eddie Chennault

Dr. Eddie Chennault accepted the pastorate of Temple Baptist effective January 8, 1989. Brother Eddie has brought an exciting time to Temple. He was instrumental in developing the Christian Life Center. Monies from the “Together We Build” program were used to provide the funds necessary to start building the CLC. The CLC provided the space for a much-needed auditorium in addition to providing classrooms for the youth. Also, the CLC provided room for an after school program for elementary children. Our prayers are that the Lord will continue to bless Temple with growth and service to Him through the leadership of Dr. Chennault.

Brother Charles McLain

Brother Charles McLain was called as pastor January 15, 1984. He and the Long-Range Planning Committee recognized the need for a new sanctuary and additional Sunday School space. The church adopted a program called “Together We Build” as the vehicle to be used to raise funds for the new buildings. This program raised approximately $350,000.00. This money grew in several years to approximately $450,000.00. Temple experienced growth spiritually and numerically during his pastorate. Brother McLain resigned on May 8, 1988.

Rev. Bob Rutherford

Rev. Bob Rutherford was called February 2, 1975. He resigned April 4, 1983. He was pastor during a time of economic growth in Gainesville. The National Supply Co. employed about 1,600 people. Linda Jo Shoe Co. employed several hundred people. These were the major employers in Gainesville. Brother Rutherford was a dynamic preacher and Temple enjoyed a period of sustained growth. There were two construction projects during his pastorate. These two infrastructures concluded our construction at that time. The facilities were great and greatly increased the quality of services that Temple could offer to members. Church members pledging funds under the “Together We Build Program” paid for these two structures. Brother Rutherford stated, “The people who make up Temple Baptist Church are a unique group of Christians. The fellowship here is one of the warmest that Linda and I personally have ever experienced.”

Pastor Bob Garsee

Bob Garsee was called as pastor of Temple Baptist Church on August 30, 1971. He was an excellent preacher and delivered some of the best messages to ever come from the pulpit of Temple. Brother Garsee submitted his resignation effective September 15, 1974.

Pastor Billy W. Skinner

Billy W. Skinner accepted the call as pastor of Temple on July 31, 1966. He resigned on August 29, 1971. Pastor Skinner’s message to the church: “Greetings in the name of the Lord. We at Temple Baptist Church would like to extend to every person in Gainesville a warm welcome to our church. We are twelve years old and located in a prominent section of the eastern part of the city. We like to think that in a small way we are doing the will of the Lord through proclamations of the gospel, missionary outreach, and teaching of the Bible revelation. We have a fully organized Sunday School with departments and classes for all ages from nursery through adults. We have a very fine Women’s Missionary Union, Girls Auxiliary, and Sunbeam Band for the small children. Our Wednesday evening service is truly a “prayer service”. We have a short devotional and then breakup into prayer groups where we seek God’s will for our lives and the advancement of the kingdom of God. We are a friendly church with a sincere desire that we will be used of God to be a blessing to all who enter the doors of the house of God. We extend to each of you a warm welcome to worship and serve God with us here at Temple.”

Rev. Hughey Welch

Rev. Hughey Welch accepted the call of Temple Baptist Church on October 25, 1964. Rev. Welch is a native of Lufkin, Texas. He has attended the University of Houston and will further his Seminary work at Southwestern Baptist in Fort Worth. He has served churches in East Texas and moves here from Mineral Wells, Texas where he was pastor of the Lawn Terrace Baptist Church. Rev. Welch resigned November 13, 1966 to accept a call from the First Baptist Church of Nocona, Texas.

Rev. James Carter

Rev. James Carter accepted the call as pastor on February 1, 1961. Carter’s Calling Card: “I read recently of an old potter who was shaping clay into the desired shape by his hands. A visitor asked him “Why don’t you have machinery to do that?” The old man replied, ”We tried all kinds of machinery and failed, somehow it needs the human touch.” “How expressive this is of the work we try to do for God. Somehow it needs the human touch. The human touch is of kindness. It is the touch of interest. It is the touch of genuine concern. It is the touch of love. The human touch expresses the fact that even though the church is God’s installation, it’s work is carried out by people. And people are what the church is trying to reach and enlist to win to Christ and to track in Christian service. The ministry of the church is a ministry to people. For these reasons, the human touch is extremely important.” “The human touch is seen in your willingness to visit others for the church. Some of those you visit may be sick, others maybe a little upset, some may have missed church recently, and some may need salvation. The human touch shows that you are interested in them. The human touch is seen in your willingness to help others in their times of trouble and difficulty. It may be a small act, but it shows you care. The human touch is seen in your acceptance of a place of responsibility and service in the church. You are showing that your concerns reach to the point of actually serving Christ. Friendliness, thoughtfulness, love, concern. This the human touch. It must have the human touch for the ministry of the church to be effective.” Dr. Carter tendered his resignation on May 28, 1964 and accepted the pulpit of the First Baptist Church in Natchitoches, Louisiana.

Rev. Hubert Long

Rev. Hubert Long came on field for Temple, August 12, 1956, and resigned as pastor of Temple effective November 20, 1960. He accepted the pastorate of the Waddill Street Baptist Church in McKinney, Texas on November 20, 1960.