CANTON — Cliff Pace recently became the 16th senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Canton. His first official day in the church’s pulpit in his new role came on Christmas Eve Day.
Voted unanimously to the pastorate on Nov. 5, Pace previously served for ten years as senior pastor of Hernando Baptist Church in Hernando, MS. He brings 21 total years of pastoral experience to FBC Canton.
“I am both humbled and honored that God has called me to serve at First Baptist Canton,” he said. “My family and I already love the church and the people we have met. Cherokee County is a beautiful area, and I am certain God has great things ahead, not only for our church, but for the entire county and beyond.
“I believe God has brought me here to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, and that is my mission.”
Live out the message
Following the truths in the Bible brings the gospel to life in the community, he added. “The local church is to represent Christ in the world. We share his message of reconciliation, and we live out that message in a tangible way by submitting to the authority of Scripture.”
That submitting to Jesus begins with himself. Pace cites Galatians 2:20 as his favorite verse. “’I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.’
“The truth of this scripture both humbles me and motivates me. It gives me strength and encouragement when all else fails.”
Pace holds a Master of Divinity degree from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. And currently, he’s closing in on completion of his doctorate in expository preaching. His wife, Tracy, and three children join him in Canton.
“Pastor Cliff is one of the warmest, most kindhearted people I have ever met, in addition to being a gifted preacher and administrator,” said Don Waterhouse, chairman of the Pastor Search Committee. “Our church family already loves him and his family, and we couldn’t be happier. God has been our guiding light throughout the pastor search process, and we believe He has great things in store for First Baptist Canton.”