TAMPA—Tampa pastor Paul Purvis will be nominated as the 2021-22 Florida Baptist State Convention president when the meeting convenes in Lakeland, Nov. 8-9, according to Alan Brumback, lead pastor of Central Baptist Church in Sanford.
Purvis is lead pastor of Mission Hill Church, having served there for the past decade. Under his direction, the church’s name was changed from First Baptist Church of Temple Terrace to better reach the community. The church has grown from a single location in Temple Terrace, to a multi-neighborhood church with three locations.
During the past decade, Mission Hill has baptized over 1,000 people.
As a multicultural and multiethnic church, each week over 65 nations are represented in the congregation and services are translated into three languages. In addition, Mission Hill has recently started a Spanish service that meets once a month at the Lake Carroll Campus.
Brumback said Purvis is expected to be nominated in Lakeland by Jimmy Scroggins, pastor of Family Church in West Palm Beach.
As a younger pastor in the convention, Brumback said Purvis has been a tremendous encourager and example to him. “He has personally taken time to invest, support and help myself and so many others in our state and around the world. He has impeccable integrity, a heart for God, love for others and the nations. His church, Mission Hill, is a model of multiethnic ministry for our state. I needed a Paul in my life and God sent me Paul Purvis.”
Willy Rice, lead pastor of nearby Calvary Church in Clearwater, said Purvis has “a shepherd’s heart and is Kingdom minded. He cares about churches and pastors throughout our network and has invested his time and energy in serving others. He has a great church that demonstrates rock solid theological conviction and focused mission lived out in a multi-cultural context that typifies our state.”
Purvis has been heavily invested in denominational work having previously served as a member of the Florida Baptists’ State Board of Missions, president of the Florida Baptist Pastors’ Conference, treasurer of the Sothern Baptist Pastors’ Conference, and moderator for the Tampa Bay Baptist Association.
Having grown up in a Southern Baptist pastor’s home, Purvis said he “had the joy of being around our faith family my entire life. Our passion for the lost, commitment to missions, and partnership for the gospel positions us to make a Kingdom impact in these strategic days.”
He has been involved with Florida Baptists for the past three decades. “I have seen the uniqueness of our convention both up close and from a distance. If God allows this opportunity for service, I desire to keep us focused on the main things. God has brought the world to our doorsteps in Florida. Our commitment to the Great Commission and the Great Commandment allows us to make a strategic Kingdom difference for His glory.”
If elected as FBSC president, Purvis said hopes to help young leaders get involved in the convention’s work; increase the diversity of Florida Baptists and encourage pastors in the state, “strengthening them for the journey and enabling them to finish well.”
Noting that “Florida Baptists are making great strides in church planting,” Purvis urged that commitment to continue, while revitalizing existing churches.
“Historically, some of the flagship churches in our denomination have been a part of the Florida Baptist Convention. As we come alongside existing churches assisting them for the purpose of revitalization, that will continue to be the case for many years to come.”