Reverend Derrick J. Hughes celebrates his second year at Piney Grove
By Jimmie Davis, Jr.
Jesus instructed his disciples to go out into the highways and byways to make more disciples for God’s kingdom and that’s exactly what the rich legacy of First Baptist Church Piney Grove (FBCPG) has been doing for the last 108 years. Now under the stewardship of Rev. Dr. Derrick J. Hughes the church intends to fulfill that mandate as they continue to grow and encourage the community.
Beginning Thursday, Oct. 18-21, 2012 FBCPG, located at 4699 W. Okld. Pk. Blvd. in Lauderdale Lakes, will be celebrating the Second Pastoral Anniversary of Pastor Hughes beginning at 7:30 p.m. “I’m honored to serve in the capacity as pastor of First Baptist Church Piney Grove,” said Rev. Hughes during a telephone interview. “As we continue to grow, the church will have an impact on the community.”
Several years ago, members of FBCPG were faced with a difficult decision as to relocate or stay in the Dorsey Bend community. The church opted to move because the neighborhood was landlocked and now that FBCPG is in a new neighborhood, they are faced with various challenges.
Hughes says that one of his goals is to reach out to what he describes as the “Joshua Generation”, which is the youth of today. He wants the younger generation to realize and appreciate the ordeals that transpired during the civil rights era, which has afforded them the privileges they have today. “So many individuals have been members here at this church and have a place in history,” he said. “We have to be in transition and combine history with the future.”
Furthermore, Lauderdale Lakes has the second highest concentration of Jamaicans living in the United States. The church has had to become more cultural/ diverse by reaching out to the Caribbean com-munity through the radio station WAVS 1430 on the AM dial.
FBCPG also has plans underway for the making of a medical clinic located in Haiti and Hughes says the building is almost complete and will be open by December 2012.
There will also be a satellite church with a full ministry there as well.
Concerned about the plight of the young Black male Hughes says the dropout rate here in Broward County needs to be addressed and assessed. Therefore, FBCPG is very excited about their endeavors to initiate an all boys Christian academy K-4 in August 2013.
“The church needs to have an influence on our young Black males,” said Hughes. “We need to start mentoring them in the early years.” Dr. Hughes might be new to South Florida, but he’s no new arrival to the pulpit, having been a senior pastor for over two decades before he became the shepherd over FBCPG.
A native of Chicago, Ill., Hughes accepted the “call” to ministry in 1985 and became a preacher in 1988. Rev. Hughes holds a Doctor of Ministry degree from United Theological Seminary. He’s been married to the former Deborah Bryson for 17 years and they have five children together.
Special guests for the pastor’s anniversary include Rev. Alphonso Jackson, Sr. on Thursday night – Rev. Smokie Norful on Friday night and closing out on Sunday morning with Rev. Marvin Mercer, Sr.