Charles Michial “Mike” Holloway
Charles Michial “Mike” Holloway
Pastor at Cook Baptist in Ruston
FAMILY: Born in Monroe, he was saved when he was 8-years-old at Bethel Baptist in West Monroe. Married in May of 1981 to Dawn, the couple have two children – 24-year-old Candace Dawn Rodriguez and 21-year-old Charles Matthew.
EDUCATION: Graduated from University of Louisiana at Monroe with a B.A., New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary with a M.Div. and Mid-America Seminary with a D. Min.
EXPERIENCE: In the past 23 years, Holloway has pastored four churches in Louisiana – Highland Park Monroe, First Marion, Unity Cotton Valley, Cook Ruston. He has been at Cook Baptist since October 2005. He also is serving as the evangelism director of the Concord-Union Association, but has served in every possible position in the association, including moderator. From 1992-98 he served on the Louisiana Baptist Convention Executive Board, and while there was a chairman of the budget committee (1996-98) and vice president (1997-98). He also has served on the NOBTS Board of Trustees from 1992-98.
PRESENTATION STATEMENT: “I believe you will find that Dr. Holloway brings strong, proven leadership to Louisiana Baptists. I have personally known Mike for 20 years and I count it a great privilege to nominate him to lead our Convention,” wrote Randy Harper, pastor of Bellaire Baptist in Bossier City in presenting him.
Why have you agreed to allow your nomination for convention president?
First let me say that I certainly was not seeking this position because just like the other pastors in this state I did not need any other responsibilities. Over the past few months I was asked by a number of other Louisiana Baptist pastors to consider allowing my name to be placed into nomination for president. I must admit that I don’t feel worthy to be in such a position but yet at the same time I have always promised our Lord that if He has something for me to do then I am willing to serve. I spent time praying and asked the Lord to confirm His direction for me and when people kept coming to ask me to allow my name to be nominated I began to wonder if this must be the will of God. So I felt if I were going to be available for this position then the church I pastor should sense God’s leading about this matter and support this action. I went before my deacons and asked them to pray about it and then the whole church body and they were very supportive. They said if God was leading this way in my life then they must not stand in His way.
If elected, what will be your primary focus as convention president?
There are two areas of concern God has placed on my heart as of now. The first is missions and evangelism! Evangelism must be the priority of the church because it is the only thing the church does that can’t be done after we are taken to heaven. I have a passion for missions and seeing more churches involved personally in mission work. Obviously I support the Cooperative Program and the wonderful work being done through our mission boards but also believe that each church can put their hands on some type of mission work for the Lord, whether it is local, state or international projects. I am currently working with a task force of the LBC to help establish a stronger mission’s structure that will appeal to our churches across this state. A second concern is cooperation between the churches and not competition. Over my 23 years in the pastorate I have seen too much competition and not enough working together to exalt Jesus and build up the Kingdom of God. The Acts 1:8 Challenge is a perfect way to address both the missions and Kingdom mindset that we need right now. We must be about the work of our Father in heaven and not work to build up our own kingdom on earth!
What are your thoughts on the issue of declining baptisms in our convention? How would you address the issue?
I still believe evangelism works. If you study the characteristics of growing churches today you will find that they have an active, aggressive outreach program. They do not hide their faith! The Gospel of Jesus Christ is still powerful enough to convict the lost and will not return void. Yet the Bible refers to the Gospel as seed and not enough churches are sowing that seed in a deliberate, intentional process and then praying for God to bring about a great harvest. I like the simultaneous revivals we used to have where the whole state would work together to reach our state during a one month period of time. I love using media to promote the Gospel and our evangelistic efforts, but I would especially encourage good old fashion hard work. Nothing will substitute knocking on doors and loving people to Jesus.
What percentage of undesignated receipts does your church give to the Cooperative Program? How would you approach promotion and support of the CP?
Our church gives 9 percent of their undesignated gifts to the Cooperative Program. That decision was made before I arrived here and the purpose was to do more to help fund the salaries of associational directors of missions and I would like to see it back at 10 percent as soon as possible. We have increased our percentage we give to Southern Baptist mission causes to a total of 15 percent of our total undesignated gifts.
Offer a brief statement about your theology, including your view of the Bible.
I am a conservative that has no problem saying that I believe and preach that the Bible is the inerrant, infallible Word of God. I believe that is the theology of most all of our Louisiana Baptists and should be what is taught in our institutions. If by my theology, you are asking am I a Calvinist then the answer is NO, yet I do see and understand the doctrine of election that is taught in scripture. I believe man can do nothing to save himself and God is sovereign in His work of salvation.
How would you describe your support of Louisiana Baptist Convention agencies?
I have been a Louisiana Baptist since before I was born and eight years before I got saved. I was raised in Louisiana Baptist churches my whole life. My father was a deacon and my mother was always in the choir or helping lead the music and worship. My father has served on the Executive Board of the LBC and on the North American Mission Board of Trustees while my mother has served on the Committee on Nominations in our state. I was licensed and ordained in LBC churches and have been the pastor of four churches here. My life and my heart are in the LBC. I served on our Executive Board from 1992 to 1998 and chaired the budget committee of that board from 1996-1998. I was Vice-President of the Executive Board from 1997-1998. I have served in every imaginable position in the local association from moderator to evangelism director, which is my current position in the local association. I served on the Board of Trustees for the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary from 1992-1998. I love and support the work of our Executive Director and this state convention and I believe the President of this convention should be actively involved in this state. I have never missed a Louisiana Baptist Convention annual meeting while I was a pastor in this state. I fully support the work of our agencies and the institutions of the LBC. I support the work of our Boards of Trustees for each institution or agency. I am very excited about the new direction of Louisiana College and the solid conservative leaders God has placed over the college. Each agency and institution should reflect the direction, desire and theology of Louisiana Baptists because they are to work as representatives of our convention. They must not be out promoting a direction or theology that is different from the vast majority of churches in our convention.
What do you see as the greatest challenge facing Louisiana Baptists at this time?
I think I revealed it in my priorities. We must learn how to better work together to build up the Kingdom of God and each church must commit to go the second mile in the areas of evangelism and missions. As we move our vision outward to the world we will stop being so inward focused and stop finding fault with each other. We must stop funneling all our resources on our own comforts and think about a lost world in need of the Savior.
What would you like Louisiana Baptists to know about you that may not have been addressed.
My faith is alive and my passion is to see the salvation of the lost. It is not acceptable to see almost 12,000 churches in the SBC not baptizing even one person during a year. I not only believe each church can be involved in mission work but have been personally involved in missions. In the last 15 years I have been involved in missions in South Louisiana, New Mexico, El Salvador, The Netherlands, Belgium, Ukraine, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Kazakhstan, where our church has adopted a city. We must rekindle the passion for Jesus Christ and hear His calling again for our ministries. My desire would be to do whatever I can to help our LBC strengthen and develop our vision to reach our state, our nation and our world for Jesus Christ. I am Louisiana Baptist through and through. If God wants me to serve as our President then I am willing, but whoever is in this position must work hard to help develop a commitment, passion and vision that will make a difference in the generations that follow us in Louisiana. We must contend for the faith that has been handed down to us and pass it along to those behind us!