Pastor of the Israel Missionary Baptist Church
After being called by God and anointed by His Holy Spirit, our humble pastor, Dr. Rodney Jerome Howard, Sr., has faithfully led and fed Israel Missionary Baptist Church since November 1991. He is the fifth pastor to lead this loving, historical congregation of more than eighty years. Pastor Howard continues to honor the legacy of Israel’s founding and organizing shepherd of nearly forty years, Dr. Howard David Higdon.
Reared in a praying and tithing home, his father and mother presented and introduced him to the Lord as a toddler. As a baby, Rodney J., was often passed from pew to pew at Greater Cornerstone B. C. It was at G. C. B. C. where he heard the Word of God, received Jesus, and was baptized at the age of five. At the age of twelve while developing as a young disciple in G. C. B. C.’s ministry, Rodney announced to his father in the ministry, Dr. Wilbert Hudson, that he had a strong desire and calling to preach the gospel. This burning desire never dissipated, but
Pastor Rodney J. Howard Sr.
only grew stronger through his adolescence. Thus, during the summer following his graduation from Gardena High School, he preached his first sermon in August 1983, and was licensed at the age of eighteen. Furthermore, Dr. Hudson and Greater Cornerstone further impacted his life by provided full tuition to the historic Bishop College in Dallas, Texas.
During his attendance at Bishop College, Pastor Howard was a member of Cornerstone Baptist Church of Christ. While there, he served on the church’s staff and was further mentored by Pastor Robert (Dr. Bob) H. Wilson. However, following the unfortunate closure of Bishop College, Rev. Howard returned to Los Angeles, California and was appointed to the full-time staff position as Minister of Christian Education/ Youth at his home church, Greater Cornerstone Baptist Church where he was later ordained by Dr. Willie Simmons.
Nearly 25 years ago Rodney Jerome Howard, Sr. began his dedicated service of leadership to Israel Missionary Baptist Church. For nearly three decades, due to the glory of God, there have been hundreds of souls saved and baptized, hundreds of weddings and funerals held, thousands of visitations, and consultations. As well as, Pastor Howard’s continual prayers being offered to God on our behalf.
Beyond his humble service as shepherd of our flock, Pastor Howard served for 8 years as Moderator/CEO of Pacific District Missionary Baptist Association of Los Angeles, Inc. Under his leadership, the faithful pastors, churches and auxiliaries performed countless mission projects, hundreds of souls were saved through street evangelism and a special community project called Missionaries on a Mission. Under Rev. Howard’s leadership, Missionaries on a Mission ministered to many souls in the city of Los Angeles’s most needed areas (i.e. skid row, South Park, etc.). Additionally, other positions he has served in are as vice president of the Baptist Minister Conference of Los Angeles, member of the California Missionary Baptist State Convention, charter member of the Los Angeles Metropolitan Churches, as well as, many other boards, committees and consultant groups that he still serves on today.
Through the years, Rev. Howard has developed many lifelong friendships and has compiled a network of colleagues nationwide who share the same great passion of preaching and pastoral assignment. Our pastor has received numerous accolades and commendations from both civic and church community leaders which includes several United States Presidents, and Congressional Officials. He was also awarded an Honorary Doctorate degree from St. Stephen Bible College in 2001.
The joy of Pastor Howard’s life is family. His family unit consists of his wonderful parents, many spiritual moms and dads and his children, Dejanae Nicole, Miracle LeeAnn, and Rodney, Jr.. Despite the love and support of his family he realized the need for his life to improve. So, he asked God to make him happier, healthier and holier. Then, in November 2011, Dr. Rodney Howard, Sr. married the beautiful and gifted Barbara Ann Turner Calhoun. Together our Pastor and First Lady, form are a mighty team for God and are a tremendous gift to our church.
We ask that you please pray along with us for our pastor and his passion for helping hurting souls. This passion also includes his efforts of reducing recidivism, expanding community ministry to the mentally and spiritually afflicted; in addition to, preparing many neighborhoods for disaster. These are all demonstrated through the implementation and continuation of the "Turn Up the Vision".