The Rev. Dr. W.M. Norwood, pastor of Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church in Ensley, on Tuesday delivered the opening sermon of the 152nd Annual Session of the Alabama State Missionary Baptist Convention. Dr. Norwood spoke before a packed congregation at First Baptist Church of Ensley.
Dr. Norwood, who is in his 90s, has been pastor of Macedonia for 66 years, and involved with the Baptist convention shortly after he got in the ministry 78 years ago. It was the first time he delivered the opening sermon.
He set the tone early in his 30-minute sermon by saying he’s not one of those preachers who stands still. “Where there’s movement, there’s life,” he said.
His speech was interrupted a number of times with thunderous applause as spoke from the first chapter of Revelations about the power of Jesus.
“Not only is [Jesus] the Alpha and Omega of power he is also the Alpha and Omega of resources,” Dr. Norwood said. “Some of you are worried about who in the governor’s mansion and who in the White House. . . I tell you what you need to worry about is whether or not Jesus is in your house.”
The pastor continued, “Jesus is the Alpha and Omega of love. God so loved the world . . . and He told us to ‘love one another.’ Your badge of identification is love. Christians must love one another. Anybody born by the spirit must love one another. You have a whole lot of folks in the church, but not of the church . . . Jesus said, ‘if you are born by the spirit, you have to love everybody.'”
The convention will be held in Birmingham through Nov. 14 with Civil Rights Leader the Rev. Al Sharpton as guest speaker.