The Texas Baptist Missions Foundation (TBMF) honored First Baptist Church of Universal City (FBCUC) with Innovator Award for Creativity in Missions. The pastor of FBCUC is East Texas Baptist University alumnus David Lindow. The award was given to FBCUC during the TBMF Missions Awards Luncheon held during the recent Texas Baptist Family Gathering held in San Antonio.
“To be quite honest, we were shocked. We are not trying to be innovated but obedient to the call,” Lindow said. “As our people develop passions concerning different missions we empower them to do them. Currently, we have 26 missions ministries occurring with members championing the causes. Most of the vibrant mission ministries were the brain child of the membership, not the staff. That’s humbling but exciting.” The Innovator Award honors an individual or organization that has provided a model for ministry that others can adopt. The program for the award luncheon described FBCUC this way, “The church not only provides a blueprint for building missions, but infuses the ‘actual construction’ with the personality and the intent of Christ. This church is committed to ‘Loving up, Loving in, and Loving out’- encouraging all members to express God’s love in their community, state, nation and world.”
Lindow is not the only ETBU graduate on the ministerial staff of FBCUC. He serves with fellow Tigers Bryan Cash and Charles Fannin. “Serving with two other ETBU graduates has been a great joy. Being able to reflect back on former professors and classmates has been a joy,” reflected Lindow.
“One of those ETBU graduates happens to be my father-in-law (Charles Fannin), who now serves as our Senior Adult minister. What a joy to have a godly father-in-law who is also a partner in ministry. The other is our executive pastor. I couldn’t lead this congregation without the expertise of Bryan Cash. His attention to detail and impeccable people skills complement my gifts perfectly.”
Lindow graduated from ETBU in 1984, Cash in 1985 and Fannin in 1959.
FBCUC ministers to the community through their Needs and Seeds Ministry (household donations for the needy), New Found Freedom Ministry (outreach to the incarcerated at Giddings State School), Palisades Park Fellowship (multi-housing complex weekly worship), Women’s Shelter Bible Study, English as a Second Language classes, Spanish Ministry Sunday School class, medical and dental mission trips to the border, Disaster Relief Team, and other mission opportunities.
Lindow has fond memories of his time at ETBU. “The fondest memory I have is meeting my beautiful wife Lisa. God connected me to my life and ministry partner while at ETBU.”
“Second to that would be the impact of my religion professors Dr. Don Potts and Dr. Franklin Atkinson. These two men had a profound impact upon my ministry development. I learned more about pastoral care under Dr. Potts than I did at seminary. Dr. Atkinson taught me the incredible importance of attitude in ministry by his perpetual upbeat spirit. I’ll never forget the day that Dr. Atkinson sent someone to get me out of bed to attend Greek class because he thought I was over in my absentees. He was determined not to let me flunk. What a professor,” shared Lindow.
The Texas Baptist Family Gathering was a meeting like never before as the African American Fellowship of Texas, Texas Fellowship of Cowboy Churches, Vietnamese Baptist Fellowship of Texas, Lao Baptist Fellowship, Chinese Baptist Fellowship and Hispanic Baptist Convention held their respective annual meetings in conjunction with the Baptist General Convention of Texas Annual Meeting.