Shannon Long celebrates 50th anniversary in the ministry

Whitmire First Baptist Church honored pastor J. Shannon Long for his 50th year in the ministry, as members of the congregation, friends and family joined together for a special “golden anniversary” worship and celebration service Nov. 9.

Long’s ministry has come full circle at Whitmire First Baptist Church. While attending Presbyterian College in 1962, he and his wife, Loraine Patterson Long, served as summer youth directors at Whitmire First Baptist Church. He was subsequently ordained into the ministry at Whitmire First Baptist on Nov. 29, 1964, while pursuing his master of divinity degree from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

After earning his graduate degree, Long began his first full-time pastorate at Sandridge Baptist Church in Ridgeville, where he remained for two years before being called back to serve as pastor of Whitmire First Baptist.

Following God’s call, the Longs were appointed by the Foreign Mission Board to serve as missionaries on June 27, 1972, and served in Santiago, Chile, for 15 years.

After returning from the foreign mission field, Long served as pastor of several other churches before eventually returning to Whitmire First Baptist in 2006.