Jason Burden, pastor of First Baptist Church in Nederland and incumbent first vice president of the Baptist General Convention of Texas, will be nominated for president of the convention.
Adam Pardue, pastor of Highland Baptist Church in Lubbock, will nominate Burden at Texas Baptists’ annual meeting, Nov. 15-17 in Waco.
Pardue, who grew up at First Baptist Church in Nederland and served as associate pastor there, called Burden “a gentle giant” who has the ability to “speak peace” into difficult situations.
“He has the right temperament to lead in difficult times,” Pardue said, noting Burden has led his congregation and community through times of hurricanes and a pandemic.
“He is a man of great character and resolve who leads and loves his family as a great example,” Pardue said. “The man absolutely loves Jesus, and he’s a walking example of what it means to live like that.”
Appreciates Texas Baptists’ ‘relational richness’
Burden, who is completing his second one-year term as first vice president of the BGCT, said he is willing to allow his nomination for president because he wants to “give back” to Texas Baptists.
“When there is a crisis, Texas Baptists rise up to help out,” he said. “That relational richness has been shown to us in Southeast Texas.”
The generosity and cooperative spirit of Texas Baptists clearly was evident when Nederland and the surrounding area went through Hurricane Harvey and Tropical Storm Imelda, he noted.
“I feel like I’ve been a pastor in disaster ever since 2017,” he said. “In the process, I’ve learned the importance of being flexible in chaotic times.”
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Texas Baptists helped meet crisis needs, and churches have benefited from the collective wisdom that comes from sharing ideas and experiences, he added.
“There’s a lot of intentionality required to help people connect heart to heart” when limits are placed on physical connections, he noted.
If elected, Burden said, he wants to deepen the connections between Baptists around the state and “highlight the power that comes from being connected to one another.”
He expressed appreciation for the opportunity to “have a seat at the table” as a convention officer the past two years and for the friendships he has developed around the state.
Burden, a graduate of Tarleton State University, earned both his Master of Divinity degree and Doctor of Ministry degree from Baylor University’s Truett Theological Seminary.
He has been pastor of First Baptist Church in Nederland since 2011. Previously, he was pastor of churches in Trinity and Chilton.
In addition to serving two terms as first vice president of the BGCT, he has been moderator both of Golden Triangle Baptist Association and Falls Baptist Association.
He and his wife Kristi marked their 25th wedding anniversary this week. They have three children—Hayden, Hallie and Rylie.