This week we would like for you to meet Dr. John Killian. He is a local pastor that has a heart for teaching students preparing for the ministry. Dr. Killian a very humble man who would never introduce himself as the President of the Alabama Baptist Convention, though he has served in that position since November. He is a lifelong student with a love for history, especially the War Between the States. He is a Southerner, through and through, with a heart for Jesus.
Where did you grow up?
I grew up on the west side of Birmingham in a steel mill community called Wylam. It was an urban part of the city, but it still had a small community feel.
What is your testimony?
I grew in church at Wylam Baptist Church, which has since closed. I was saved at a youth camp and the age of twelve.
Who helped disciple you in the faith?
Growing in my faith I had an older man who helped me in my spiritual walk, also some older High School guys encouraged me in witnessing and faithful Christian living. But I would have to say that my grandmother was my greatest influence.
Briefly describe your call to ministry.
I found myself wanting to be in ministry. I would lock myself in my bedroom and preach. I love it, and I still love the pulpit ministry! I was about age 13-14 at the time. I started preaching at the age of 20.
Are you married? Kids?
My wife’s name is Jeanie and she is a second grade teacher at Pleasant Grove Elementary. I have two kids. A daughter, Sarah, who is 24 and graduated from the University of Alabama. She is currently a reporter with NBC Channel 13 news. My son, John Jr. graduated from the University of Mobile and has served a year on the mission field in Northern Ireland.
Where do you serve in ministry?
I am the pastor at Maytown Baptist in Maytown, AL. I will have served there 15 years in May. I am also serving as the President of the Alabama Baptist Convention. I enjoy influencing the state convention and Alabama Baptist life.
What is your favorite hobby?
I like historical reading, documentaries, and travel. I am currently working on my Master’s in History at the University of West Alabama. One of my favorite periods of history is the American war between the states.
What is your favorite sport to watch and/or play?
I like all sports, but I would have to say my favorite to watch is Alabama Crimson Tide Football.
What is your favorite seminary class to teach?
I am currently teaching Intro to Ministry, but of all the classes I have taught here my favorite would be Christian Doctrines.
Besides the Bible what was the last book you read?
I am currently reading the biography of Robert Peel by Douglas Hurd. Peel was the Prime Minister of Great Britain during the 1840’s. That is a required reading for one of my classes this semester at UWA.
What is one piece of advice you would give students about their years in seminary?
Finish your degree, especially if you are close! I can’t name all the students that I have taught here that are a semester or less away from finishing and don’t finish.