Two pastors are departing Calvary Baptist Church in Dothan including the associate pastor for music and worship who has been employed there almost 20 years. It was announced during worship services Sunday that Brad Bradford, who leads Calvary's music ministry, and Gary Cornelius, Associate Pastor for Adults and Outreach, will leave the church in the next few weeks.
Bradford, who began his tenure at Calvary during or about 1993, read a resignation letter to the congregation. "We have been blessed for the past 19 years," he said. "We have seen our Lord do great things." During his employment at Calvary, Bradford is credited with many accomplishments including "Writing Christmas Cool," a full-length motion picture produced by the church in 2010.
Bradford pointed to philosophical differences with Senior Pastor Paul Thompson who has been on the job less than three months. "It's better our leaving be sooner than later," he said. "We are peace with our decision." Bradford promised him and wife, Rhonda, will continue to pray for Calvary. He final worship service is planned for June 3.
Meanwhile, Thompson announced the resignation of Cornelius who was present but did not speak publicly. "During the past three months I have developed a relation of trust with Gary and Julie (wife)." Thompson told the congregation. "I admire them for their personal strength."
Cornelius was in charge of Life Connection Groups (Sunday School) and outreach ministries. According to his LinkedIn page, Cornelius has worked at Calvary, Dothan's second largest Southern Baptist Church, for more than eight years. He will be honored for his service "in a couple of weeks," according to Thompson.Bradford and Cornelius each received a standing ovation from the congregation.