Oakdale Baptist Church Leadership
Oakdale Baptist Church is blessed to have a leadership team who are truly dedicated to Christ and accomplishing His will. Following are brief bio's of our leadership team and their qualifications for ministry.
Dr. Justin Ford
Everything that is alive, grows
Everything that grows, changes
Change causes pain every single time
If you’re anything like me, it has always been easier to stay the same than to go through the pain of change that can lead to growth. But the story of my journey with God has been defined by Him constantly challenging me to grow personally and to spur others to take steps in His direction because I believe that the life God offers is worth the pain of change.
Although I grew up in and around the church, it wasn’t until I was a teen that I finally realized my need to put my faith in Christ as Savior. A couple of years later I would surrender my life to Pastoral ministry, and around the same time meet my future wife, Christine. Together we set out on a journey of faith that, after 14 years of serving in churches across the state, would ultimately bring us to Edmond Oklahoma. At Oakdale Baptist Church we would plant deep roots for our children, Makenzie and Josh and invest in the community around us. Our time at Oakdale has been the most challenging and rewarding of our ministry. There has been change. There has been pain. There has been growth. But most of all, we have experienced LIFE in Christ that has made it all worthwhile!
Oakdale, itself has undergone incredible changes in the past 10 years. From a small, rural, family church to a growing community church, God has given us a new direction. Today we are a church with a unique opportunity to impact its community and beyond. While we have not “arrived” at any of the goals we feel God has set before us, we have grown in EVERY single area. We believe that God has only just begun to do great things in our church.
If your family is searching for a church at this time, we invite you to come and experience what God is doing here at OBC. Come and worship with us. Come and study with us. Come and get to know us. But most of all, come and get to know the God that we are experiencing every time we meet together!
Rev. Paul Kersh serves as Associate Pastor and Administrator for Oakdale Baptist Church. He grew up in the church as a pastors kid, so he has seen the good, bad and ugly of the church yet God called him when he was a teenager to serve in the local church and share the good new of the Gospel of Jesus.
Paul comes to Oakdale with many years of service in the pastorate and most recently served on staff with Equipped By His Word Ministries and The Baptist Foundation of Oklahoma. He is a graduate of Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, OK. with a BA in Family Psychology and a minor in Sociology. Paul has also attended Luther Rice Seminary in Atlanta, GA.
Paul and his wife Angela, are High School sweethearts and have been married since 1994. They have 4 children, Makenna, Will, Lizzie and Blaze. They are privileged to homeschool their children and fill it is an extreme honor to be given these children as a gift to be a good steward of.
The family has always been a passion of the Kersh’s. Paul and Angela and their family are like most families; they don’t always get it right. But the Kersh family is always striving to embrace the roles that God has set before them as husband, wife, father and mother. Their desire is to raise a generation that are changed by the Gospel of Jesus and thereby are difference makers for the Kingdom of God.
I was raised in the small town of Chickasha, Oklahoma. My childhood memories include expansive wheat fields, ATV riding with my brothers, and singing in my hometown church, Sharon Baptist Church. I encountered God’s unconditional love and grace as an 8th grader and that is when I accepted Christ as my savior. As I grew in my relationship with Him and His word, I realized that He also wanted to be Lord of my life. This took me on a journey that at age 16, would mean that I gladly surrendered to ministry. I had no idea at the time what God had planned for me. I knew my plan wasn’t His so I moved away from the dream of being a performer and into a deep desire to see people interact with the very God of the Universe through music in worship and adoration and praise. I envisioned people enjoying God with music as their backdrop.
When in college at Oklahoma Baptist University, God’s plan for me was made clear; He had called me to be a worship leader. So, what was once a dream, turned into a reality as I was, and still am, able to watch Him be praised and worshipped around the globe. I have been blessed to witness hundreds of thousands of faces worshipping Him for the last 20 years as I have traveled all over the world leading worship at retreats, camps, churches and conferences.
My husband, Justin King, and I believe it is an honor and privilege to be serving the local body of Christ here at OBC. From the moment we walked in for the first time we saw a church that is warm, friendly, community seeking, and a people that want to know God, love Him, and serve others. We even found that our two children Emory and Griffin are so loved and taken care of here too.
We are not a perfect church and we are not a perfect people. We are just people striving to be more like Christ and enjoy His intense love for us. I hope you will come and worship with us, open your heart to the love of Christ, expressed so beautifully on the cross and enjoy the community of believers striving to share this love that has made such an impact on my family and I.
Jimmy was saved as a child while attending Oakdale Baptist Church. He has been a faithful attender never belonging to another church. As an adult, Jimmy has served in every area of the church. While a student at church camp, God called Jimmy to serve Him fulltime in the local church. After several years of serving the Lord, in various ways in the secular work place, God called Jimmy to give his life to serve the families of Oakdale by loving and leading their children to knowing that Jesus loves them and has a plan for their lives. Jimmy was called as Oakdale Baptist Church’s Children Pastor in February 2019.
Jimmy has been married for 22 years to his wife, Terri. They have two children. Their son, Nathan, is married to Brandalyn. They also have a daughter, Laramie, who is a student at Kansas State University.
Jimmy’s favorite verse is “Don’t be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of you mind so you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:2
“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” – John 14:27
I have two wonderful parents, Thomas and Beth Parker, and a big brother also named Thomas. I consider Piedmont, OK to be my hometown and graduated from Piedmont High School in 2013. I went on to play college basketball at three different colleges and finished when I graduated from Oklahoma Christian with a Bachelor of Science in the Spring of 2017. I am currently pursuing my Masters in Business Administration at OC.
I accepted Jesus into my heart as a freshman in high school when I realized there was nothing in this world that would satisfy me and that my joy and my fulfillment comes from Christ and Christ alone. From there my testimony is a story of thinking I had it all figured out but each time God humbled me and then revealed His faithfulness by showing me how much greater His plans are.
I surrendered my life to ministry in the summer of 2016 while serving as a leader at FCA camp. I had no idea how, when, or what that was going to look like for me, but I left it in God’s hands and began confidently praying that if it was His will He would reveal all of that to me in His time. He lead me to OBC where I became a youth intern and five months after that He opened a door that I never saw coming – I was given the opportunity to co-pastor the youth program!
Along with praying for a door to open in ministry, I had also been praying for a community that would take me deeper in my faith, and that is what I’ve found here at OBC. Being a part of OBC has challenged me to love and lead like Jesus and I am so thankful to have the opportunity to do that in the youth ministry. Alvin and I are pumped to see how God is going to use us to further His Kingdom!
Fun Facts about Sarah Parker:
When I was a little kid I thought that Spider-Man was my cousin (we have the same last name).
I am a little addicted to coffee, sweet tea, gummy bears, and Marco’s pizza.
My senior year of high school I was voted “Most Likely to be Famous.”
Alvin Varghese and I are NOT dating.
Favorite verse(s): Philippians 3:7-14
I grew up in the town of Mustang, Oklahoma, home of the Broncos. I was very involved in high school running cross country and track, and also played basketball. I considered myself to have a pretty successful high school career, but I never truly felt satisfied with my life and I consistently felt like I was in the trap of pleasing others at all times. I really found Christ and accepted Him into my heart when I made the big leap from being a Bronco to a Broncho by attending the University of Central Oklahoma. I had always known about God, but never truly understood what His son dying on the cross truly meant for me. My life has been drastically different ever since, and I pursue Christ in a way that leaves me wanting more every day.
Throughout college I was very involved in numerous organizations and activities and tried my hardest to help others find and pursue Christ alongside me by holding Bible studies within my fraternity, meeting up with others, and just trying to love others like Christ loves us. A huge door opened in my life when one of my best friends, who was the Youth Pastor at OBC, asked if I could help his church out with Falls Creek; I jumped at the opportunity. Falls Creek was one of the best weeks of my life, and I experienced something with Oakdale Baptist Church that I had never experienced before – a strong church community. I fell in love with OBC and became an intern shortly after that trip. After a year of interning I was given the opportunity to co-pastor the youth ministry.
The Bible says in Hebrews 10:24 to spur each other on toward love and good deeds. I believe that Oakdale Baptist Church does that in a way that never makes it feel like a task. The community of believers at OBC are truly one of a kind, and they push me to be a better Christian. The youth at OBC are, in my opinion, some of the best students in the state, and there are no words to describe how grateful I am every day that I have the opportunity to lead them. Our mission in the youth ministry is to help connect our student’s hearts with the heart of God and we believe that with a lot help from Jesus, we get closer and closer to that goal every day!
Fun Facts about me:
I once killed a rattlesnake with nothing but a kitchen knife taped to a broom.
I love Thunder basketball an irrational amount.
The Lion King is my favorite movie of all time.
Sarah Parker and I are NOT dating.
My husband Jerry and I have been married for 50 years. We joined Witcher (Oakdale) Baptist Church in December of 1992 after having attended for several years. We knew this was where God was calling us to serve and plant our membership. We have two wonderful children that have blessed us with numerous grandchildren and
I can say with full assurance that God had a plan for my life; it wasn’t retirement. My husband retired in 1994 and my employer at that time was scaling back his business, so I considered myself almost retired anyway. Our pastor at the time asked me to volunteer in the office a few hours a week and I agreed. The next pastor would require more time from his secretary/office manager; it was then that I was asked to accept a paid position working half days four days a week. Initially, I said no, but I told him that I would consider sharing the duties with someone else. This pastor wrote a weekly epistle for the church bulletin and one of them really struck me. He wrote that God had given him the position of pastor of Witcher Baptist Church and he was going to need a lot of help from the church. He quoted Luke 12:48 which says, “From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.” When I typed that verse God said, “Do you hear me? I want you to do this.” So here I am, 20 years later, still fulfilling God’s plan.
It has been my honor and privilege to serve in the capacity of Office Manager at Oakdale Baptist Church. I have tried and will continue, with the best of my ability, to serve members, guests, and the staff of Oakdale Baptist Church, as well as the Oakdale community in a loving Christian manner as long as God wants me to.