Reverend Dr. James A Webster
Rev. Dr. James Arthur Webster, a native of Rockingham County, was born, reared and educated in Madison, North Carolina. Upon graduating from Charles R. Drew High School, he entered the United States Air Force, where he honorably served four years during the Vietnam Conflict and obtained the rank of Staff Sergeant. With his military career behind him, Dr. Webster immediately began to further his education. He enrolled in Jefferson Business College, where he received an Associate Degree in Business Management. This achievement put him on a lifelong quest for higher education in both the Spiritual and professional arena. He worked for the United States Postal Services until his early retirement in 1990 and then he became the first full time Pastor of the Oak Ridge First Baptist Church and served as the longest tenured pastor in the church’s history.
Dr. Webster holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Religion and Philosophy from Shaw University of Divinity School; and is also a Certified Continuing Christian Education Instructor through Shaw Divinity School. Dr. Webster holds a Masters of Divinity Degree, Doctorate of Theology Degree. He was awarded an Honorary Degree of Humane Letters from Bethlehem Bible College in Roanoke, VA. He is currently listed in the National Register in Washington, DC’s 2000 Edition of “Who’s Who” among honored Professionals and Executives. Dr. Webster served on numerous community boards and committees. He served on the Board of Trustees of the Bethlehem Bible College. He was a General Board member of the General Baptist State Convention where he also served as Vice Chairman of the Personnel Committee. (Dr. Webster had been appointed by Vice President At Large at that time, Dr. Leonzo Lynch to be the Vice Chairman of this board). Dr. Webster was a member of the following: the Hampton Ministers Conference, the Lott Carey Foreign Mission Convention, the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc., the Oak Ridge Ministerial Alliance and the NAACP chapter in Greensboro. Dr. Webster was a Past Moderator of the High Point Educational and Missionary Baptist Association, Inc., and served on the Ordination Council and Executive Board.
God called Dr. Webster into the ministry and in 1975 he was licensed to preach the gospel at his home church Goodwill First Baptist Church under the leadership of his esteemed pastor, Dr. B.H. Bonham. Before entering in the ministry he served as an ordained Deacon at Goodwill Baptist Church. The following year he was ordained by the Rowan Baptist Association. After his ordination he became named the Assistant Pastor there at Goodwill. He also served faithfully for six years as the Pastor of Zion Baptist Church in Mt. Airy, NC. However, in 1984, he was called to pastor the Oak Ridge First Baptist Church, where he faithfully served for the past 39 years. Under his leadership the Oak Ridge First Baptist Church experienced phenomenal growth and was blessed to enter into four major building projects. His favorite line was “To God Be All The Glory”!! He loved Oak Ridge First Baptist Church with his whole heart and was always cited by saying I’ve spent over half my life with these people and if I had to do it all over again, I’d do the same thing. He brought excitement, experience, and awesome execution to the office of pastoral leadership not only locally, state, nationally, and even the world. He was known as the Mission Pastor! He strongly believed that if the church was not about missions then there was no need to exist. He believed in giving to help build God’s kingdom in every area possible. He was honorable, humble, and humorous! To know him was to love him. He loved missions so much so, that Each Child Counts Foundation built a school in Clay Ashland, Liberia West Africa, and has named the Dr. James A. Webster Elementary School Wing in his honor. The School Opened on February 20th, 2018 and Dr. Webster was in attendance. While in Liberia he preached at the Historic Providence Baptist Church, 8:30 AM and 10:30 AM morning worships, which Rev. Lott Carey founded and he’s the name sake of the Foreign Mission Convention that Dr. Webster has supported for many years. He counted that a high honor in his life and gave God the glory! Dr. Webster was married to the love of his life Mrs. Brenda (Dalton) Webster by which lasted 56 years. They had one son, Minister Derrick Webster who served faithfully by his father’s side. A daughter-in love Nicole. His most precious joy was granddaughter Madison Gabriella Webster.
According to Rev. Dr. James Arthur Webster, if he could leave a legacy, it would be that he lived his life with integrity. 21 Matthew 25:21 His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.