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Southern Baptist Messianic Fellowship

SBMF News June 8th, 2013


Co-Founder, Southern Baptist Messianic Fellowship

Brother Randall Clark presented a tribute to our dear departed brother, Jerry Young.  Brother Jerry was one of the founding fathers of the SBMF.  He was a mentor to many messianic leaders and missionaries.  This tribute was presented at Beth Yeshua HaMashiach Messianic Jewish Synagogue, located in Houston, TX.  Our other dear departed brother Gus Elowitz started Beth Yeshua HaMashiach Messianic Jewish Synagogue and Jerry Young had a part in that new work also.


When we loose a loved one, we can call upon the Word of G-d to comfort our sorrow. Have faith in His Word as He has never made a promise that He didn’t keep. The Young family are in our prayers.  Please keep them in yours.



Co-Founder, Southern Baptist Messianic Fellowship

June 2013

Jerry Young was born in St. Louis, Missouri on December 22, 1930. He was the son of Edwin Holten and Della Elizabeth (Fisher) Young. Jerry came to faith in Christ on August 8, 1948. His spiritual awakening transformed his life, giving him a hunger for the Word of God and new priorities. Already a skilled musician by this time, Jerry dedicated his gifts to the Lord, answered the call to preach the Gospel, received his ministerial license, and began preparation for service at Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, Missouri.

In 1951, Jerry was called as the Associate Pastor and Minister of Music of West 14th Street Baptist Church in Houston, Texas. It was here that he met his future bride, Peggy Jean Ashworth. Jerry and Peggy were married on August 8, 1952, beginning a life-long partnership in Christian ministry. On June 21, 1953, Jerry was ordained, and he and Peggy began ministry together. Jerry initially served as a pastor in Baptist churches in Texas and Missouri. Jerry’s and Peggy’s journey soon took them to Corpus Christi, Texas where Jerry continued his education and pastoring, while Peggy raised their four children. Jerry received his B.A. degree in 1964 from the University of Corpus Christi.

In 1965, Jerry and Peggy were led to Perryville, Arkansas where Jerry taught high school and filled the pulpit as supply preacher for local churches. He was then called as pastor of Temple Baptist Church in Camden, Arkansas. While in Arkansas, Jerry also served as Chaplin to the State Legislature. In 1966, Jerry, Peggy, and their children returned to Texas where Jerry taught English and coached football and basketball at Ralph J. Bunch High School and Royal High School in Brookshire, Texas. He also served as Pastor of First Baptist Church, Wallis, Texas during this time. Jerry was called to serve as Pastor of Southeast Baptist Church, Houston, Texas in 1968 where he remained until he entered full-time evangelistic ministry in 1970.

Throughout the years of pastoral ministry, Jerry and Peggy became an accomplished musical ministry team. Both sang beautifully, and Jerry continued using his gift as a pianist to accompany their testimony in song. They recorded several Gospel albums and presented concerts as part of their ministry. To those who knew Jerry and Peggy, it was obvious they saw themselves as a team, working together for the Lord. Both did so with a spirit of selflessness.

During his adult life, Jerry began searching for his ethnic heritage, suspecting that his ancestry was Jewish. He had many conversations with his parents and siblings about their identity and, while not all of them were convinced, Jerry and others believed strongly that their roots were directly tied to Israel. This fact became an overriding theme in Jerry’s ministry, and his heart became burdened for the lost within the Jewish nation.

There were distinct qualities and principles that shaped and directed Jerry’s life. In addition to being gifted in music and speaking, Jerry served the Lord with a degree of independence, but not alienation. He was very knowledgeable in the Scriptures and an aggressive soul-winner. Jerry’s life became shaped by his spirit of single-mindedness in serving the Lord and a strong desire to reclaim his Jewish identity. This desire led him to begin what may have been the first Messianic congregation within the SBC—located in Houston and later led by Gus Elowitz. Gus served as the third or fourth president of the SBMF. Jerry’s sense of his Jewish heritage took him and Peggy to Israel. There and also after their return to the states, he worked hard at learning Hebrew—and we might add—tried to get the rest of us to learn it as well. Jerry’s and Peggy’s vision for Jewish evangelism reached beyond forming a local congregation. They also had a vision of forming a national fellowship affiliated with the SBC.

In 1990, Jerry’s idea of forming a national messianic fellowship affiliated with the SBC came to fruition when he and Peggy teamed with Jim and Barbara Hendricks of Princeton, WV. It was agreed that this would be attempted at the Annual Convention in New Orleans. Cards, announcing an exploratory meeting at a nearby motel for interested people, were distributed to messengers as they entered the convention arena. On June 13, 1990, about thirty people arrived—more than was expected. Some of these were representatives from the Home Mission Board (NAMB). About twenty-four committed themselves together to organize the Southern Baptist Messianic Fellowship. One of those present was John Worley, leader of a Messianic congregation out of First Baptist Church, Dallas, TX. John and his wife, Tammy, later became SBC representatives in Israel. Mark Davis and Climmy Reynolds, also present, became members of the fellowship. Both these families are now SBC representatives in Israel. John's mother, also a SBMF member, served as secretary of the Israeli Baptist Convention, located in Jerusalem Baptist Church, Narkis Street. To those involved in the early days of the fellowship, it became obvious there existed more interest in Messianic work and Jewish evangelism than was first expected. In the following annual meetings, there came to be an increasing number of people whose heart the Lord had touched for Jewish work. Some of the annual meetings and/or training conferences were held in Ridgecrest, NC; Atlanta, GA; Dallas, TX; Bolivar, MO; Indianapolis, IN; Orlando, FL; etc.

To a large extent, it was Jerry’s leadership that helped form a good rapport with the Home Mission Board, now the North American Mission Board. Both the Interfaith Department and the Language Division wanted to claim the SBMF, and both gave generous support to the annual meetings and training conferences.

In 1991 or 92, Jerry and Peggy, at the urging of the fellowship, moved to Fort Lauderdale, where they worked to begin a Messianic congregation. Jerry would later begin a Messianic congregation in Baytown, TX.

Jerry and Peggy have left behind a strong testimony in their service for Yeshua , both in traditional and Messianic ministry. It is to Jerry’s credit that he continued to go forward for the Lord even as his health grew weaker. Peggy preceded Jerry into Yeshua’s presence on April 14, 1998, and Jerry followed her on February 24th, of this year. Their works do follow them. It was their tireless work and prayer that the SBMF be used to help gather the lost sheep of the house of Israel. May that glorious day soon come. Amen.

Submitted by:

Dan Young and Jim Hendricks

Others present at the New Orleans organizational meeting were: Mike and Jayne Minnix, Liburn GA; Cary Worthington, Quitman, MS; Gus Elowitz, Houston, TX; William Gordon Jr., Liburn, GA; Larry Ross, Reisterstown, MD; Chapmond Davis, Fort Worth, TX: Doug and Marcy Shaw, Norwalk, CT; David Terry, HMB, Gwen Arthur, Silver Springs, MD; Alex Liebling, New Orleans, LA; Molly Dulaney, McComb, Ms; Patricia Gordon, Lilburn, GA; Arnold and Ruth Moon, Princeton, WV; Mr. and Mrs. Oscar Romo, HMB; Carol Frey, Springfield, VA.

Some others who later became affiliated with the Fellowship: Mike Smith, Columbus, OH; Tom Cox, Columbus, OH; Mike Copen, Springfield, IL; Jim and Loretta Austin, Myrtle Beach, SC; Fenton Ward, Los Angeles, CA, Jim Sibley, Dallas, TX; Oswald and Betty Harmon, Highlands, TX; and Nancy Meador, Highlands, TX.

But we do not want you to be uninformed, brethren, about those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve as do the rest who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so G-d will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. For this we say to you by the word of the L-rd, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the L-rd, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the L-rd Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of G-d, and the dead in Messiah will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the L-rd. Therefore comfort one another with these words. [1st Thessalonians 4:13-18]

For G-d has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our L-rd Jesus the Messiah, who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep, we will live together with Him. Therefore encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing. [1st Thessalonians 5:9-11]

They shall hunger no more, neither thirst anymore; neither shall the sun beat down on them, nor any heat; for the Lamb in the center of the throne shall be their shepherd, and shall guide them to springs of the water of life; and G-d shall wipe every tear from their eyes.  [Revelations 7:16-17]

And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of G-d is among men, and He shall dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and G-d Himself shall be among them, and He shall wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there shall no longer be any death; there shall no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away. " And He who sits on the throne said, "Behold, I am making all things new." And He said, "Write, for these words are faithful and true." And He said to me, "It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of the water of life without cost. "He who overcomes shall inherit these things, and I will be his G-d and he will be My son.  [Revelations 21:3-7]

But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ.  More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith, that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.   [Philippians 3:7-11 NASU]

For Zion's sake I will not keep silent, And for Jerusalem's sake I will not keep quiet, Until her righteousness goes forth like brightness, And her salvation like a torch that is burning. [Isaiah 62:1]


But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.  [2 Timothy 4:5]  



The L-rd bless you, and watch over you; The L-rd make His face shine on you, and be gracious to you;  The L-rd lift up His countenance on you, and give you peace.   [Numbers 6:24-26]

Shalom Alechem

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