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Pastor of the Week: January 2, 2012

caines | 1/3/2013, 4:30 a.m.

Men take pledges to grow as better fathers and husbands

Why Men Hate Going to Church? is the name of a book that posed a very interesting question in 2005. Many people may still ponder over this question, as they look at their churches filled with countless women and very few men. But Rev. Richard Dunn, 52, senior pastor of Faith Community Baptist Church and former commissioner of Miami, is proud of the strong male presence in his church. The family-oriented church has shown a lot of growth since he took over as pastor four years ago. In most cases, our Black women have been strong and held our families together, Dunn said. It is not very often that Black men come together and talk about real-life issues in terms of making a commitment toward family and children. Faith Community Baptist mens ministry, which is called M.A.F.I.A. (Men As Faith In Action), meets every Monday at 7 p.m. to keep each other sharp and hold each other accountable. According to Dunn, its goal is to help men develop an authentic walk with God and become a positive force at home, at church and in the community. They are people who are really committed to doing the right thing, Dunn said. Theyre men coming together to talk about how theyre going to improve in their walks with God. If you have strong Christian men, youll have strong Christian families. Keith Curry and Ralph Presley, both deacons at the church, lead the ministry. Family life, ministry and politics Dunn adds that hes also excited about the churchs youth ministry. His son, Richard Paul Dunn III, 24, answered Gods calling this year and became the youth pastor at Faith Community Baptist Church. That was the crowning moment of my ministry because many times the hardest testimonies are the people who know you best, he said. In spite of my humanity, my failures, my struggles and my challenges, my son saw something in my walk with the Lord. Dunn and his wife Daphne have been married 26 years and have two children. Ive been able to keep my family together and that means more to me than anything, he said. All of my achievements would mean nothing if my family was crumbling right before my eyes. Along with his great passion for his family and pastoring, he also has a calling in politics. He says he will run for city commissioner again in 2013. And while some may believe that church and politics shouldnt mix, he thinks otherwise. Theres nothing unscriptural or sinful about ministers being in politics, he said. If you dont have Godly leadership, anything goes. Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to many. By Malika A. Wrightmwright@miamitimesonline.com