34 Years in Christian Ministry – Pastor Receives O.D.


Pastor of the Mount Carey Circuit of Baptist Churches in St. James, Rev. Dr. George Simpson, will be among several distinguished Jamaicans to receive the prestigious Order of Distinction (OD), Officer Class, at King’s House on National Heroes Day (October 20).
Rev. Simpson has, over the years, distinguished himself as a true public servant, dedicating himself to service through the church and community.
Since entering the Christian ministry some 34 years ago, he has touched the lives of thousands of people across Jamaica, particularly the parishes of Trelawny and St. James, where he established several churches and basic schools.
In an interview with JIS News, Rev. Simpson paid tribute to the Jamaica Baptist Union for creating the “scope for service and development”, which has prepared him as a candidate for the award.
“Whatever I interpret the award to be, it is against the background of my work through the Jamaica Baptist Union, and I am really appreciative of this union, which has given me scope for development, scope for service, and I remain ever grateful to the Jamaica Baptist Union,” he tells JIS News.
Rev. Simpson says he was born in Brandon Hill, Clarendon, 60 years ago, “in the middle of the island, at the foot of the Bull Head Mountain”, to Robert and Avenell Simpson, a small farmer and housewife.
He was the 10th child among eleven, and gained his early education at the Eurica Preparatory School in May Pen and Brandon Hill Elementary School, gaining successes in the First, Second and Third Jamaica Local Examinations.
Rev. Simpson taught at Eurica Preparatory School and the Mackney Primary School as a pre- trained teacher between 1963 and 1965. He then responded to a call from the Christian ministry, entering the Calabar Theological Seminary in September 1965, from where he graduated and was ordained to fulltime ministry in 1969.
“It’s interesting to note that the first person who mentioned the matter of ministry of the church to me was my teacher Mrs. Mary Brown. When she said this to me, I did not pay much attention because I was set in my mind to become a head teacher. Anyhow, the call of the Lord was stronger on my heart,” he tells JIS News.
With the burning desire and a commitment to transform human lives, he accepted the call to his first circuit, the Stewart Town Circuit of Baptist churches in Trelawny, in August 1969. The circuit was made up of four churches – Stewart Town, Keith and Barnstaple in St. Ann and Faith in Jackson Town, Trelawny.
Rev. Simpson served this circuit for 11 unbroken years. He also served outside of the circuit as Acting Moderator and Moderator in the Ulster Spring and Duncan’s circuits for over three years.
He was Chairman of the Keith All-age School Board from 1971 to 1980, and Chairman of the Stewart Town Development Council and Citizen’s Association.
Rev. Simpson responded to a call from the Mount Carey Circuit of Baptist Churches in St. James in 1980, serving selflessly up to the present time.
He has been instrumental in establishing the Roehampton, Bickersteth, Comfort Hall, Belmont and Shettlewood churches; the Edmund Greaves Education Centre, and the Comfort Hall and Mount Carey Basic Schools.
Rev. Simpson also spearheaded the establishment of the Baptist Food Pantry and Welfare department in the parish, which assist hundreds of persons in times of need. Other areas of service included Chairman of the Roehampton Primary Board from 1984 to 1998; Vice Chairman of the Anchovy High School Board since 1981; Justice of the Peace since 1982; Station Chaplain for Anchovy; Chairman of St. James Auxiliary of Bible Society of the West Indies since 1984; Assistant Lecturer at Cornwall School of Nursing since 1995, and Superintendent of the western region of Jamaica Baptist Union since 1994.
Rev. Simpson has served at the highest levels as Vice President and President of the Jamaica Baptist Union for nine and two years, respectively; Vice President of the Jamaica Council of Churches, as well as Superintendent Pastor for the parishes of Hanover and Westmoreland.
He tells JIS News that his selection for the award took him by surprise as he was not thinking about getting public recognition. “If you are in the service of the Lord, even if you don’t get the earthly reward and recognition, you know that the Master’s reward is sure and will come to you,” he says.
Expressing gratefulness to God for “a wonderful family”, inclusive of his wife of 32 years, Joan; daughter, Gail and sons O’neil and Yohann, Rev. Simpson laments the deviant pathway chosen by many of the country’s future leaders and decision makers.
“This is one of the things we as parents have to say to our young people today. Avoid the face card, living above your means and trying to be like others. Parents, train your young ones in the right way, so that when they get older, they will not depart from the truth. Young people, place your trust in Jesus Christ and don’t worry about what you don’t have. Give thanks for what you have and make the best use of it,” he advises.
He is calling on all persons, those within and outside the church, “to be grounded in God and trust in him always as he will supply all needs according to his riches in glory”.
Rev. Simpson says he is thankful that in the awards to be given out, recognition is taken of services through religion, because the church continues to play an integral part in the life of the country. “From time to time we hear people asking, what is the church doing? The church is at work. We are doing what we can and I ask people who belong to the church to be faithful to the God of the church and work the works of righteousness as the Lord expects of us. The Jamaican church has a place in the scheme of things. Thank God for the church and for those who hold up Christian principles,” he says.

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