Miami pastor murdered, suspect arrested

MIAMI (BP) — Pastor Advert Lenoir, senior pastor of Westview Baptist Church in Miami due to the fact 2009, was stabbed to demise on the measures of his church making Saturday, April 6.

Law enforcement have arrested James Dawkins, a homeless male whom Lenoir experienced befriended and experienced been supporting, and have charged Dawkins with first-degree murder.

By the years of his pastorate, Lenoir led his congregation to be a gospel presence in the community. The church was actively concerned in Westview Elementary School, in which Lenoir served as a chaplain and led his church to direct a robust following-school program, a tutoring ministry, summertime camp and other actions built to share God’s appreciate with little ones and their mothers and fathers.

Westview Baptist Church also adopted a area minimal-money condominium local community, with church associates making associations with citizens and conference useful requires, these types of as assisting unemployed older people build techniques to generate resumes and get ready for interviews.

Hundreds of folks have been baptized as a outcome of the church’s investment in the neighborhood.

For the duration of Lenoir’s tenure as Westview pastor, other churches have come along with Westview Baptist Church to guide in reaching neighborhood citizens with the gospel of Jesus Christ. A lot of churches have despatched mission teams to minister through the community with trip Bible colleges and other initiatives.

Lenoir also served as a chaplain with the North Miami Law enforcement Division.

NBC Miami reported that Lenoir was attempting to enable Dawkins get back on his feet, even making it possible for him to remain on the church property, but that arrangement was ending. Authorities mentioned Dawkins stabbed Lenoir “without provocation.”

In a 2019 short article about the church’s active presence in the group, Lenoir stated, “We want to access our community and commit whatever sources we have into them.”

He added, “We are making an attempt to product Christ in a realistic way.”

Florida Baptist leaders have expressed their love and admiration for Lenoir and their prayers for his loved ones.

“He was a buddy who certainly experienced a like for his household, church and group,” mentioned Erik Cummings, Florida Baptists’ Black multicultural catalyst. “He was not a stranger to anyone if you didn’t know him, he would make confident you acquired to know him. If there was an option to do a little something for or discover additional about engaging and impacting the local community, he was there. I am heartbroken above his death and praying for his spouse, little ones and church relatives as they navigate this tragedy.”

Patrick Coats, Florida Baptists’ East area catalyst explained Lenoir as “a delight to be all around. He was the kind of brother that was a buddy to everyone he came in get hold of with.This tragic news comes with deep sadness my ideas and prayers go out to his spouse and young children.”

Pastor Lenoir was nicely recognized and beloved in his community he was a loving partner and father, and he was highly regarded by other pastors, mentioned Al Fernandez, Florida Baptists’ Southeast region catalyst.

Lenoir, a indigenous of Miami, is survived by his wife, Bree, and 4 little ones, ages 13 to 20.

(EDITOR’S Take note &#8211 Margaret Colson is a writer for the Florida Baptist Conference.)

The write-up Miami pastor murdered, suspect arrested appeared initially on Biblical Recorder.