The Reverend Dr. Mary Whitley Moss is pastor of St. Alma Baptist Church, Founder and Executive Director of Louisiana Area Women in Ministry, and Director of The Southeast Regional Biblical Institute. Her commitment to responsible leadership, transformative teaching and responsible handling of God’s Word is evidenced in her role as pastor, teacher, and administrator. Dr. Moss sees the church as the body of Christ and as the instrument chosen of God to continue the work of the ministry of Jesus.
Dr. Moss is a community leader. Her community focus is impacting lives through intergenerational leadership, outreach projects, and training of ministers and leaders. Dr. Moss is the impetus behind The Village Project, a community wide effort that will mobilize and empower lives within the Eden Park community. Dr. Moss’ core belief is that it takes the power of God and the whole village to move from a place of brokenness to a place of empowerment.
Dr. Moss earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary in New Orleans, Louisiana. She returned to New Orleans and earned a Masters of Divinity Degree from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, with languages, Hebrew and Greek. Dr. Moss earned a Doctor of Ministry Degree in Biblical Preaching from Beeson Divinity School at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. Thus she became the third African American female to be awarded a doctorate degree. Dr. Moss has certification in Expository Preaching from E. K. Bailey International Preaching Conference.
Dr. Moss was called to the ministry in 1991 and was later ordained by the late Reverend Charles T. Smith, pastor of Shiloh Baptist Church, the Fourth District Association and the Baton Rouge Ministerial Association. Thus she became the first female minister to be ordained at Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church where she served as Minister of Evangelism and Christian Education.
Dr. Moss was elected unanimously as the seventh pastor of St Alma Baptist Church of Lakeland, Louisiana was a historic moment in the life of the then 134 year old Baptist Church on February 17, 2008. She became the first female elected to the position of pastor of this traditional Baptist Church and the first female ever installed by the then, 133 year old Fourth District Baptist Association.
Dr. Moss has been privileged to serve as teacher, lecturer, facilitator, and revivalist at many schools, colleges and churches throughout this country. She is a member of the Fourth District Baptist Association. She has served as the Christian Education Director for the Pointe Coupee Parish. Dr. Moss is the recipient of numerous commendations and honors. However, a great honor bestowed upon Dr. Moss was the establishment of The Dr. Mary Whitley Moss Endowment Scholarship by the graduates of the Southeast Regional Biblical Institute in 2015. These scholarships will be awarded to worthy African American students who have chosen to pursue a degree Religious Education from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. A second honor bestowed upon Dr. Moss was in her 2017 visit to Israel through the Baptist Council of Preachers of Detroit when given the privilege to preach on the Sea of Galilee, where Jesus did much teaching and preaching. Thus, began her international preaching. A third honor which has been bestowed upon Dr. Moss is that of having the pleasure of serving The Honorable Mayor Sharon Weston Broome, mayor of Baton Rouge, LA on her Women’s Advancement Commission. Recently, Dr. Moss was again honored by being the 2018 recipient of The MidCity Redevelopment Alliance, Reverend Mary E. Moody Lifetime Achievement Medal of Honor.
Dr. Moss is married and has three children and seven grandchildren. When asked about her journey now, Dr. Moss simply says that her whole desire is to preach the Word, teach the Word, and live the Word in a way that ushers people into the presence of God.