Rick White's passion is best summed up in his church's mission statement: "to increasingly know Jesus Christ and to continually make Him known through adoration, body life, compassion, discipleship and evangelism."
As senior pastor of what is known throughout Middle Tennessee as The People's Church, Rick's focus is on equipping Christians to share the good news of God's love and forgiveness with people across the street and around the world. Under his leadership, the church has grown from 300 members meeting in downtown Franklin - where the church had been located for 150 years - to a nearby 100-acre campus with nearly 5,000 members.
The People's Church lives out its vision of reaching the world for Christ through an extensive mission outreach to countries on several continents as well as places throughout the United States. The church has established on-going ministries around the globe including the Ukraine, Kyrgystan, Guatemala, China and Uganda and has seen hundreds of members invest their lives in these efforts.
It's local ministry outreach is evidenced in more than 4,700 members enrolled in Bible Study classes, and a Wednesday night youth service Fusion which draws about 400 young people each week. The People's Church has a wide-ranging creative arts ministry that aims to "reclaim the arts for God" while communicating with a lost world and building up the church through worship.
A hallmark of Rick's ministry has been his willingness to lead the congregation through change after change to keep the church's focus and ministry fresh for the culture it seeks to reach. Although Rick's Southern Baptist roots are deep and The People's Church is a Southern Baptist congregation, he and his ministry team design the worship services to appeal to an ever-younger un-churched contemporary audience. At the same time, worship offers a blend including more familiar music and themes that speak to the church family.
Rick grew up in the Birmingham, Alabama area and graduated from Southeastern Bible College and Samford University. He received a Masters of Divinity degree from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky.
Rick has been active in the Southern Baptist Convention, and served a ten-year tenure on the Board of Trustees at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the only man in the seminary’s history to be elected Chairman of the Board for three consecutive terms.
In addition to preaching each Sunday morning during three worship services, Rick is a frequent speaker at conferences and other churches. He and his wife, Patti, have three daughters: Carrie, Tori and a newly adopted daughter, Olena.
Pastor Rick’s sermon outlines are full of ideas for preaching on missions and evangelism.