Our vision can be summed up in one simple statement – our desire is to be disciples, and to help others become disciples of Jesus.
Our Ministry Team consists of our Pastor, John Craib, our Youth Pastor, John Burns and our Children and families Worker, Mairi Nasr.
We have eight deacons in our Leadership Team – Alex Carduff (Church Secretary), Ivor Shields (Treasurer), Alison Christie (Clerk to the Deacons’ Court), Kirsty Buchan, Peter Candlish, Jill Morrison, Leslie Morrison and Rhona Stevens.
The day to day running of the church is overseen by our Administrator, Joe McCrum, and our Finance Administrator, John Tainsh.
John Craib – Pastor
I have been the pastor at Bearsden Baptist Church since 1997. I was born in Aberdeen in 1958, grew up in Kilmacolm, went to school in Paisley and attended university in Aberdeen. It was during my time as a student that, out of curiosity, I bought a Good News Bible and began to read. When I reached the book of Daniel I finally abandoned my teenage atheism for a faith in Jesus, though I was not baptised as a believer until 1989. For 14 years I trained and worked as a Chartered Accountant in Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Liverpool and Glasgow.
After two years back in Glasgow and having attended a Baptist church since the return from England, I started to explore Baptist ministry and trained at the Scottish Baptist College in Glasgow for four years before being called to Bearsden Baptist Church. I am married to Carina and have five grown up children and four gorgeous granddaughters.
John Burns – Youth Pastor
I grew up in Ayr where I attended church with family growing up. It was in my mid-teens that I really found my own faith, thanks in part to our own youth workers and also a Scripture Union week within the local schools. However, the next few years were quite difficult due to ongoing health problems and I turned away from church for a while. Thankfully, God was still working in my life and I came back to faith aged 19 in the summer of 2003 while attending the Soul Survivor festival in the south of England.
I knew from fairly early on within my faith journey that God was calling me to minister in some form within the church and through serving as a volunteer within my church and with various para-church organisations I developed a passion for working with teenagers and helping them to explore their faith and fulfil their God given potential. In order to progress in this and to improve my skills and further my gifting’s for ministry I trained for 4 years at the Scottish Baptist College, graduating in 2012 with a 1st class honours in Divinity with Theology and Pastoral Studies. Following my graduation I went before the board of ministry within the Baptist Union of Scotland and was accepted for accredited Baptist ministry.
After serving in a couple of churches between 2012 and 2016, I was called to the position of Youth Pastor at Bearsden Baptist in May 2016. My hope and my passion is to see the young people I work with learn how to follow Jesus faithfully in their lives, to see them grow in their gifts and talents and to share their faith with their friends, families and communities.
I have been married to Gillian since 2006 and we live in a quiet cottage outside Barrhead with our ever expanding menagerie of animals (currently consisting of 2 cats and some hens…though Gill does keep talking about goats as well). I also love films, comics, sport (following my beloved Ayr United and Chelsea FC) and playing guitar and drums as part of the church worship bands.
Mairi Nasr – Children and Families Worker
I was brought up in Bishopton, Renfrewshire, went to school in Paisley, and started studying at the University of Dundee. However, I left Scotland to study Osteopathy in Kent. While back visiting home several years later, I found faith in God and was baptised at Erskine Baptist Church. And soon after this I relocated to the Lebanon with my Lebanese husband, and our three young children.
Experiencing the vibrant expression of faith in a Middle Eastern culture has had a transforming influence on my life. As a career, I taught English and Drama in Junior and High school.
My greatest interest is in creative writing, and I have co-written a published children’s book called ‘Food Wars’, which highlights the injustices of the modern global food system.
Back home again, as Children and Families Worker at BBC, this is my first wholly faith-based job, and I can’t imagine doing anything else!
- We believe in the existence of God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit – one God in three persons.
- We believe that out of his love for us, God sent his only Son, Jesus Christ to earth.
- We believe in His virgin birth, perfect life, His death and bodily resurrection, whereby he paid for the sins of humanity.
- We believe that Jesus Christ is the only Saviour of the world, that He will return to the Earth, and that through belief in Him, all can inherit eternal life.
- We believe in the in-dwelling power of the Holy Spirit, who strengthens and enables us to live out the Christian faith, and who reveals God’s will to us.
- Baptists are Christian believers with certain distinctive beliefs, which are summed up here.
- Baptists believe in the centrality of Jesus Christ in our lives, and that through Him, we can draw near to the Father and receive from Him the Holy Spirit.
- We believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God, and that its teaching is central to the Christian life.
- Baptists believe that all Christians are equal, and we strongly support the the right to religious belief free from interference or oppression by states and governments .
- However, probably the most distinctive feature of a Baptist church is our practice of baptising believers by fully immersing them in water, as the early Christian church did.
- We believe that the act of baptism symbolises a person’s death to their previous lifestyle and their rising up to newness of life. Thus baptism in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit is the outward sign of a believer’s faith.