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Pastor to Politician

June 1, 2004

Thomasville - For eight years, Mike Keown has been the Pastor at First Newark Baptist Church in Thomasville. "I'm a motivated person to get out there and meet people and try to make a difference," Keown says.

Before Pastor Mike was called to preach here, he felt a calling to become "Politician Mike". Keown says, "It started out ten years ago, and I've just been waiting for the right time."

That time is now. Due to redistricting, Georgia house seat 173 is open with no incumbent, a perfect opportunity for anyone wanting to enter politics. Keown believes that someone is him. He says, "I think during these times that it's a good time for a person of faith to get involved in the political process."

But is it really a good idea to mix politics and religion? Keown thinks so. He says, "I think you need to have people from each side, and I will bring a clear, distinctive, Christian bend to it."

And if he is elected he doesn't plan to abandon his flock. "I plan on continuing staying right here as Pastor of First Newark," he says. "They know and I know there will have to be some adjustments made, because I'll be out of town some, but we have a great group of folks here who really work together, and I think we can make that transition."

A transition that Keown prays will take place.

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