Succession

The Legacy Continues

On January 1, 2020, Brother Mike Walker will transition from senior pastor to the role of founding pastor (pastor emeritus) of The Bayou Church; Pastor Sean Walker will assume the role of senior pastor. This transition has been a topic of discussion and planning among the leaders of The Bayou Church for several years, and we’re excited for what God has in the future with Brother Mike and Pastor Sean in these new roles.

Based on these changes, you may have some questions. We’ve done our best to answer many of them below.

WEB Transition Ordination Prayer Moment 800x533

Click on the video to hear Pastor Mike's Legacy series message and his succession announcement.

Honoring Brother Mike

"Those who are taught the Word of God should provide for their teachers, sharing all good things with them." - Galatians 6:6 (NLT)

If you would like to give a gift to support Brother Mike and Paula in their upcoming transition, we have a special fund setup for this purpose.
(Click the "Giving Type" dropdown menu, and choose "Founding Pastor.")

Give to Support the Walkers' Transition

Succession FAQ

Provided by the Board of Trustees:
Bret Lofton, Jack Lawrence, Kenneth Marks, Scott Andrepont, Brent Abshire, Paul Favaron

What does Founding Pastor of The Bayou Church mean?

East Bayou Baptist Church originated as a mission church in the 1960s. Brother Mike Walker became the pastor in 1984 and brought a passion to spread the Gospel message to all of Acadiana. He challenged our congregation to step out boldly and adopt a non-traditional approach to ministry. This led to exponential growth and the birth of what we call today, The Bayou Church. We honor Brother Mike with the title of Founding Pastor of The Bayou Church in recognition of his innovative and forward-thinking leadership. The title indicates a transition to a more behind-the-scenes role. 

What is the timeline for the transition?

Brother Mike made the announcement to the congregation on Sunday, August 11. Then, on Sunday, August 25, Bret Lofton, Board of Trustees Chairman, led a members meeting where Pastor Sean Walker was unanimously endorsed to be the next senior pastor of The Bayou. On Sunday, October 6, we will celebrate Brother Mike’s 35th anniversary at The Bayou, honoring him for everything he and Paula have done to lead us throughout the years. On Sunday, December 8, Brother Mike will preach his final sermon as senior pastor. On January 1, 2020, Pastor Sean will officially step into the senior pastor role while Brother Mike will transition to founding pastor.

How was this decision reached?

The Bayou Church Board of Trustees, in addition to Brother Mike, unanimously endorsed Sean as the next senior pastor. We know that Sean understands and values our vision and is committed to moving The Bayou forward on the same path we’ve been on for years.

Will Brother Mike still be a part of the leadership team?

Brother Mike will still be a part of the leadership team at The Bayou, providing insight and wisdom into the vision and direction of the church. He will not have as much involvement in the day-to-day operations.

Will Brother Mike still preach?

Absolutely. From time to time, and not according to any set schedule, Brother Mike will definitely be a part of the preaching rotation. In his new role as Senior Pastor, Pastor Sean will take on the bulk of the preaching responsibilities.

Will Brother Mike still be compensated?

Yes. Brother Mike will still play a pivotal role in advising and serving behind the scenes. We will support him in this new role accordingly.

How is Sean feeling about this transition?

Sean is excited for the future of The Bayou Church and is honored to be stepping into a role that his father has held for the past 35 years. Sean grew up at The Bayou Church and, over the past several years, has been taking on more and more responsibility as we have been moving toward this transition. He is ready to take on this new role as the Senior Pastor.

Should we expect big changes in style or direction of the church?

No. Sean has been an integral part of crafting the current direction of the church, and we have no plans to make major changes or shifts. We’re excited about the direction we’re heading and looking forward to seeing how God continues to work in and through us in the future.

We’d Love to Connect

If you have any questions or if there’s any way we can help you, please contact us.