The Reverend Kevin D. Barnes, Sr. was born and raised in Donaldsonville, Louisiana. He comes from a family that loves the Lord, and taught him the way of the Lord. He is married to the lovely Brenda Barnes and is the father of three sons, Kevin Jr., Keith, and Kenneth Barnes. Dr. Barnes migrated to California after high school at age 17 and immediately became an active member of White Oak Grove Missionary Baptist Church of Oakland, California, Dr. Walter L. Humphrey, Pastor. In July 1986, Dr. Barnes received his license to preach and delivered his first sermon at his home church, White Oak Grove, entitled, “What’s Love Got to do with it?”
Dr. Barnes attended Bay Cities Bible Institute from 1987 to 1988. In April 1989, he was ordained a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and appointed co-pastor of White Oak Grove under the guidance of his Pastor. He was called as the Interim Pastor of Abyssinian Missionary Baptist Church in November 1991, and was unanimously elected Pastor in January 1992. Since being elected Pastor his primary focus is saving souls and changing lives.
The work of pastoring is a calling of the Lord. Dr. Barnes has been tested and tried in many ways. Just as Nehemiah refused to come down off the wall, so has Dr. Barnes. He is ever faithful and understanding of the flock. He is much like the Prophet Nehemiah, a strong leader, a man of character, persistent, prayerful, a brilliant planner, organizer, and motivator. Dr. Barnes is a sacrificing person who takes his responsibility as Pastor seriously, many times missing meals and sleep to minister to God’s people. He is a genuinely humble servant of God and a passionate believer who is thoughtful, willing to listen, learn and to share his knowledge with others.
Dr. Barnes is in touch with God and uses his student outlook on life in studying the Word of God and in preparing sermons and Bible Study lessons. Under his leadership, Abyssinian has grown and prospered. Dr. Barnes has spearheaded the feeding ministry for 14 years. He is the third Vice President of the Bay Cities Baptist Ministers Union, and has worked with troubled youth through the Oakland Police Department.
Dr. Barnes attended the Sacramento Theological Seminary Bible College where he received his B.A. degree in May 2003. He also received his Honorary Doctorate Degree, September 2003, and his Masters in June of 2005, and will receive his Ph.D. in May 2007. Dr. Barnes is a progressive pastor, striving in the forefront carrying a banner for Jesus.