To be an effective preacher, teacher, or pastor today, one must have a heart for the people and love them as God loves us. God said he would give us pastors after his own heart (Jeremiah 3:15) and Zion truly has been blessed with an immense preacher, teacher, and pastor in Pastor Dr. Marshall F. Prentice.
Dr. Marshall F. Prentice is the Pastor of the Zion Baptist Church – a progressive, urban Baptist congregation in the heart of Baltimore, Maryland. His commitment to the enhancement of God’s Kingdom on earth has manifested itself in his loyal attention to the daily activities and services of the church on community development initiatives: senior citizens, youth empowerment, cultural awareness, homelessness, drug rehabilitation, transitional housing and mission/outreach activities.
Pastor Prentice is married to the former Elvira Johnson and they are the proud parents of three – Tonya, Preston, and Kevin. They are also the proud grandparents of two grandsons, Brandon Jamaal and Konner Anthony.
Pastor Prentice is a native of Pittsburgh, PA. He graduated from Geneva College with an equivalent of a double major, Elementary Education andTheology. He received his Master’s Degree in Counseling Education from theUniversity of Pittsburgh and his Master of Divinity Degree from the Samuel D. Proctor School of Theology at Virginia Union University, Richmond, VA.
He was licensed and ordained by the Victory Baptist Church in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, under the pastorate of Dr. Lehman D. Bates. He served as the Pastor of the First Antioch Baptist Church of Greensburgh, Pennsylvania for 7 years, before becoming the Under Shepherd of Zion in 1985. Zion has grown numerically and financially, but most of all spiritually.
Zion Baptist Church, led by Pastor, is committed to move forward in faith for the nurturing and expansion of its continuing Christian mission. It is his desire to demonstrate the love of God beyond the walls of the church. He was one of the founders and first President of Clergy United for the Renewal of East Baltimore (CURE), a faith-based community organization, with interest in the health, welfare, and spiritual being of East Baltimore citizens.
Pastor Prentice has held many positions since coming to Baltimore – Served on the Empowerment Team for the City of Baltimore; Past President of Clergy United for Renewal of East Baltimore (C.U.R.E.) and Past President of the Progressive Baptist Convention for the State of Maryland. He is currently serving as Co-Chair of Baltimoreans United in Leadership Development (B.U.I.L.D.) – Clergy Caucus. Among the many awards presented to Pastor Prentice –
- Ray of Hope Religion Award , presented by the Black Professional Men, June 2006;
- Excellence in Leadership, presented by the Fullwood Foundation, January 2006;
- Doctor of Divinity, presented by the Virginia Seminary of Lynchburg, Virginia, December 21, 1986; and
- Doctor of Human Letters, presented by the Eastern Theological Seminary, October 2000.
Pastor Prentice has preached the word in Africa, and continues to be invited to preach in distinguished pulpits throughout Maryland and other states. He stands firmly behind the doctrine of his favorite scripture – Romans 1:16 – “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ; for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also the Greek”.