It is easy to bemoan the state of the church and the wider world as we consider the reality of racial division and political polarization. It is much more difficult to help pave new pathways for us to walk together, as Tony Lowden has done throughout his life. In this episode, we discuss Tony’s inspiring rise from poverty in North Philadelphia to his work in government, education, and criminal justice reform, in addition to pastoring churches across the demographic and denominational spectrum. The episode concludes with a moving tribute to President Jimmy Carter’s faith as the 39th President faces his final days.
Tony Lowden is a well-rounded, godly man. Reared in North Philadelphia in a single–parent home, he understands the plight of poverty and illiteracy. He believes that in order for young people to become productive citizens in their communities, they must have a firm biblical foundation and a good education.
Tony double majored in Economics and Government at the University of Southern California while on an athletic scholarship. He earned his M.Div. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.
Tony founded and served as Executive Director of STONE Academy, an after-school enrichment program for at-risk children in the Macon-Bibb County area. He has served as pastor at Strong Tower Fellowship and youth pastor at Lundy Chapel Missionary Baptist Church in Macon. He has also served as youth director at Fellowship Bible Baptist Church in Warner Robins as well as in other leadership capacities in numerous civic organizations in Middle Georgia.
Tony’s community involvement has included the Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission, the Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development Board and the Board of Directors for the Center for Racial Understanding. He is a 2011 graduate of the esteemed organization Leadership Georgia as well as 2014 graduate of the inaugural class of the Bailey-Sullivan Leadership Institute of the Black Alliance for Educational Options (BAEO). Tony is also a member of American Enterprise Institute (AEI) Leadership Network Fall 2016 class.
In 2012, Tony was appointed by Governor Nathan Deal to serve as a commissioner on the State Charter School Commission and continues to serve in that position. Formally the project coordinator for the Justice Reinvestment Initiative, Tony served as the Director of Faith and Justice Initiative for the Governor’s Office of Transition Support and Reentry. Today, Tony Lowden is pastor of Maranatha Baptist Church in Plains, Georgia where he has the distinct honor and privilege to serve as the spiritual covering for a mighty congregation with a big heart including President Jimmy Carter. Tony concurrently serves as chaplain for the Secret Service in Southwest, Georgia. A loving father to Tabitha Lowden. Tony is married educator and performing artist G. Pilar Lowden.