About The Rural Pastors Initiative


Dr. Brad Smith

Dr. Brad Smith

Dr. Brad Smith is Director of the Rural Pastors Initiative, an ordained minister and licensed psychologist, and Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs at Belhaven University. He has over twenty years experience as a Christian counselor. In addition, he has developed programs for training and encouraging pastors in the U.S. and several other countries around the world.

Since moving to Belhaven, Dr. Smith has founded the Institute for International Care and Counsel which focuses on equipping and mobilizing Christians in the area of mental health.  Brad co-directed Belhaven’s 2016 Summit on the Church, Health, and Mental Health. He conducts trainings in Mental Health First Aid throughout the state of Mississippi. He and his wife, Amy, attend Common Ground Covenant Church in West Jackson.

John McCarty

Rev. Dr. John McCarty “Mac”

Rev. Dr. John McCarty “Mac” Mac is retired military, served as pastor of a Missionary Baptist in Pocahontas, MS for over fifteen years. He served as a primary instructor for Reformed Theological Seminary (RTS) Continuing Education for Pastor at Mississippi Valley State University for twelve years. Mac also served as Academic Dean of Mississippi Baptist Seminary and Bible College for eight years.

He currently a member of Pleasant Green Missionary Baptist Church, where he assisted with Preaching and teaching. Mac received a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Southern Mississippi, Master of Arts Christian Education, Master of Divinity, and Doctor of Ministry from Reformed Theological Seminary.

Perry McCall

Rev. Perry McCall

Perry has served as a rural and small town pastor for over twenty years serving churches in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Tennessee. He is currently the pastor of both Carolina and Carthage Presbyterian Churches of the Presbyterian Church in America, PCA.

Perry received a B.S. in Political Science from the University of Southern Mississippi and his M.Div. from the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and is currently pursuing the Doctor of Ministry from RTS. He served Southern Baptist Churches for over 10 years. Perry has also served as the Bible and Social Studies teacher at Leake Academy and as a Biblical Studies Adjunct Professor at Belhaven University.