Pastor Steve Gaines

Dr. Steve Gaines has been the Senior Pastor at Bellevue Baptist Church in Memphis, Tennessee, since 2005. He earned his Bachelor of Science (B.S., 1979) at Union University, Jackson, Tennessee, and his Master of Divinity (M.Div. 1984) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D. 1991) at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas.

Brother Steve began pastoring churches in 1983 and pastored churches in Texas, Tennessee, and Alabama before coming to Bellevue. His primary ministry focuses are prayer and preaching. He served two terms as President of the Southern Baptist Convention (2016–2018) and has also served in other denominational positions and preached at a variety of denominational events at the local, state, and national levels.

Brother Steve has been married to Donna since 1980. Donna is a vital part of Bellevue’s ministry. She is a gifted Bible teacher, an accomplished author, and a dedicated disciple maker. She teaches women’s Bible studies at Bellevue, leads women’s discipleship groups, and teaches a high school girl’s Life Group. Steve and Donna have four married children and 16 grandchildren.

About Steve Gaines

  • Born: December 31, 1957, in Corinth, Mississippi, to Edgar and Dorothy Gaines.
  • Married: June 14, 1980, to Donna Dodds Gaines—Women’s Ministry, Speaker, Founder of ARISE2Read, Author of There’s Gotta Be More, Leaving Ordinary, Choose Wisely, Live Fully, and SEATED: Living From our Position in Christ.
  • Children:  
    • Grant Gaines: Pastor, Belle Aire Baptist Church, Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Married to Melisa. Five children.
    • Lindsey Gaines Wingo: stay-at-home mom. Married to Ryan Wingo, Minister of Worship, Prince Avenue Baptist Church, Athens, Georgia. Four children.
    • Allison Gaines Hill: stay-at-home mom. Married to Gentry Hill, a Southern Baptist Preacher. Four children.
    • Bethany Gaines Golding: stay-at-home mom. Married to David Golding, Engineer with Turner Construction Company in Memphis, Tennessee. Three children.


  • Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas (1991)
  • Master of Divinity (M.Div.),  Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas (1984)
  • Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Union University, Jackson, Tennessee (1979)
  • Dyersburg High School, Dyersburg, Tennessee (1975)

Church Experience

  • Pastor, Bellevue Baptist Church, Cordova, Tennessee (2005–Present)
  • Pastor, First Baptist Church, Gardendale, Alabama (1991–2005)
  • Pastor, West Jackson Baptist Church, Jackson, Tennessee (1988–1991)
  • Pastor, Lake Shore Baptist Church., Lake Dallas, Texas (1983–1988)
  • Youth Minister, Lake Shore Baptist Church, Lake Dallas, Texas (1981–1983)
  • Youth Minister, First Baptist Church, Milan, Tennessee (1978–1980)

Denominational Service

  • President, Southern Baptist Convention (2016–2018)
  • Chairman, SBC Resolutions Committee (2015)
  • President, Tennessee Baptist Convention Pastor’s Conference (2015)
  • President, SBC Pastors Conference (2005)
  • Preached SBC Convention Sermon (2004)
  • SBC Baptist Faith and Message Study Committee (1999–2000)
  • President, Pastors’ Conference, Alabama Baptist State Convention (1999)
  • Trustee, Union University, Jackson, Tennessee (2014–Present)
  • SBC Committee on Nominations (1991, 1999)
  • Books: Morning Manna, Pray Like It Matters, Share Jesus Like It Matters.

Contact us

We are happy to answer your questions and provide assistance. If you’d like to speak with someone over the phone, please call (901) 347-2000. You can also fill out our contact form using the link below.