Dr. Ralph Douglas West
Dr. Ralph Douglas West serves as founder and senior pastor of The Church Without Walls (Brookhollow Baptist Church, Houston, Texas). He first preached as a sixteen year old in his native Houston. The church began with 32 members and now embraces 24,000+ families meeting in three locations and conducting six services each Sunday. Dr. West is affectionately known as PAS.
Dr. West completed degrees at Bishop College, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and Beeson Divinity School, where he received the Doctor of Ministry Degree. He serves as Adjunct Professor of Preaching at the George W. Truett Theological Seminary of Baylor University. He has an abiding commitment to the church and the academy, relating with equal ease to both venues and using his influence to mentor ministers in both locations. He speaks perennially at colleges, universities and seminaries across America as well as at Regent’s Park College, Oxford University.
Dr. West’s preaching style includes careful explanation of Scripture combined with his signature ability to tell detailed, credible and indelible stories from contemporary life that enrich the sermon and relates to the congregation. He also makes penetrating and specific application of the text to his people. He does all of this while maintaining the vibrant preaching tradition of church and culture in an atmosphere of celebration.
Pas is a leader beyond his own church and serves on boards, agencies, trusteeships and committees at local, state and national levels. He is constantly in demand by fellow ministers for counsel and wisdom. On top of this, he pastors a very large church as if it were a much smaller church, standing with people in exceptional times of crisis. As one astute observer remarked, “He is unselfish with his time and utterly without self-regard
Through publications, television and the internet his messages are available across the world and are witnessed by thousands beyond his church each week. A perpetually demanded conference speaker, he has spoken multiple times at conferences such as the Hampton Institute, the largest gathering to hear preaching each year. From the pulpit to the lectern he is sought for his preaching gift.
Ralph Douglas West is the Pastor and Founder of Brookhollow Baptist Church, Houston, TX. From its initial membership of 32, Brookhollow Baptist Church has grown into a thriving congregation of over 24,000 families meeting in three locations. Along the way, because of the broad reach of its ministries in the Houston metropolitan area and around the world, Brookhollow Baptist Church affectionately became known as “The Church Without Walls.”
Pastor West holds a Doctor of Ministry degree from Samford University’s Beeson Divinity School, Birmingham, AL; a Master of Divinity degree with Biblical Languages from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Ft. Worth, TX; and a Bachelor’s Degree in Religion and Philosophy from Bishop College, Dallas, TX. Pastor West has also completed advanced studies at Cambridge and Oxford Universities and received an honorary D.Div. degree from the Interdenominational Theological Center at Morehouse School of Religion, Atlanta, Georgia and Paul Quinn College, Dallas, Texas.
Pastor West’s philosophy of ministry includes a belief that the church and the academy are mutually dependent upon one another. For the academy, the church provides the impetus for its work and directs its course. For the church, the academy illuminates its sacred text, informs its worship, and articulates its faith. Therefore, Pastor West integrates academic interest with pastoral concerns, a juxtaposition clearly reflected in his preaching and writing. Pastor West’s ability to connect the esoteric with the practical makes him a sought after speaker and Pastor West has lectured at institutions such as Princeton Theological Seminary, Morehouse College, and Samford’s Beeson Divinity School. Pastor West also serves as adjunct professor of preaching at Truett Seminary in Waco, TX.
Pastor West is the author of Finding Fullness Again: What the Book of Ruth Teaches Us About Starting Over, (B&H Publishing, May 2006). In 2008, Pastor West released Left Alone, a powerful book on finding strength for life’s mysteries, impossibilities, and uncertainties.
He is married to Sheretta Machell Grays West and has two sons, Ralph Douglas II, and Ralpheal Daniel.