Stephen Fountain and FBC Buford are passionate about connecting with the community


BUFORD, Ga. — Stephen Fountain, lead pastor of First Baptist Church in Buford, is a winsome and caring pastor who has led his church to become a loving and compassionate fellowship. He has successfully connected his church with the community because he is intricately bonded with the community himself.

Fountain describes his early years at Buford after transitioning from being the student ministries pastor at First Baptist Church in Atlanta. Fountain says the church suffered the loss of several young people in a short amount of time. “We had more deaths among our children, youth, and young adults than anyone could possibly process in a short period of time.”

“Sometimes God uses tragedy to create harmony,” he explains. “I tried to just be present and love those families and our community well. Our hearts were forged to the heart of Buford as we navigated those tragedies together.”

The shared grief united the church and led to an outpouring of comfort to the community. “The church truly became a place of refuge for the bereaved,” Fountain says, “And a haven of peace and reconciliation for those who needed acceptance and love.”

Fountain describes one of his primary goals when he became pastor of the Buford church as integrating the church into the life of the community. “Our church has been a vital part of our community since 1873, but I was told that it would be difficult for me to connect with this town of now approximately 18,000 people,” he explains. “I was determined to tie my family to the heart of the community, so I said, ‘yes’ to everything.”

Consequently, Fountain has become a substitute teacher at least once a week in the local school system. He admits, “It is the easiest job in the world. All you really must do is just love kids.”

Fountain is also the chaplain of the Buford High School football team and has led the church to feed the coaches’ families every home game and continued the tradition of feeding the team every year during preseason workouts.

An avid sports fan, he announces the boys’ and girls’ basketball games, shows up for the school’s Fellowship of Christian Athletes meetings, and coaches baseball in the city’s sports program.

When not doing those, he serves as the chairman of the Executive Committee of the Georgia Baptist Convention. And yet, Fountain still finds time to prioritize his family, including his wife Erin and two children, Emma and Drake.

Fountain is so willing to connect with the community that he has given his cell phone number to seemingly every family in the city of Buford.

Eddie Banks, a lay leader at First Baptist Church says, “There are not enough words to describe the heart of Stephen Fountain. He cares deeply for God’s people, within our church family, the Buford community, and across the globe.”

“Stephen rejoices with those who rejoice and mourns with those who mourn, as the Apostle Paul states in Romans 12:15,” Banks continues, “He is truly available to those who need him in times of sorrow and is always ready to celebrate their accomplishments in times of joy.”

Fountain says the church staff’s unity is evident in its work, and in the results of its ministry. “Our staff works together beautifully and uniquely complements one another’s strengths in ministry,” he explains.

Jared Thompson, executive pastor and teaching pastor, concurs, “We have a collaborative style of ministry. We trust each other and help each other.”

“I preach frequently,” Thompson continues, “and for Stephen to give me as many preaching opportunities as he does is evidence of his selflessness.”

That teamwork, unity, and passion to reach the community has led the church to grow significantly. In recent years, the average attendance of the church has increased from 240 to 580.

The impact of the church, its pastor, and its staff can be found practically everywhere that the community’s children and students gather. By reaching out to the children of Buford, Fountain and his church are significantly touching the lives of entire families.