A celebration on earth and in heaven

The room was full, buzzing with excitement over a celebration about to take place at First Baptist Church in Malakoff.

Casey Perry—a retired pastor, longtime friend and supporter of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention, and FBC Malakoff member—slowly made his way down into the baptistry to kick off the celebration. Then, one by one, a line of his great-great-nieces and nephews—six total and ranging in age from eight to 13—stepped down into the water.

All six had recently made professions of faith and wanted to be baptized not only together, but by “Uncle Casey.” So, under the water they went: first Annie, then Peyton, Tatum, Jaxtyn, Levi, and finally, Gunnar. “For we are buried with Him in baptism,” Uncle Casey said each time, “and arise to walk in newness of life.”

Just a day earlier, a different room at the church was full and buzzing with excitement over a different kind of celebration—a party honoring Perry’s 90th birthday. Nearly 100 family and friends gathered in the church’s children’s building to honor a man who has faithfully continued to serve the Lord into his ninth decade of life. That’s what brought Perry’s great-great-nieces and nephews to town, traveling not only from the Dallas area, but from Lubbock and Colorado to get there. 

Perry said he was grateful for the birthday party and thrilled to have the opportunity to baptize his six young family members. “It was a great experience,” he said.

Quite a way to celebrate a 90th birthday, huh, Casey? 

“Well yeah,” Perry said affirmatively, “I guarantee it!”

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