Born and raised in Houston, Texas, Reverend Lionel Phillip Pointer, Jr., matriculated at Whittier College (California), Boston University School of Law (Massachusetts), and Washington Bible College (Washington, DC). He is the son of the late Pastor and Mrs. L. P. Pointer, Sr. of Greater Mt Olive Baptist Church (Houston Texas). He preached his trial sermon at Providence Baptist Church (Washington, D C), on December 15, 1974; was called to became the sixth pastor of the now 147-year old Round Oak Missionary Baptist Church (Silver Spring, Maryland) in August 1976, and; was then subsequently ordained at Providence. As Pastor, after preaching the 1977 Easter Sunday service, the Lord blessed, and 26 people joined Round Oak!
Pastor Lionel Pointer has continued as a tower of strength during his 40 years in the preaching ministry, and as he approaches 40 years of pastoring the historical 147 year-old Round Oak Church (aka The Oak). In 1981, he led the construction of a new church building and on the third Sunday in September, 1982, (less than one year later) the church family moved into the current beautiful brick building. In 1988, 1.33 acres of additional land were purchased.
During the mid-1990s, Pastor Pointer conducted intensive leadership training sessions leading the congregation in intensive methodical in-depth Bible study. These seminars entitled Now Open the Word (NOW) produced a clear purpose statement and God driven vision. Subsequently, five frontrunners were appointed to lead the identified ministries. Round Oak is purpose driven! Pastor Pointer also appointed the first Youth Minister. Amidst all the activities and responsibilities at The Oak, Pastor Pointer preached and ministered locally, nationally, and internationally (travelling to Israel, Jordan, Spain, Africa, Bahamas, and other lands) as an ambassador of Round Oak. Additionally, he preached the 20-year reunion of his Houston High School class. More recently, he was invited back to Houston, Texas and preached the 80th anniversary of the establishment of the Wheatley High School!
Pastor Pointer’s keen guidance and direction at the start of the 21st century, produced new ministries (e.g., Couples; Singles, Dance, Drama, Women, Men, and Professional Counseling). He also established special programs (e.g., Friend Day, Illustrative sermons) to bring people to Christ and church membership. Following his first illustrative sermon (2001), over 30 people came seeking Christ! Pastor Pointer’s ministry has produced countless sons and daughters; many have gone forth to pastor churches locally, nationally, and outside of the country. Last month, May 2015, The Oak welcomed another daughter in the ministry; and even today, we are expectant with new preachers!
In 2009, Pastor Pointer led the church in a massive three-tier renovation project. In 2011, he established and appointed the first Young Adult Minister. In 2013, the second phase of renovation was completed and today, in 2015, the church is undergoing the final phase of renovation – as souls continue to come to Christ! Pastor is a visionary leader and lives Philippians 4:13; which is the basis for the Round Oak Church Motto: “It Can Be Done!” Pastor Lionel Pointer is married to Dr. Michelle Phillips Pointer, who oversees the Professional Counseling Ministry. They have one son, Rev. Lyle Patrick Pointer, who received his Bachelor’s from Morehouse and Master’s from Duke University. He has served with his father, Pastor L. P. Pointer, Jr. as Minister of Young Adults since June 2011!