HENDERSONVILLE, Tenn. (Christian Examiner) -- Pastor David Landrith passed away at his home in Hendersonville, Tenn., this morning, Nov. 18. He was serving and leading Long Hollow Baptist Church, a congregation of about 7,500 members.
Landrith was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, colorectal melanoma, in March of 2013. Despite several surgeries and clinical trial medicines, the disease continued to spread through his body, including his lungs and brain.
Although the effects of his condition and the treatments were debilitating, Landrith led his church to baptize 1,000 new believers last year. It is the first Southern Baptist congregation in Tennessee to reach that mark.
Under his leadership, Long Hollow grew from an initial 300 attenders to expand to a congregation meeting on five campuses, with ministries across the globe.
"He was a pastor everyone could relate to," said childhood friend and Long Hollow Pastor of
Spiritual Development Jeff Lovingood. "He was also a friend that challenged you to be all that
God made you to be."
"I've never known a pastor so loved by the people he serves," Lance Taylor shared. He is executive pastor at Long Hollow and was Landrith's college roommate.
"He had a God-given ability to keep people together," he said. "In all the growth and changes through the years, God used him to keep our church moving together in the same direction. In the 16 years I served alongside of David at Long Hollow, we enjoyed exceptional unity because of his leadership."
Allen Lindsey, a church member and close friend, echoed the description of humble leader.
"He's the best natural leader I've ever known," he said.
Landrith is survived by his wife, Jennifer, and their three children: Rachel (25), Sam (20), and Josh (18); his parents, Horace and Shirley Landrith; and his brother, Hal Landrith.
Funeral service details will be released later, and the church is directing the community to its website for additional information.
Compiled from material provided in a Long Hollow Baptist Church press release.