The Rev. Nathaniel McMillan of Orangeburg recently addressed how churches were coping with the coronavirus emergency and the “new normal.”
His comments for a Times and Democrat story were included also in a national story from Lee Enterprises, parent company of The T&D, with McMillan stating that most ministers are being cautious about resuming in-person services amid the danger of spreading COVID-19. “It is a major awakening. It is really looking to the Lord for the next steps.”
He was addressing the state of church services in his capacity as pastoral coach and consultant for the South Carolina Baptist Convention. It was just one of many important roles for McMillan, 69, who died June 16.
He was a longtime member of the board of trustees of the former Orangeburg Consolidated School District 5, a member of the Orangeburg Ministerial Alliance and a pioneer in the Orangeburg County Community of Character campaign. McMillan also served as pastor and founder of Petra Ministries International, chaplain for the Oaks PACE Adult Day Care Center and member of the Community Engagement Committee of the Bootstraps Mentoring Foundation.
In the later role, McMillan gave of his time, talent and financial resources to support foundation activities, including its Fifth Sunday Service, which brought various churches and cultures together for an ecumenical service to support the foundation.
McMillan’s ability to be relied upon as honest and dependable led the Orangeburg County Community of Character initiative to honor him in 2019 for the trait “trustworthiness.”
“I've been in and around Community of Character for a long time and been instrumental in helping our school district to adopt all the character traits and to have all the character flags flying at all of our schools throughout our whole community. My whole investment is to help others to be encouraged. I think we have to continue to inspire others,” he said.
And inspire others he did, with an energy that was unmatched.
“My energy comes from seeing others blessed and encouraged by whatever I’m able to do through the gifts and talents that God has blessed me with to help them to have a better life. If I can effect that in any kind of way, that's what I've always wanted to do,” he said in 2019.
Toward helping people have better lives, McMillan was a force in Orangeburg as an advocate for social justice and racial reconciliation. He considered it a mission – a very important one in this community.
McMillan said of ministers coping with the coronavirus that they were following government guidelines, “but they are also listening to the Lord.” Through a lifetime of service, the Rev. Nate McMillan listened to the Lord and followed The Great Commission of spreading his word. May he rest in peace, having served well and positively impacting many lives.
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