Pastor Dezo

Rev. Dezo Schreiner is originally from the beautiful Caribbean country of Haiti. She moved to Lawrence, KS in 2011 for advanced schooling. On the night of her arrival, she quickly learned to love K.U. Basketball. She grew up with eight siblings. As a young girl she organized church services for her siblings. Dezo's passion has always been to work with people, to proclaim the gospel, to work for social justice, to heal souls and bodies, and to create community. She earned her Masters of Divinity from Central Baptist Community Theological Seminary of Shawnee, KS in 2017. Dezo exhibits a contagious joy to everyone she meets as well for the gospel which she naturally expresses to everyone through pastoral ministry. Jesus taught us a way of love, grace and forgiveness; and that is how Dezo lives her life. Dezo says, " I live my life by the motto Jesus Christ stated in John 13:35, this is how everyone will know you are my disciples, if you have love for one another." She is an encourager, a visionary, teacher and a prayer warrior. In her spare time, she goes on long walks, road trips, window-shopping, or reads a good book. Dezo's ministry in our church is through worship leadership, preaching, pastoral care, teaching and working with our children, youth and young adults.

In 2018, Dezo married Andy Schreiner, together they have one set of twins, Benjamin and Charlotte and a son named Enzo.

Pastor Steve

Rev. Dr. Stephen D. Jones began his ministry at First Baptist Church of Kansas City, Missouri as a pastoral intern in 1969, while a student at William Jewell College.  He then entered Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School in Rochester, New York and after graduation, began his pastoral ministry at the First Baptist Church of Boulder, Colorado in 1972.  He later served churches in Ohio, Philadelphia, Detroit, Seattle, St. Louis, before relocating to Kansas City in 2011.  He was called to the pastorate of First Baptist Church in October of 2013 and today serves as co-pastor with Rev. Dezo Schreiner.

Steve is the author of eight books.  Two of his latest books were published in 2021: "Galusha, Crisis and Courage in a Civil War Pastor," (Trafford) and "Learning Jesus," (Wipf and Stock).  He earned the Doctor of Ministry degree in 1981.  For four years, Steve served as the President of the Baptist Peace Fellowship of North America, and for two years served as co-chair of MORE2 (Metropolitan Organization for Racial and Economic Equity).  

Steve's wife, Jan, grew up in this church.  They have two young-adult children, Brian (Dayna) and Janelle (Dwight), and two granddaughters, Brielle and Aria.  

Steve's ministry in our church offers administrative leadership, preaching, worship leadership, and pastoral care.

Pastor Stephanie

Rev. Stephanie Parham has worked full-time as a microbiologist, while at the same time earning her Master's of Divinity degree from Central Baptist Theological Seminary (CBTS), which she completed in 2022. She was ordained with an American Baptist recognized ordination through the Great Rivers region by our church in September of 2022. Also, in 2022, Stephanie married James Parham in a ceremony in our church. She has three children, Joe, Remy and Cartier and three bonus children Justice, Jeremiah and Charisma. Today, Stephanie's ministry is focused upon global peacemaking through the Buttry Center for Peace and Non-violence. She has led workshops on peacemaking in the USA, in Nicaragua and in Bangladesh. Stephanie and James have a home here in Kansas City but primarily reside at their home in Maryland. Stephanie has served on our pastoral team for nearly nine years and has left a indelible mark upon our congregation and many of our members.

A Warm Welcome

First: Welcome!

First Baptist Church is a community of welcome. We welcome people every Sunday to our worship services. Some come for one week – some return week after week. You’ll find a WARM WELCOME at First Baptist. 

We hope also that you will enjoy visiting this website. You’ll find pastoral articles and reflections, printed and audio sermons, and lots of information. If you travel around our website – you’ll learn a lot about our church and our people.


Second: Try Us Out!

Our church is friendly, but you won’t be under any pressure and you can choose to participate in any way that feels comfortable to you. The best way to determine if First Baptist Church is a “fit” for you – is to come and try us out! There are many ways to become involved – even in one-time or short-term ways. We are an active, mission-focused church.

Our Sunday School Classes meet every Sunday morning – for all ages at 9:30 am. All are open to visitors and they are a great way to develop relationships with our people and learn more about our congregation. Our worship service begins at 10:50 am in the sanctuary.


Third: Receive Our Invitation!

Our invitation isn’t just to attend – it’s to JOIN US on this journey of faith to which we feel called. We offer a congregation centered in faith in Jesus Christ, ready to live the life his Good News represents, and eager to become the Beloved Community in Greater Kansas City and around the world.


Welcome! Try Us Out! Receive Our Invitation to join us on our journey of faith at First Baptist Church!



Rev. Dezo Schreiner, Rev. Dr. Stephen Jones

and Rev. Stephanie Parham