Bro. Philip Jerome Dougan, 81, passed away Saturday. The loss of his sermons, his passion, his wisdom, his friendly nature, and his humor are being felt by many.
Dougan was ordained in 1962 and dedicated his life to pastoring. At the time of his death, he was a member of Cornerstone Baptist Church with pastor Kevin Burden.
“I was his pastor for three years,” said Burden. “He was a dedicated servant of the Lord. He loved everyone and always had a good word to say about everyone. He was genuine through and through. He has pastored at many churches and each one of those has always welcomed him back. He has pastored at every Baptist church in Warren County, and most of the neighboring counties.”
Burden has been asked to officiate Dougan’s funeral service at McMinnville Funeral Home on Wednesday at 1 p.m.
“He loved to sing. He loved to preach. He was a terrific guy,” said Burden. “I’ve been given the responsibility of giving his service and it’s going to be hard. He was what you call a pastor’s pastor. When a pastor was having trouble, you could go to him and get a word of encouragement and good, solid, sound advice. He had a lot of wisdom. A pastor’s pastor is a rare breed. He’s was that kind of guy. He will be greatly missed.”
Dougan was well known for his singing and piano abilities, says Burden.
“He played the piano and sang as well. At one time, his ambition was to become a concert pianist. He went to school to do that. However, he ended up in the ministry. He still loved to play the piano and sing. He taught piano lessons. There are many, many people in our community who have learned to play the piano under his instruction.”
Dougan was a pastor at Gath Baptist Church.
“He was pastor at Gath many years ago when our children were small,” said Gath deacon Bill Cope. “Everyone liked him. One of the things he did, even though it didn’t turn out like we thought it would, was teach our two daughters how to play piano. He was a good piano player, singer and preacher. We bought a piano and they started taking lessons. However, it turned out they weren’t going to be into that, but he tried.”
Dougan was well-known for his sermon where he drew similarity between people’s lives and the Titanic, in that people are either saved or lost in their voyage. He encouraged people to choose the first. Cope says the last sermon he attended of Dougan’s was the one about the Titanic.
“He turned the Titanic into a good sermon,” he said. “There was a list of the ones who died and the ones who didn’t die. The list was marked ‘saved’ and ‘lost’ and that’s what he used in his message. It was a powerful message.”
Dougan will be buried at Gath Cemetery in a spot he picked out for himself. Cope, who was with Dougan when he made the selection, says his only concern was for his wife, Norene, and making visiting him easier on her.
Longtime friend Tommy Lusk knew Dougan for approximately 30 years.
“Bro. Dougan was well known, well respected and a man of faith to God’s word and to preaching and teaching His word,” said Lusk. “He was also a man of humor and great musical ability. I call it great. At our pastors’ breakfasts, which he attended every time he was able, he would come in singing some hymn or song in a deep baritone voice that was loud and commanding. Yet, he would have that Bro. Dougan grin on his face. He was all the time cracking us up with, usually, a corny-type joke.”