Coty Pinckney is the founding and senior pastor of Desiring God Community Church in Charlotte, NC. Listen in as Pastor Brian Norris interviews Pastor Coty about his journey into church planting and his experiences thereafter.
Coty Pinckney grew up in suburban Washington, DC, and attended Davidson College as an undergraduate. After teaching high school in Kenya, he studied the economics of poor countries at Stanford, earning a doctorate. Coty married Beth DuBose – a fellow Davidson alum – in 1979, and returned to Kenya in 1981 for three years. During this time, God used serious marriage problems to humble Coty and Beth, to bring them to their knees in seeing their own sinfulness and desperate need of God’s saving and sustaining grace.
In 1989, the Pinckneys moved to Williamstown, Massachusetts, where Coty joined the economics department of Williams College. Over the next 11 years, he taught, conducted research, and helped administer the college’s Center for Development Economics.
From the beginning of their stay in Williamstown, the Pinckneys were active in Community Bible Church. The elders asked Coty to join the preaching team in 1990. When the family returned to Kenya for the 1991/92 school year, Coty went five months without preaching. Here, for the first time, he felt a burning passion to preach, a passion he could not stifle. He then had the great privilege of preaching several times in his “home church,” Nairobi Baptist.
By the late 1990′s, Coty was an elder preaching almost 20 Sundays per year, had started expository.org, and was pondering his call to preach. He prayed much over these words of Martyn Lloyd-Jones: “The only man who is called to preach is the man who cannot do anything else…. This call to preach is so put upon him, and such pressure comes to bear upon him that he says, ‘I can do nothing else, I must preach.’” After attending the Bethlehem Pastors Conference in Minneapolis in 2000, Coty finally came to the point where he could do nothing else. He entered full-time ministry in July of 2000.
After an internship at Bethlehem Baptist, the Pinckneys spent the 2001/02 academic year as missionaries to Cameroon, where Coty and Beth taught at the Cameroon Baptist Theological Seminary. Shortly before returning to the US, Bethlehem Baptist asked them to consider planting a church in Charlotte. Coty and Beth moved to North Carolina in October, 2002, and began to build Desiring God Community Church.
In addition to planting DGCC, Coty has been instrumental in bringing the Perspectives on the World Christian Movement course to Charlotte, and continues to teach and to assist in coordinating that course.
Coty and Beth have six children: Erin, Jonathan, Thomas, Andrew, Matthew, and Joel. They have dedicated themselves to homeschooling their children throughout their years in the home.
Pinckney trivia: Once upon a time, Coty was a serious distance runner. He still holds a Davidson College school record, and ran a marathon in 2 hours and 22 minutes.
Beth is an avid gardener, and once ran a market garden in California. She writes the Ebenezer Stories blog, setting up stones in words and stories that mark God’s daily leading in our lives.