Approximately 20 percent of all U.S. Foursquare ministers are over age 65; 10 percent are under age 35. Together, this unsung minority makes up nearly 30 percent of all Foursquare ministers. Here are 14 of these heroes who are making a difference every day by following God’s call on their lives.
Walter (Tom) Snipes
New Hope Worship Center (Concord Foursquare Church)
Years of teaching, speaking, mentoring and counseling have not slowed Walter (Tom) Snipes, age 80. This former professor—and former head of the Department of Psychology at Appalachian State University—has spent his “retirement” in full-time ministry with New Hope Worship Center, where he strives to minister to older saints by planning occasions for them, and meeting their spiritual and physical needs. “I have no doubt that God is not finished with me yet,” he says.
Destiny (Rapid City 2 Foursquare Church)
Rapid City, S.D.
Dyani, 32, dreams of more unity among local believers and is unarguably doing her part to unite the kingdom. She recounts the time when a girl who hadn’t been to church received the baptism with the Holy Spirit, “and was so excited to teach and encourage fellow children.” Dyani says this event still “touches [her] heart in the most profound way.” With much of her time spent leading summer camps, children’s church services, holiday programs, VBS and more, this mother of five is passionate about connecting with others who are serving and leading.
Carol Stream, Ill.
At 101, Cecelia Evans is Foursquare’s oldest living ForeRunner. Cecelia gave her life to the Lord at age 16, responding to an Easter Sunday altar call in one of Sister Aimee’s famous services. Cecelia has worked in His service from that time until now, and much could be said of her life as a pastor and matriarch. She worships God through serving others, studying Scripture, playing in a community bell choir and engaging with Christ in whatever work He has for her. She confidently encourages others to do what they believe God wants them to, and nothing less.
Life Church (Antelope Valley Northside Foursquare Church)
This senior pastor, husband and father of two says that being a young leader can be difficult, especially if you feel the need to perform or meet imposed expectations. Tim, 28 in October, encourages leaders to strike a balance between their unique calling and the foundation laid by others. His church plant is using creative methods to bring others into discipleship; projects such as the Laundry Love Project are generating life-changing connections to and within the city.
The Church On The Way (Van Nuys Foursquare Church)
Van Nuys, Calif.
Widely renowned throughout her decades of ministry in The Foursquare Church, Jean Darnall, now 90, came to know the Lord in the 1920s through an issue of Sister Aimee’s Bridal Call magazine. From time spent diligently serving with Sister Aimee (think dramatic Sunday productions, healing services and more), to pastoral roles alongside her late husband, Elmer Darnall, she has been busy both stateside and abroad taking the gospel to the world. Recently retired from the pastoral staff at The Church On The Way, Jean has a 10-year plan to write books and develop a ministry presence online.
Life Fellowship (Charlestown Foursquare Church)
A talented worship leader, Kate Neilsen, 26, coordinates multiple worship teams—mentoring others while creating a powerful worship experience for the congregation. Kate’s focus and love for worship have helped create and foster an environment at Life Fellowship that welcomes God’s presence and releases His touch upon those who attend.
The City Church (Redding Central Foursquare Church)
Jarred, 27 in October, strategically organizes leaders in the fields of youth, young adult and children’s ministries. During the past three years, he has humbly led an annual NextGen conference. Tapping into the expertise of these NextGen leaders, Jarred resources pastors and other ministry movers and shakers—encouraging these influencers to carefully, intentionally listen to the next generation. Jarred is noted for his powerful behind-the-scenes impact and gracious attitude.
New Hope Hilo Hawaii (Hilo Foursquare Church)
Helen Cooper, 86, has been facilitating a care group through New Hope Hilo Hawaii since 1990. Additionally, she leads a group of seniors in Tai Chi, a martial art that relaxes the body and joints. The group, which is held at the church, is open to anyone in the community. Helen, an excellent example of loving people through one’s talents and interests, started practicing Tai Chi only 18 years ago.
More People You Should Know
New Life Community Foursquare (Oxnard Northeast Foursquare Church)
Krystal Sanford, 26, ministers through worship arts. Each Sunday, people who do not yet know Christ but who love music connect to Christ in transformative ways through New Life’s worship experience.
Living Way Fellowship (Littleton Foursquare Church)
Highlands Ranch, Colo.
An advocate of intergenerational discipleship, Peter Henderson, who will turn 30 in October, has a vision to lead his 30-year-old congregation to become even more of a “sending church.”
Evangel (Roanoke Foursquare Church)
Ken, 74, serves not only as a senior pastor, but also as administrator for Evangel Child Care Ministries. Additionally, he jumps at the opportunity to train young leaders, including local Ignite Academy students hungry for hands-on training.
Living Word Fellowship (Oak Harbor II Foursquare Church)
Oak Harbor, Wash.
Janelle, 33, offers oversight and direction to all ministries at Living Word. She says, however: “I know I am called to raise young leaders. It’s what I bleed. I love this generation, their intensity to follow Jesus, their innovative spirit—their passion to start something from nothing.”
Richard and Ida Whittet
Kalispell Foursquare Church
Retired ministers Richard, 77, and Ida, 74, are reaching their community through hobbies such as music and graphic design. The Whittets consider themselves life-long learners and look for everyday ways to bless others.
Foursquare Missions International
Sheila, 74, teaches a class for new believers, as well as an adult Sunday school class in Spanish at Lifegate Foursquare Church (Downey Ave/Paramount Foursquare Church). For more than 20 years, she served as a missionary to Chile, and to this day she works with missionaries and ministries in Latin America.