About Our Church

Pastor Russell Jones

Pastor Russell came to First Baptist on April 1, 2021. He and his wife Victoria (and Victoria's father Paul Schwanz) moved to Pierre from Belton, Texas. 

Russ took a rather unusual path to pastoral ministry, to say the least. The son of a Baptist deacon, Russ practically grew up in the church; unfortunately, like many young people, he drifted away from church as a young adult and stayed away for twenty-five years. At forty-six, Russ had an epiphany and came to his senses, realizing that no matter how far he’d run, God was with him still. His wife Victoria was very supportive and they began searching for a church home the very next day.

Soon work took Russ, Victoria, and their children from southwestern Ohio to College Station, Texas where he started teaching Sunday School and working with leadership committees and other “behind the scenes” work at First Baptist Church of College Station. The drive to learn more and better minister to that Sunday School class were the catalyst that drew him to begin taking seminary classes and eventually (Russ can be a little stubborn) accept his calling to pastoral ministry at the age of 50. (It seems that everyone had known but him for some time).

Family and career changes brought about another move that precipitated Russ and Victoria planting Mosaic Fellowship in Belton, Texas with the help of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, the Baptist General Convention of Texas, the Bell Baptist Association, and Freedom Road Biker Church as sponsors. Mosaic Fellowship was deliberately planted in the poorest part of Belton in an attempt to reach the poor and the marginalized, which made ministry there…different.

Until recently Russ's full-time job was teaching 6th grade English in Killeen, Texas and Victoria was a church secretary at Heights Baptist Church in Temple, TX (where Russ also spent some time as Interim Youth Pastor). They have three children, all adults: Kayla, a Navy veteran attending nursing school in Ohio; Mandi, lives and works in the Killeen area; and Taylor, who is living in Los Angeles trying to get into the entertainment industry as a scriptwriter/producer. 

Victoria has three cats (they’re definitely hers – they only tolerate Russ because he feed them half the time) and Russ has an AussiePoo puppy (Australian Shepherd/Standard Poodle mix) named Buckeye with whom he is quite enamored – he’s an ornery rascal but cute as a bug. 

 

Moderator
Esther Burket

Church Clerk

 Laurie Feiler

The Finance Department oversees the ongoing financial program of the church. The Treasurer, the Financial Secretary and a small committee meet regularly to make recommendations concerning any financial issues for the congregation.

Ron Baumgart - Treasurer
Lois Sivage - Financial Secretary
Paula Weeldreyer
Dick Howard
Dave Kruger

The Worship Department oversees all functions related to Sunday worship. Some of the goals are to foster and oversee special celebrations and seasonal worship opportunities, nursing home worship, and any other worship opportunities it desires to make available to the congregation or public. 

Lori Hall - Worship

The Christian Education Department plans and sets policy for the educational programs of the church; Sunday School, Vacation Bible School, Children's Church, and Youth Ministry.

Cindy Kemnitz & Delcie Hall - Christian Education

The Missions Department promotes the knowledge of and the support of the various mission fields, programs, projects, or needs.

Pat Weeldreyer - Missions

The Evangelism-Shepherding-Membership Department develops programs to maintain a high spiritual life within the church and to bring non-believers to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. Summer Camping Weekend, End of the Summer Carnival,Christmas and Easter outreach events are all just part of the ministries the E/S/M department sponsors each year.

Maxine Tessier & Dick Howard - E/S/M

The Evangelism-Shepherding-Membership Department develops programs to maintain a high spiritual life within the church and to bring non-believers to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. Summer Camping Weekend, End of the Summer Carnival,Christmas and Easter outreach events are all just part of the ministries the E/S/M department sponsors each year.

Renee Osterkamp - Fellowship

The Fellowship Department plans and sponsors various activities and functions on a regular basis creating opportunities for congregational relationships and fellowship.

Nick Osterkamp - Properties

The Property Department provides for and oversees the maintenance and improvement of church buildings, furnishings, and grounds.