Randy Smith returned to Faith Mennonite in 2018 to serve as interim lead pastor. An experienced pastor, Randy specializes in transition ministry. He is energized by helping churches in an interim grow stronger in healthy habits and in enthusiasm for their future as they envision the next chapter God has waiting for them. In the anticipation of 1 Corinthians 2:9, “No eye has seen. No ear has heard. No mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him.”
”My first rule of church is that church should be fun. When I moved to Kansas in 1976, I knew few people. But the people of Faith Mennonite quickly embraced me and became my family and home. It is a joy to return, all these years later, and serve this congregation. My hope, as Faith Mennonite looks ahead to its next chapter, is that it continues to embrace new people and be a family and home for them. Because church should be fun.”
Randy is married to Ann, a nurse for Grace Med. They have two adult children with families of their own. They live in a house built in 1900, so Randy enjoys projects on “this old house,” plus going to car shows, blues music, and solo camping when he can find the time.
Marshall Anderson joined the pastoral team as Associate Pastor in June 2017. While the team shares many functions, Marshall’s primary focus is with youth and young families, and the missional life of the church – which is a fancy way to say how we build healthy relationships outside the church walls.
Marshall and his wife, Lindsay, have three children. They moved to Newton from Fort Wayne, IN, where Marshall was pastor of North Leo Mennonite Church and a transitional pastor for Fairhaven Mennonite Church. While in Indiana, Marshall served Indiana-Michigan Mennonite Conference as a part of the Leadership Enhancement Team and was also a member of the Church Plant Network.
Marshall is a film buff and can quote lines from all different kinds of movies – a talent which is both useless and occasionally irritating. He also enjoys music and plays bass guitar and percussion. He plays golf, but doesn’t really qualify as a golfer. He enjoys losing golf balls.
Marshall has a heart for those who can’t imagine themselves fitting in at church. He believes God’s grace and love are greater than we know and everyone is welcome at the table. (Food. Marshall likes food too.) He is excited to be a part of the community at Faith Mennonite, and looks forward to continuing the work of building vibrant community.
Teresa Pickens joined the Faith Mennonite Church staff as Administrative Assistant in September 2015. Returning to her Kansas roots after living in Wisconsin for eleven years, Teresa enjoys her work at the church and counts it as one of her greatest blessings. Her primary function is to manage the day-to-day workings of the church office including bookkeeping, recordkeeping, website management, publishing weekly worship bulletins and monthly church calendars. She also serves and assists the pastors, council, boards, committees, and congregation as needed.
One of Teresa’s favorite Bible passages is Psalm 86 as it speaks of God’s mercy, forgiveness, and His awesomeness while it reflects her desire to walk in His ways and have her heart and life united with God’s will. It is Teresa’s prayer that her devotion to God shines through in all she says and does.
The mom of three adult daughters, Teresa loves spending time with family. In her free time, she enjoys woodworking and craft projects, sewing and needlework, reading, playing the piano and singing hymns.
Verda Deckert joined our ministry staff in 2009. She is a long-time Registered Nurse, graduating from Bethel Deaconess Hospital School of Nursing, Bethel College, and Wichita State University. After holding several different positions at Bethel Deaconess Hospital/Newton Medical Center, Verda taught in the Department of Nursing at Bethel College until retirement. She continues to work as needed in the preoperative/outpatient unit at Newton Medical Center.
Verda enjoys helping people discover how to work with their health problems, advocating for them during the stresses of illness and accident, and navigating the complicated health system.