Pastor John Vermeer has been an ordained minister since 1990. He received his Masters of Divinity degree from Westminster Theological Seminary California in Escondido, California in 1988. He received his Bachelors of Arts degree in history from Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa in 1985. Our pastor has served churches in Kansas, Iowa and has served Oak Glen since November of 2002. He and his wife Margaret have been married since 1986. They have been blessed with three sons and two daughters.
The pastoral ministry carries with it a manifold and varied dimension, with no week of ministry ever completely duplicating another. A particular week may include the visiting of the shut-ins and the sick of the church. Added to the week could be the instructing of those who are part of the church as well as those who are new to it. The pastor may be directed to draft correspondence, recommendations for members, or policy for the governance of the church. He may find himself among those rejoicing at weddings or commiserating at funerals with those whose loved ones have died. At various times he finds himself traveling to other parts of the area, the country or even the world to participate in regional and national meetings of the church, to serve as requested on committees that work for various educational institutions–schools, colleges or seminaries–and to encourage churches abroad with Christian instruction and fellowship. He plans for events on his calendar, and then he encounters issues that could never have been planned. It could be that he needs to travel hundreds of miles to visit those who are imprisoned but who have been freed spiritually to serve the Lord, or he may just travel around the corner to someone who needs both encouragement from the word and prayers of supplication. He may be asked to relate to those who are very young at a Vacation Bible School, join with high school students on a service project, share some time and fellowship with others at a fundraiser, a cookout or maybe even a ball field, where people might see on an essential level that their pastor is really no different than they are–someone who has been saved by grace just like they have been.
One calling that remains constant through the pastor’s ministry is his responsibility to serve and preach the word of God and the gospel of Jesus Christ to those who come to worship the Savior every single Sunday. He cannot take this task lightly as he acts as an ambassador of Christ in the worship setting, praying that he might serve well in this capacity and praying that those who receive this word might know its blessings unto God’s praise. Regardless of all the other matters that may arise from day to day and week to week in the life of the pastor, this ministry of God’s word continues to be his primary task.
It may look like the pastor serves alone in the ministry of the church when you come to this page on our website, but as you may have read on our home page, our entire congregation is called to be of service one to another: those who have been served the word are called to serve. No pastor could ever serve as he does were it not for the support and service of both the leadership and the membership of the church. The fellowship, generosity, and overall blessings with which God has endowed the Oak Glen congregation by way of the Spirit of Christ makes serving amongst this body of believers a true privilege, granted by God’s grace. We pray that the church of Christ will be such a blessing for you as well as you find yourself called to salvation in Christ, but also then as someone called to serve your Savior and his church—served with the gospel of Christ from week to week.