Wallace to give last service Sunday
By Kristen Miller
DASSEL, MN - After just two-and-a-half years at Dassel Church of Christ, Pastor Billy Wallace will give his last service Sunday and return to his previous church in Louisiana.
Wallace began at the nondenominational church back in 2008, coming from a rural church in Monterey, located east central Louisiana.
For Wallace and his family, the decision to leave the church wasn’t an easy one.
When asked by the Louisiana church to come back, Wallace and his wife, Lori, took about a month to pray about it. They also went back for a visit.
“We felt it’s what God wants us to do,” Wallace said.
“We’ve had a really good experience here the church has been really good,” Wallace said, adding that he just couldn’t “shut the door” on his previous church.
“It’s been a tough decision because it has been good,” he said.
He shared some of the highlights he experienced during his time at the Dassel church.
Wallace particularly enjoyed the first-ever Dassel Church of Christ Bible Slam this past August. Not only was the event fun, but he was also able to meet a lot of people in the community during the wrestling event.
Being involved in DC United, a collaboration among the various youth groups in the DC area, has also been a highlight in Wallace’s time in the Dassel community.
Just working with the church and getting to know the members has been a highlight for Wallace, as well. “They are really good people,” he said.
During his time with Dassel Church of Christ, Wallace said he has assisted in making the church more community-focused and more service-oriented than in the past.
Some examples of this are a free spaghetti dinner for the community around Christmastime, and family fun night/movie night at the church.
He has also worked cooperatively with the Covenant Church in Dassel to put on AWANA, a Bible-based children’s program.
Wallace is confident the church will continue focusing on how it can impact the community as a whole.
“I think the church has an awareness of it now. They have seen people come out . . . it’s ingrained in our church now,” Wallace said, noting it took a lot of volunteers to make each event happen.
Wallace is going to miss working with Dave Herring, the worship leader, who will be taking the reins until the church finds a new pastor.
“He is very capable at what he does,” Wallace said of Herring, who joined in November 2009.
“He has been a great help to me in the church . . . I feel like I’m leaving the church in good hands,” Wallace said.
As the church elders look for a replacement, Herring will be flying mostly solo, taking on much of Wallace’s responsibilities.
“Even though this will be hard for our church, we’ll be OK,” Herring said, explaining that it’s difficult for any church when leaders move on.
Wallace is also going to miss Minnesota summers, and the close friends he has made here, as well as Twins games. He and his wife already have plans to go to a Twins vs Rangers game in Texas this spring.
Wallace’s last service at Dassel Church of Christ will be Sunday at 10:30 a.m. A fellowship dinner will follow and vistors are welcome.
Finding a replacement
Because the church is made up of many young families, the church has decided to put its focus on finding someone who can minister more to families.
“We’re not going to hire a traditional senior pastor,” Herring said, explaining that preaching would be shared.
“There is a big need for someone with expertise [in the area of young families],” he said.
In a church that already considers itself nontraditional, “this will make us even more so,” Herring said.
Currently, the pastoral position is posted on ministry staffing websites, and the church has received several resumés.
The church will take its time to ensure it finds the right person for the job.