I was born to a family that strived to be like Christ. Anytime the church doors were open, my family was there serving. As a child, I knew all of the Sunday School answers. I thought I was the greatest. When I was still very young, I asked my mom how to ask Jesus into my heart and have a relationship with him. I understood that I need Jesus to save me from my sin. I accepted Christ as my Savior and was baptized shortly after at First Baptist Church of Arnold.
My mom homeschooled me and my five siblings. As I look back on my time in school, I couldn’t be more thankful for my parent’s obedience to God in homeschooling us. We learned so much from God’s word daily that it sparked my interest in studying the Bible. As I entered into the youth group at Faith Baptist Church in Festus, my understanding of how sinful I am increased and I realized that I didn’t have a relationship with Christ. I committed myself to pursuing Christ in a relationship and following after him. I sensed God’s calling to ministry and my youth pastor poured into me to search out that calling and pursue it.
In the last few years God has changed my life in many different ways. The Gospel of Jesus became real and encouraging to me. I interned with Global Encounter Ministries for the last three years and met my beautiful bride to be. In December of 2016, I graduated from Missouri Baptist University with a Bachelors in Christian Ministry. God has used this time to open my eyes to the power of the gospel. The gospel is not just for the Church, but the church is to proclaim the gospel. I was to proclaim the gospel in everything I did.
God has continued to use me and bless me for His glory. Ashley and I are excited to serve and be used by God to further His kingdom.
Melissa was born in the state of Idaho but being a Pastor’s child moved to Missouri in 1989. Growing up in the ministry, she has always felt a call to serve the church, whether it was preaching like her Daddy or playing the piano like her Mommy. At a young age, she felt the call to music, but being a female, was discouraged by most that ministry was her true calling.
In the summer of 2000, she went on a teen camp with the youth of Fellowship First Baptist Church. It was there that God called her to live a life wholly devoted to Him. Feeling convicted that she needed to stop “playing church” every Sunday, she dedicated her heart and life to being completely devoted to God and to having a personal relationship with Him.
Meanwhile, she continued to pursue music, trusting that God would reveal his plan to her in His own time. She slowly began leading worship as an adult in youth services and at youth events. Eventually, windows of opportunity were opened and she soon found herself leading congregational services as a backup worship leader. It was then that she knew she was always called to be a worship leader, even though she had been told most of her life that it would never happen.
In January of 2012, Melissa became the official Worship Leader for Fellowship First Baptist Church. Her job not only consists of leading the church into Christ centered worship every Sunday morning and evening, but also to direct the church choir for special events and services. However, what she feels is most important is to teach people that worship is not simply a set of songs that are sung on a weekly basis while standing in a pew. Worship is a lifestyle; a daily commitment to show reverence and honor in everything we say and do to a holy and just God. This is the true act of worship.
Melissa and her husband have two very rambunctious boys that keep them busy when they aren’t serving at church.
Kris grew up in Arnold, Missouri and attended Starling Road Baptist Church as a child. She was saved and baptized at the age of 13. She has served in the church office for nine years and teaches first and second grade Sunday School. She enjoys the children and loves watching them grow and learn about Jesus. One of the things she loves about teaching children is their openness-you never know what you are going to hear!
Kris has two grown children, a son-in-law and a daughter-in-law. She hopes for grandchildren to spoil some day; for now she has her golden doodle, Lola, to spoil.
Marietta grew up in Crystal City Missouri and was raised in the Catholic faith. She broke away from the Catholic faith when she got married at the young age of 17 in the Christian Church in DeSoto, Missouri. She attended the Christian Church for approximately one year and was baptized. She fell away from the church, and after 25 years of marriage, it ended in a divorce. This tragedy in her life is what led her to
started seeking Christ again and searching for a church home. She started attending the First Baptist Church in DeSoto, Missouri after a friend invited her to Sunday school class. She found Christ and realized the promise he made in Hebrews 13:5, “I will never leave you nor forsake you “was really true. She says “He has been there for her all the time, during the saddest and most troublesome time in her life there were only one set of footprints, because it was then that he carried her”. Recently she was asked, so tell me who are you? Don’t tell me what’s going on in your life, but tell me who you really are. After thinking about it she said, “I am a sinner saved by the Grace of God.” We all go through trials in our life it is easy to take the wide path of destruction, but she thanks God she is choosing the narrow path to eternal life.”
Marietta has been blessed with two sons, two daughter-in laws and four grandsons. Larry Pitzer married to Amanda-Lee Burda who has two sons Ethan and Jacob and Brian Pitzer married to Jennifer Francis who has two sons Tyson and Brantley.
Marietta became a member of the First Baptist Church in DeSoto and was baptized again on Easter Sunday of 2005. God blessed her life again when she married her second husband, Dean Johnson, here at Fellowship First Baptist Church on 09/24/11. The two met while participating in the singles ministry at the FBC in DeSoto . Marietta became a member of the FFBC by letter on 09/18/2011
Marietta has been blessed again with two step-daughters, two step son-in laws and five step grandchildren. Carmen Johnson married to Joshua Flowers and has two children Trista and Bryce. Rebecca Johnson married to Joe Simino and has three children Kadence, Kaylee and Klan.
Marietta says, “She is so thankful God sent his son to die on that cross to bear her sins and then arose the third day to give her eternal life, even though she does not deserve it”. She is also thankful and blessed to be a part of such an awesome church family here at Fellowship.
Marietta started her bookkeeping career in 1993 until present. She has again been blessed with this job as Financial Secretary here at Fellowship First Baptist Church.