After 35 years of pastoral ministry, Pastor Terry Wolfe retired at the end of May.
Terry Wolfe was born in 1946 into a Dutch family from the Netherlands. Every Sunday you would find his family
attending the Dutch Reformed Church. It was during his younger years that he felt the Lord tugging on his heart to preach for God, so on many Sunday afternoons after church, he would go home and practice preaching.
Terry’s father would later go on to join the Seventh-day Adventist Church which would lead Terry to attend Grand Ledge Academy in Michigan and graduate in the spring of 1965. After academy he attended Andrews University for one semester. From that initial semester of college, Terry would describe his next journey of life as a time of running from the Lord. He worked in a hospital, served as an Army Medic in Vietnam, and married Judy on June 14, 1970.
He then started attending the Catholic church and headed back to college at Motlow State College in Tullahoma, Tennessee to play college baseball. A road trip with the baseball team brought Terry close to Southern Missionary College, where his brother John was attending and invited him to come visit the campus. That visit started the journey of moving back to what God was calling him to do—be a Seventh-day Adventist minister.
After a series of miracles Terry began studying at Southern, but that too was only for a short time. In that initial semester, he struggled with aligning his life to what he felt were high standards of the church and what it meant to be a pastor. He would once again leave college and run from the Lord and his calling.
After a 10 year journey and much growth in his faith, he and Judy returned to Southern. In 1985 while finishing up his studies at Southern, Terry started pastoring three churches in the Kentucky-Tennessee Conference. Over his 35 years of ministry, Pastor Wolfe and his wife Judy have also served in the New York and Iowa-Missouri Conferences. They have spent the last five years serving the Ava, Branson East, and Oak Grove Heights churches in Missouri.
The Wolfes have three grown children: Nathan, Kelly and Hunter.
Pastor Wolfe and Judy have demonstrated a strong passion for bringing people into a relationship with Jesus Christ and the Adventist message. It was a privilege to serve with Pastor Wolfe in the Iowa-Missouri Conference and I and many other pastors will miss his outgoing fiery personality at minister’s meeting.
I would like to extend my gratitude to Terry and Judy Wolfe for their many years of sacrificial service to Lord and His church. Although he is retiring, Pastor Wolfe will continue to follow his call to ministry by seeking to bring people into a relationship with Jesus through his passion of giving Bible studies.
Lee Rochholz is Ministerial director for the Iowa-Missouri Conference.