Leadership and Staff
Hi, there! I was born and raised “down under” in the beautiful country of New Zealand. I grew up on the family farm and trained primarily as a shepherd of sheep. Growing up in a Christian family, I rejected the Bible’s message of salvation through Jesus Christ alone, believing that I was able to stand on my own two feet without any help from God. However, by God’s grace, at 18 years of age I was dramatically saved from a lifestyle of absolute hopelessness brought about by my own rebellion and pride.
Since then, God’s saving grace has brought many blessings to my life including my dearest friend and wife, Barby, and three incredible children, one son-in law, one daughter-in law and four wonderful grandchildren, Whitaker, Thaddeus, Rosemarie and Epaphras (Rusty for short). God’s grace has sustained me through many trials, and taught me that my life is totally in His control, and that I exist for His glory alone.
Six years after coming to know Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, I was called to full-time Christian ministry. This has included three years studying and serving at “This is Life Ministries”, an evangelistic Christian ministry; five years as a youth pastor at Havelock North Bible Chapel; six years as a Church planter and pastor of Grace Family Fellowship; and more recently, four years at The Master’s Seminary and Grace Community Church to complete the Master of Divinity program.
I thank God for bringing me to Hickman Community Church in 2007. I love the people here, and find my greatest joy in teaching God’s Word to open hearts. My passion in pastoral ministry is to know God and make Him known through the accurate exposition of the Bible which is God’s holy inspired Word to mankind!
I was born and raised in a Christian home in Long Beach, California. Like many others who are raised in a Christian home, it is difficult to pinpoint the exact date of one’s conversion. While I am not sure the specific time that the Lord regenerated me, what I can say for sure is that “my justification has taken place because my sanctification currently is”.
After graduating High School in 1998, I went to The Master’s College and majored in Biblical Studies with an emphasis in Youth Ministries. I began serving as a youth pastor in my home church after I graduated in 2002. Through this time the Lord was shaping me and helping me understand my call to pastoral ministry. I soon realized I needed more training if I was going to be the most effective tool for the Lord as I could be. I could think of no better seminary than The Master’s Seminary and I enrolled in 2005. While at TMS, I began dating my wonderful wife Kim, “a lily among thorns” (Song of Solomon 2:2). We were married in 2006 and now have four adorable children.
Looking back I can see the Lord’s goodness, patience, and faithfulness throughout my entire life. In His goodness He has given me wonderful blessings and revealed His kindness to me. In His patience He has brought me through sanctifying trials and immaturity. In His faithfulness He has always led me to the people He uses to grow me, and places He has for me to serve.
As a friend of mine says, “it’s His plan and our privilege”. It is my joy to serve the Lord and His people here at Hickman Community Church.
I was born December 1940 in Montreal, Canada, and I moved to the U.S. at about 9 years of age.
I had some Christian upbringing at a young age in the Methodist Church. We moved about in my youth quite a bit, attending thirteen different schools, but never getting settled in a church.
I was called by God to saving faith in Jesus Christ at an older age, and serving Him is now my desire. Serving God for His glory and to do His will fills my time here on earth and at Hickman Community Church. Praise God for His mercy, love and saving grace.
I was born on October 14th 1952 in San Jose, California. My father moved our family to Hickman in 1962 and opened the doors of Simon’s Cabinets and Store Fixtures. As a young lad until I graduated from high school, I worked in the family business. My father expected his boys to do this.
Upon graduation “Uncle Sam” called me, and I proudly became an 82nd Airborne Soldier in the United States Army. Moving away from home for the first time and jumping out of air planes seemed like a good thing to do at the time. I was stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina for 2 ½ years where I met this “Southern Bell”, the most beautiful girl in the South, and I knew I could not come back to California without her. I asked her to follow me and she did (I don’t know why, but she did). Sylvia and I were married on July 13, 1974.
I went to school on the GI Bill to focus on police science. I was sure I did not want to become part of the family business, but God had other plans for my life. A job opportunity at a dual vocational institute opened up and I thought it would be a good avenue to get some experience in the prison system, but God had other plans for my life.
One night I was attacked and stabbed five times by a prisoner which caused me to rethink if I even wanted to pursue a career in police work. I went to work for my dad as a temporary means to meet the needs of my family and have been there for 36 years. Like I said, God had a better plan for my life.
In 2013, Sylvia and I will celebrate our 39th wedding anniversary. God has blessed us with 3 children and 8 grandchildren. If God had not set his love upon us we would not have had what it takes to commit to each other as husband and wife for a life time.
As a young child I attended the Hickman Church. In High School I attended youth group at East Side Church of Christ, in Turlock, where God planted seeds through the remnant of faithful saints. When I went into the military, and for the first 12 years of my marriage, I pushed God out of my life and lived for myself. At the age of 33 I found myself spiritually bankrupt and in desperate need of a Savior. God broke my hard heart and gave me a heart of flesh. He opened my spiritual eyes which allowed me to turn from my sin and turn to a life that would begin to hunger and thirst for righteousness.
My purpose in life now is to glorify God and enjoy his sweet fellowship each and every day of my life. The praise of man has lost it flavor but the words of my Savior “My good and faithful servant “ mean everything to me.
The Lord currently has me serving on the deacon board and in the food pantry ministry which is a tremendous evangelistic platform. I love to serve in this ministry because I have the opportunity to introduce lost souls to Jesus Christ.
My life verse is : Psalms 31:14-15 “But as for me, I will trust in you o Lord, I say, “you are my God” my times are in your hands: deliver me from the hand of my enemies and from those who persecute me.”
CHAIRMAN OF THE DEACONS
Hello, I was born in Idaho and was raised in a Christian family. By third grade I had lived in 8 of the western states as my father was in the logging industry. Due to the non-Christian attitude in California schools, in 1963 my father moved the family back to Idaho where we could attend schools where the teachers were mostly Christians and where we could attend Christian High School.
While we were in California we attended a Nazarene church and it was at an evening service there that I realized my need for a savior and surrendered my life to Christ.
During my Jr. High and High School years I had input from numerous Godly men and women whose influence still affects me today. I went on to the United States Military Academy where I was active with the Navigators in Bible Study and where I met my wife Nancy to whom I have been married 38 years.
God has been merciful to us in many ways, including our four children who are all married and walking with the Lord and our 10 grandchildren. We have also been granted the opportunity to serve in several churches over the years. Serving here at Hickman has been joyous and we look forward expectantly to the years ahead, especially with new young families joining with us to learn the complete Word of God.
SECRETARY OF THE DEACONS
Hi, my name is Branden Schell. I was born and raised in Turlock CA. I spent my early years in the Church of Christ. I didn’t fully understand sin and my need for a Savior until I was in my early twenties.
I joined the college group here at HCC and was challenged by the Word to deny myself and live fully for Jesus. I accepted Christ as my Savior and was baptized shortly after that, at the age of 22. God is changing me daily, and my desire is now to serve Him and the church. I enjoy being at church and spending time with my brothers and sisters in Christ overseeing the nursery ministry, and chairman of men’s ministry.
I married Tai, my high school sweet-heart, six years ago. We have three beautiful blessings from the Lord – Josiah, Norah and Olive.
Hello, my name is Mike Souza. I have been in Waterford for 56 years. Most of my life is a Living example of the description given in Proverbs 21:24. “Scoffer is the name of the arrogant haughty man who acts with arrogant pride.” By the grace of God I came to realize that my sinful nature was going nowhere. I started going to HCC and learned more of God’s word. I received the gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ, now his transforming power continues to change my life.
Jackie and I have been blessed with 38 years of marriage. We have three children, Amy (Thane ) Ty (Jessica) Trevor (Gina) 7 grandchildren, Ethan, Avery, Hadley, Grace, Barrett, Calvin and Bodhi. I thank God for my Hickman Church family. I give oversight to the practical operations of service setups, event planning.
Hello! While growing up in a church-going home in Waterford, CA, I was encouraged to ask Jesus in my heart at a young age to ensure I will go to Heaven after I die and be with family forever. Eager to do so, I soon got baptized around age eight with the church youth group.
For the next 13 years my life looked exceptional to others by being respectful and polite externally. However, the truth was I was living a double-life by being a complete hypocrite putting on a show.
Just before my 22nd birthday while running away from my messy life of sinful pursuits God convicted me of reality: I was living a lie. I was trusting my eternal destiny in a selfish prayer that I said as an eight-year-old boy… trusting in church attendance, and that I was a good person. The reality was that there is none who does good (Romans 8:9-20) and the one who practices sin is of the devil (1 John 3:8) and all liars, will have their part in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death (Revelation 21:8). I needed Jesus Christ who died and bore God’s wrath in my place so that I may live eternally with Him in Heaven.
Since being born again by God’s grace, life has been radically different! I have been a member of Hickman Community Church, growing in God’s Word, repenting of sin and desiring to live and serve my living God and Creator, Jesus Christ. Currently God has me serving in the Food Pantry feeding the needy with food for the stomach and Gospel Truth for the soul.
God has blessed me with the crown to my head, my excellent wife, Catherine whom I love and cherish. We have one child so far, our daughter Chloe May.
Welcome to Hickman Community Church!
I was born in Libertyville, IL. I attended grade school at Southern Baptist Church, in San Jose, CA. It was there that I accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as my personal Savior, thank you God. At the very young age of 17 I joined the Navy; it was there that I began to truly understand what it is to serve. Going to third world countries and seeing the joy we brought to communities just by building, painting, playing games and giving them food. God is so Amazing, and I thank him for showing me how serving others brings me more joy than shaking the hand of the President of the United States, although it was an honor to do that as well.
God has truly blessed me; I served with the singles ministry at Big Valley Grace in Modesto, CA. It was there that I met my beautiful wife Jamie, and together we have five incredible kids; Nicole, Stephen, Melissa, Shawna and Justin. It is amazing what God does in your life when you deny self and serve him. I don’t serve to get to heaven; I serve because I’m going to heaven, because of what my Lord and Savior did on the cross for me. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. Ephesians 2:8-9.
Hi, my name is Josh Pritchett. I was born in Salem, Oregon in 1974, raised in southern California, and spent my later high school and college years in the San Francisco East Bay Area. The Lord blessed me with a Christian home growing up. My home life largely centered on the church’s life, which is a principle I now instill in my own family.
The Lord brought me to saving faith in Jesus Christ at a young age and gave me a love for His people. He has given me both the opportunity and ability to serve in many areas of the church in the different places I have lived, primarily in music and youth ministries.
It is my joy to currently be serving as worship leader at Hickman Community Church. The Lord drew me to live and serve in Hickman in 2000. I was studying to be a doctor of chiropractic in San Jose but He had other, better plans. He has since blessed me with two boys – Noah and Micah. I look forward to your family joining ours here at Hickman.
I am married to my husband, Bob and we live in Hickman. I have one married son who lives outside of the area. I grew up in Waterford. I was not raised in a Christian family but at a young age I had a desire to attend church. However, I lost that desire during my teenage years and went my own way for many years until, after desperation and seeing my own sinfulness, I cried out to God for salvation. I started attending Hickman Church and have been here ever since.
I have been faithfully serving the Lord at Hickman Church, as their secretary, for more than twenty years. I love, and find great joy, in serving the body of believers here at Hickman.