Meet Our Pastor

2006 0618 003Rev. Ted Weis is pastor of the Little River Congregational Church.

A 1983 graduate of Ohio University (B.S. in Organizational Communications) and a 1995 graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary (ThM), Ted has served our church since 1996. 

From the pulpit, Ted shares messages that are faithful to the truths of Scripture and practical in application.

Around the church, Ted is personable and comfortable working with children, youth, adults, and seniors.

In the community, Ted is a member of the Little River Lions Club. He is the past president of the Little River Community Library and was a committee member on the first board of the Little River Community Fund.

Professionally, Ted is a member of the Evangelical Theological Society and a certified Prepare-Enrich marriage and pre-marriage counselor. Since 2008, he's been an adjunct instructor in biblical studies in the theology-ministry department at nearby Sterling College.

A native of Cincinnati, Ted met his wife Melissa on the campus of Dallas Seminary. Melissa is a graduate of Southeast Missouri State and holds a Masters of Art in Biblical Studies from Dallas Seminary.

Ted & Melissa married in Dallas in 1993. They have four children: Julia (deceased, 4 days), Jenna (age 14), Valerie (age 10), and David (age 9).

Ted loves "music of all kinds" and managed a music retail store for six years, near the campus of Ohio University, before answering God's call to full-time ministry. He plays a Taylor ("the only kind to play") 410ce acoustic guitar for fun and pleasure.

His other interests include golf, the Cincinnati Bengals, the Cincinnati Reds, and community theater.

Testimony of Pastor Ted Weis 

2006 0618 011My parents raised me and two younger sisters in a loving, stable home in Cincinnati, Ohio. Every Sunday (except the morning our cat caught a squirrel and brought it inside the house) we participated in the life and liturgy of Zion Lutheran Church. As a junior high student, I thought God was a celebrity. I knew Him, but He didn't necessarily know me. But in 9th grade, a friend invited me to McDonald's and shared with me the yellow "4 Spiritual Laws" book. It was then I discovered that God desired a personal relationship and called for my response to Christ's work. Over french fries and a coke, God became real as I asked him to be my Savior.

During my college years at Ohio University, through involvement with Campus Crusade for Christ, I learned from friends like Robert Gulley and Dave Stuart the spiritual disciplines of a daily quiet time, prayer, and sharing my faith. Upon graduation in 1983, the Lord led me to take a mission trip to Yugoslavia and the 1984 Winter Olympic Games. Through conversational English at caf├ęs and in people's homes, God confirmed that He really could (and did) use me.

Life after college boomeranged me back to Athens, Ohio for six years. These were exciting years for my faith. I bore witness for Christ in unlikely places. I worked as the manager of School Kids Records. I taught junior high Sunday School at Christ Community Church. I also co-hosted with Greg Tomko the "Sunday Offering Show," a Christian rock music show on the secular station WXTQ-FM. Everything was grand-and then I attended my church's revival.

On the last night, the preacher began, "I don't have anything to say, but I do have two questions. Do you love Jesus? If so, will you do what He says?" That was his entire sermon. If I ever heard the audible voice of God, it was that night.

When I got home, I called my Aunt Ann-a mentor in the faith-and told her, "I've got good news and bad news. The good news is God called me tonight to go to seminary." Auntie replied, "Praise the Lord! What's the bad news?" I said, "I don't want to go." What Auntie said next I've never forgotten, "You know Ted, you don't have a choice. You have to go." For about a year and a half, I tried to persuade God that He picked the wrong guy. Finally, I relented. In the fall of 1990, I entered Dallas Theological Seminary.

While God was renewing my mind, he was also renewing my heart. At seminary, I met Melissa Ellen Clare, who earned a Master of Arts in Biblical Studies in 1992. With great joy, she became my wife on June 12, 1993. We view ourselves as partners in the ministry.

In the spring of 1995, Chuck Swindoll shook my hand and handed me a ThM diploma. In due time, a small, rural church in central Kansas extended a call. On Easter of 1996, I became the pastor and teacher of the Little River Congregational Church (UCC).

Soon after we came to our church family, our family at home started to grow. On November 1, 1996, our first daughter was born-Julia. But four days later, she died unexpectedly; an autopsy revealed a severely deformed heart. In our grief we discovered (in the words of Gerald Sittser) "grace disguised." Our marriage grew stronger and our bond with the church deepened. Since then, God has renewed our joy three-fold with Jenna (8), Valerie (5), and David (3).

In the many years that we have labored here in Little River, God has graciously used us to bear fruit for Him and strengthen His church with truth and love.

God is writing a great story in and around me. It's hard to know what will happen around the bend, but we do know this: The story has been pretty good so far!