Pastor Ken Hauser retires after 40-year ministry at local church
Published 3:09 pm Thursday, June 9, 2022
Fellowship Community Church, Watauga, will have a special service Sunday at 10 a.m. to celebrate the 40-year ministry of Pastor Ken Hauser, who is retiring. Following the service a potluck meal will be held.
Fellowship Community Church was organized by Pastor Hauser in 1982, and he has been the faithful shepherd of the flock since that time. Hauser, who came to Elizabethton from Michigan, held the first service in the old Burgie Drug Store building in downtown Elizabethton. After a short time the church moved to the Wedding Chapel on N. Main St. Within six months property was purchased in Watauga and construction began on a new building.
Hauser recalls that on one Saturday, 50 men came to help the Yankee preacher build a church. He noted that on the one-year anniversary of the church, services were held at the new location even though the building had no windows or doors.
In the following years, a fellowship hall was added to the building.
“From its humble beginning the church has always been a loving group of sinners, saved by God’s grace, ready to accept anyone, not being concerned about anyone’s past, but concerned about their future,” said Hauser.
Under Hauser’s ministry, the church has sponsored 15 mission trips with nine churches and two houses built for pastors in Mexico. A house was built for an Indian missionary in Grants, N.M., and a roof put on a church in Tuba Ciy, Ariz.
One of the church’s ministry, which Hauser is quite proud of, is the senior ministry and the many trips they have taken. Started with a rented van, the ministry grew into a Freightliner bus. “Some of the most blessed services were held in that bus over a span of 22 years and on trips taken from Maine to New Mexico and the East and West coasts several times,” Hauser shared.
The pastor said that some of the most blessed and inspired services were those preached from the front porch of the church during the COVID-19 pandemic. During this time several people were added to the church family. Presently, the church is live streaming and broadcasting its services on radio as well as the in-church service. “That is a result of the pandemic,” he said.
Sunday is not only Pastor Hauser’s retirement day, but it is also the 40th anniversary of the church. “It has been great. God has given me a great life. He has supplied my needs as well as blessed my life with a loving, supportive wife, Del. He has permitted me to pastor 56 years. But, most of all God has given me the privilege of leading many to Him, and that has been my purpose throughout my ministry, and I give God all the glory,” said the retiring pastor.
As Hauser retires, Fellowship Community Church looks forward to a new and blessed future under the ministry of Paul and Bobbie Grapes.