VINCE DERR, CONNECTIONS PASTOR
I’m originally from southeast Iowa and grew up in a typical small town of 800. I am the youngest of four half siblings, three brothers and one sister. My only memories of church were from a VBS I went to and learned from Chaddar Chipmunk. The first Bible I saw opened in my home was mine when I was in college.
I went to Central College, GO DUTCH! I got assigned a Christian roommate and I wasn’t excited about what that might mean. Luke and I got along just fine, and he had a lot of Christian friends. His friends became my friends. Suddenly I found myself surrounded by real Christians and not the stereotypes I had in my mind. They believed, really believed and lived it out. Luke and our friend Jake would be gone about three times a week leaving me alone and bored. I figured out they were going to worship and small group. I eventually got up the nerve to ask if I could tag along to small group and they said yes. Their hospitality and kindness made a huge impact on me. Spring semester started, and they decided to work through Crazy Love by Francis Chan, the first Christian book I ever bought. As I read and listened to them talk about God and the Christian life, the Gospel began to grow in my heart. They revealed that I hadn’t rejected God but a cultural caricature of God. On January 21, 2011 at Winter Jam, I heard and accepted the Gospel.
I graduated from Central College in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in religion. I then went on to Seminary in Holland, Michigan. I attend two years of in-residence learning, left to join Blessed Hope Community Church, and continued my education online. I served as the Youth and Children’s Pastor at BHCC for over two years before coming to SRBC.
Victoria is my amazing and wonderful fiancé; our wedding is in October. We met online through Eharmony and hit it off so well that we got engaged three months later. We are ecstatic about joining this community and beginning our lives together. We enjoy spending time together going on all sorts of adventures, reading, and talking to each other in horrible fake accents.