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Former local pastor elected national president of Missionary Church

Saturday, July 20, 2013 - 4:09 am

A former Fort Wayne pastor known for his work to strengthen and support Christian nonprofit organizations has been elected as the new national president of the Missionary Church.

The Rev. Steve Jones was elected president Tuesday and commissioned Thursday during the denomination's national conference at the Grand Wayne Convention Center in downtown Fort Wayne. The denomination is based in Fort Wayne, with its main office at 3811 Vanguard Drive near Fort Wayne International Airport.

Jones, who will serve a four-year term as president, was senior pastor of First Missionary Church, 701 W. Rudisill Blvd., from 1999 to 2007, it says in a biography on the denomination's website, Since spring 2007, Jones had served as the denomination's Central District superintendent, with responsibility for churches in most of Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin.

While still at First Missionary in Fort Wayne, Jones founded the Love In Deed ministry in July 2002 and has served as its executive director until recently, the bio says. The nonprofit organization works with Christian nonprofit groups to help them improve their leadership and effectiveness.

He also was active in the community with ministries such as Allen County Right to Life and Associated Churches of Fort Wayne and Allen County.

In 2008, Jones helped Love In Deed launch its Sharehouse program, which accepts merchandise from retailers and manufacturers and distributes it to area churches and nonprofits, his bio says.

Jones worked with Brotherhood Mutual Insurance to develop the IntegrityWatch Project, which helps protect men and women from Internet pornography, the bio says. He also helped start the Pastoral Learning Institute, an online Missionary Church program to prepare second-career pastors for ministry.

Jones succeeds the Rev. Bill Hossler, who served as Missionary Church president for the past 12 years.