After a time of prayer and discernment, Riverside’s Leadership Team has nominated nine Riverside members for nine spots on the Pastoral Search Team. You can find their pictures and biographies below.
On Sunday, April 9, following the second worship service, there will be a brief congregational meeting to vote on the Pastoral Search Team. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Riverside’s Leadership Team at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can find an outline of the Pastoral Search process here.
At the meeting on April 9th, the congregation unanimously approved all nine of the following people for the search committee.
Ralph Moller (Staff)
Ralph and his wife, Teresa, moved to West Lafayette from San Francisco, California where Ralph served as the Senior Pastor of Lifehouse Covenant Church. Prior to serving Lifehouse, Ralph was the Senior Pastor at Heartland Covenant Church in Ripon, California and planted Westhigh Church in Cary, North Carolina.
Ralph earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Washington, a Master of Divinity degree from Bethel Theological Seminary, and a certificate in Spiritual Direction from North Park Theological Seminary. He has been ordained to Word and Sacrament in the Evangelical Covenant Church since 1995.
Before experiencing God’s call into pastoral ministry, Ralph spent several years working as a Project Engineer for Exxon and 6 years on Navigators campus staff at University of California San Diego.
Ralph and Teresa (a Registered Nurse) have been married for over 30 years and have three children in their 20’s who live in different parts of the United States.
Even though she spent much of her childhood in church, it wasn’t until she was in her 30’s that she fully surrendered her life to Christ.
Rhonda has been married to Wayne for 26 years and between them, they have six children and sixteen grandchildren.
Rhonda has served as Women’s Ministry Director for six years at Riverside and now serves on the Women’s Discipleship Team. She taught a women’s bible study in her home while living in China for three years. She is also active in women’s bible studies and a couples Pod.
In her free time Rhonda loves to cook, travel, stay active (snow/water ski, running, exercise) and hang out with her grandkids.
Dustin Grove, his wife Stacy and their three children have been a part of the Riverside Covenant Church family since 2015.
Dustin grew up in Lebanon and graduated from Ball State University’s College of Communication Information and Media.
Dustin currently co-leads a weekly family Pod and also enjoys teaching the 5th and 6th grade Sunday RiverKids class.
A resident of West Lafayette, Dustin anchors the morning news on WLFI-TV and teaches in the Brian Lamb School of Communication at Purdue University.
Katrina Elliott (Staff)
Katrina Elliott was born and farm-raised in Tipton County, graduating from Tri-Central High School (2000). Feeling misguided by her affinity to mathematics, she attended Purdue University, where she began her major in Electrical Engineering. After working a summer as a counselor at Camp Tecumseh, she changed her major and graduated with a degree in Secondary Math Education (2004). Another change instigated by her summer at camp was the introduction to a handsome British man called Tom. Katrina and Tom were married a year later (2002) and began their lives as one at the blessed place they met. They have continued to live and minister as a family at Camp Tecumseh since then.
Upon graduation from Purdue, Katrina took a job teaching Algebra and Geometry at Lafayette Jefferson High School, where she taught for one year before taking leave to have their first child, Sophia (2005)…a fiery redhead. After two and a half years as a family of three, the Elliotts welcomed their son Oliver (2007). Katrina enjoyed the honor of being a stay home mother to two kids for nearly eight years, when God shook things up by adding a third child, Tre (2012), into the mix through an organization called Safe Families for Children. What was initially supposed to be a four month stay turned into guardianship after six and a half months in November of 2013. There’s never a dull moment at the Elliott’s!
One of Katrina’s greatest passions is teaching. Outside of the math classroom, she has focused her teaching on empowering followers of Christ “to live a life worthy of the calling,” a life of the abundance He has called us to. Through her ministry to the counselors at camp and her leadership position in the Mothers of Preschoolers (MOPS) group at Covenant Church, the Lord has refined the passion of teaching in her life to be focused on women. Katrina has a great enthusiasm for connecting women…through connections comes encouragement…through encouragement comes growth…through growth comes an outpouring. Yeah. Katrina is excited to see the outpouring of God through the women of Riverside.
Steve grew up in Lafayette and attended Purdue University where he received his degree in Electrical Engineering Technology. He also earned a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Indiana University and has worked for Caterpillar for the last 10 years. Steve started regularly attending church in college with his girlfriend Rachel, whom he married in 2001. Steve and Rachel have two sons, Isaac (12) and Caleb (8). Soon after getting married, they wanted to find a community of fellow believers to share life with while growing deeper in relationship with God. It was at this point Steve and Rachel started attending Riverside Covenant Church. While at Riverside, Steve has been actively involved with the worship team, Pods, served a 3 year term on the Leadership Team and has previously served on a Pastoral Search Team for Riverside.
Nicole was born in Kalamazoo, MI and has lived in several places prior to moving to Indiana with her husband (Richard) and two boys (Sam and Evan) in 2006. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Child Psychology, Master of Arts in Spiritual Formation and Leadership, and is a Certified Spiritual Director. She works as a Spiritual Director and as a co-instructor for The Intimacy Project, a program for Christians who desire to dive deeper into the process of transformation in Christ.
Nicole grew up knowing about God but truly began to experience His love for her in young adulthood. She has a passion for helping people overcome the barriers that stand in the way of a flourishing, life-changing relationship with the Lord. Nicole is grateful to be part of discipleship ministries at Riverside and in the community. Since coming to Riverside in 2014, she has enjoyed participating in women’s discipleship ministry and Pod, praying for Sunday services, offering prayer meditations on Sunday morning, and facilitating a Spiritual Formation Pod.
Nicole loves sharing her life with her family and enjoys spending time with family and friends, hiking, relaxing in nature, playing board games, traveling, and reading good books.
Kurt grew up in Butler, PA, the youngest of 5 children. Raised in a close knit family, which included working together in a family business. Not knowing any different until adulthood, just how blessed he was to spend so much time with his parents. Kurt graduated from Slippery Rock University of PA with a teaching degree and later earned a master’s degree from the University of Northern Colorado.
Kurt met his wife Missy, who is from Chicago, while at Northern Colorado. They have three children; Brandon, Ethan, and Amanda. Having the entrepreneurial spirit, possibly from his parents, Kurt and Missy started an insurance agency in 2002.
Kurt’s desire is to use his vocation as a platform to share God’s love and be a blessing to those he encounters. Kurt and Missy moved to West Lafayette in 2001, just as Riverside was being launched by ECC. The former churches they attended in Maryland and Kentucky were church plants and they always loved the focus on outreach and discipleship of a young church, so they felt right at home with Riverside. Over the years, Kurt has served and participated in a variety of ministries with Riverside; community service projects, men’s Bible studies, Leadership Team, Pastoral Relations Committee, soap ministry, children’s ministry, youth ministry, and probably a few others…
His favorite verse is Psalm 62:5 (NLT), “Let all that I am wait quietly before God, for my hope is in Him.”
Elizabeth Fassel (Leadership Team Chair)
Elizabeth grew up in West Lafayette and graduated from Purdue University in 2002. Growing up, she attended church on a regular basis with her family. Elizabeth married her best friend Adam in 2009, which is when she began developing a personal relationship with God. Her desire to know God on a deeper level grew stronger with the birth of her two children. Since attending Riverside Covenant Church, Elizabeth has enjoyed participating in the women’s Bible studies, her Pod, and volunteering in the nursery. She is excited about how she has seen God work in her life during the past several years.
While not working, Elizabeth loves to read, watch movies, and spend time with her family. She enjoys spending time outside, and feels the most relaxed when camping with her family.
Dennis is from Frankenmuth, Michigan and grew up in the Lutheran Church attending Lutheran parochial school until 6th grade. Just after Dennis turned 16, he lost his father to cancer, helped care for his legally blind mom, and became head of the household. Dennis attended Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, Michigan and was active in Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship. He felt called to the ministry after his first Urbana Conference at the University of Illinois and continued his education at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary earning a Masters of Divinity.
Dennis pastored in New York and Illinois for over 30 years. During his bi-vocational pastorate, he was transportation Director for Riverdale Schools in Port Byron, Illinois.
Dennis is married to Roxie and they have five children and five grandchildren.
After Dennis and Roxie retired, they felt called to West Lafayette to be near to family and open to God’s assignments. Dennis participates in a men’s Monday night Pod, a co-ed Pod, the prayer team and the Pastoral Relations Committee. He has a passion for trusting God and learning to live more like God would desire.