Immanuel Lutheran Church welcomes new pastor
By DAVID J. HARDIN
On Sunday, Immanuel Lutheran Church of Copperas Cove welcomed its first full-time pastor in two years.
Pastor Tobin Scott took leadership of the church after recently graduating from Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, Mo.
The installation service was held in the church and about 100 members of the congregation attended, as well as pastors from other area Lutheran churches. Gospel readings were read and hymns were sung, and the Rite of Installation of Pastor Scott was performed by visiting Rev. John Heckmann.
Scott’s friend, the Rev. Richard Mayerhoff of Rockwall, Texas delivered a sermon.
“I have always had a strong desire to be around people, to communicate with people, to help them in their time of need,” said Scott. “What led me here was this was the first assignment that the church gave me right out of the seminary.
“I think that this is a really good fit, my personality and the congregation’s personality. It is fantastic that a youth group was started here, and to watch and to be a part of that will be wonderful because I have six children of my own, and I know that four of my children will definitely be involved in the youth group in the next few months and for years to come.”
Scott said one of his visions for Immanuel is to be a big part of the community here and for members of the congregation to reach out to those who are hurting or who are in need.
Pastor Wilbern Michalk has served as the interim part-time pastor of Immanuel Lutheran for the past two years.
“It has been a pleasure serving them for two years, but it is time for them to have a full-time guy here on the scene that can take these people and lead them, and can really help them reach out to the community,” said Michalk.
Wade Lewis is the president of the Immanuel Lutheran congregation and talked about what it means to have a full-time pastor on board now.
“We have had Pastor Michalk serving us faithfully for the past two years, as a part-time vacancy. Being part-time kind of holds the church back actually, because there is so much work to be done,” Lewis said. “Now with a full-time pastor, we can do more outreach. We really hope to reach out to the community, and become very active in the community, and draw as many people back to church as we can.”
Scott’s wife, Alicia, talked about the family’s journey with him through seminary completion.
“We have been on this journey for long time. Tobin started the seminary in 2003, but had to leave in 2004 due to health issues and he did not return until 2012. We were not sure if we he would ever get back to the seminary, the family has had a lot of emotions throughout the journey,” she said. “Getting this call for Tobin to serve this congregation here in Copperas Cove was great for us as a family, because we are in Texas and we can be close to our daughter and grandchildren who live in Brownwood.
“I like this town because it has a small-town feel, and is close to a lot of other big towns.”
Youth group member David Pomeroy Jr. is excited about having a new full-time pastor.
“It is a great relief knowing that we are going to have someone who will stay here and guide us in the right direction. He has many great ideas, and will help us grow. People have been emotional about not having a full-time pastor, and it is good to get those emotions out. We now have someone permanent, and it is a very good thing for our church.”
Scott was raised in the Ozarks of Missouri and spent his early education in auto mechanics and drafting. He also was a journeyman plumber, and under a family friend, started his own construction company. He and his wife, Alicia, have been married for 30 years.
In 2003, the family moved to St. Louis so that Scott could attend Concordia Seminary. Two children later, he decided to take a break and went on an eight-year sabbatical in San Angelo, Texas. While there, he got a job working for SKG Engineering, and would later work for the Texas Department of Transportation.
Scott returned to the seminary to finish his education, graduated from the seminary in May 2017 and was ordained in June, after which the church’s committee called him to serve as the new pastor.