Sunnyside pastor retiring from his flock

Pastor John Jacobs has preached the message of God in Sunnyside for a long time. 29 1/2 years to be exact.

That will all come to an end this Sunday as Jacobs delivers his last sermon to the followers of the First Christian Church.

"I will miss the people," he said. He will still be around though, serving and helping the people.

Jacobs received his call from God in 1951. The year earlier he had been in a terrible car accident that left him with a tail bone broken in three pieces. He was in a lot of pain and had to wear a brace because of it.

One day he attended a healing service at the Seattle Armory led by none other than Oral Roberts. Roberts asked the crowd to raise their hand if they believed God could heal them.

"I raised my hand and felt a bolt of lightning go through my body," Jacobs said. "After that, I wasn't in pain anymore and I threw away my brace that night."

Not long after that, Jacobs started studying the ministry, took and passed his tests and then was ordained as a minister in Walla Walla at the First Church of the Nazarene.

His first pastoral job was in Princeton, Idaho. He stayed there for a little over two years and then took over pastoral duties at the Nazarene Church here in Sunnyside.

In 1965 he went back to work as a printer, a job he had done many times before. He worked for Franklin Press in Yakima. There he was involved in estimating, selling and managing.

After three years of this, he moved to Othello to manage a print shop there. Five years away from Sunnyside was enough to draw him back and he started work on the printing press for the Daily Sun Newscast.

Jacobs started to attend the First Christian Church in Sunnyside and became the interim minister, a position he held for 24 years until he became officially ordained as the pastor for the church.

He plans on staying active in the food bank at the church after he retires. "Got to do something," he says.

Dan Hotchkiss and his wife Jo will be taking over the ministering duties starting Jan. 15.

"I like the people," Jacobs recalled. "I've enjoyed going to the nursing home and the hospital and comforting people."

Now, people will be able to see him hanging around town and running the food bank. And of course doing his hobbies.

"Woodworking," he says. "I'll be doing a lot of that."



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