Part 7: The Call~ Shepherd-Princes & Sarah’s Daughters~ Interviews with Pastors and their Wives in Honor of Pastor Appreciation Month 2016


When you became a Christian, did you think you would be pastoring one day?

Heck no! -Sarah Hanlon, Forrestdale Church, Sandwich, MA

I had no idea I would be a pastor. I revered them, but it was not something I sought out or thought I could ever do. -Pastor Bruce Hanlon, Forrestdale Church, Sandwich MA

Tell me about when you realized you were called to be a Pastor / Pastor’s wife?

I went to school to be a teacher, not a pastor. I was in Mombasa Kenya teaching Bible theology, teaching pastors to be pastors. I thought maybe I needed to go and actually be steeped in it, pastoring, so I had experienced what I was teaching.  I came back to the US and ended up pastoring for 11 years in that church. I returned to Africa to Malawi and taught and pastored for 2 years and then pastored an international church in Vienna for 3 years before returning to New England to pastor a year ago.

I’ve never put the label of “pastor’s wife” or those expectations on my wife, Sarah. I’m the pastor and she’s my wife and can function in the church like all the other members. I don’t tell my wife our church members’ problems or what I counsel people about. That would be a breach in trust. -Pastor Bruce Hanlon, Forrestdale Church, Sandwich MA


Did you think when you became a Christian you would be pastoring one day?

I had the desire to marry a preacher, but I left my life as a blank check and said, “God, you fill it in.” -Lori Ganiear, Victory Chapel CFM, Cape Cod MA

No. -Pastor Chip Ganiear, Victory Chapel CFM, Cape Cod MA

Tell me about when you realized you were called to be a Pastor / Pastor’s wife?

Life appeared dormant for awhile. In my 20’s I got called out and given a word about being like a certain bamboo tree that is dormant for years and then suddenly grows. -Lori Ganiear

I had been saved for 6 years when I went to a men’s discipleship class Pastor Campo was teaching. He didn’t know me at the time. It was the first time I had ever been given a word. Pastor Campo called me out and said, “God keeps putting your name on a list and you keep taking it off. Stop taking it off.” I went from that class pondering how God for a while had been telling me, “I want you to preach,” and I kept saying, Nah; I don’t think that’s really God. At that point God said, “Leave your name on the list; I want you to do that.” And I said, “Okay.” and started to agree with God.

It’s a privilege to be here and be a part of this ministry on the Cape. It’s always been a reference point. I remember being a new believer and coming here and I never thought I’d be doing what I’m doing. I’m looking forward to what God has for us. Grateful for the opportunity to learn and grow. It’s just the beginning.  (Pastor Ganiear is now married to Pastor Campo’s daughter, Lori. 🙂


Tell me about when you realized you were called to be a Pastor / Pastor’s wife?

Before I became a Christian I always knew in my heart I was put here on Earth by God for a reason. I was attending my first East Coast Bible conference on Cape Cod when my pastor gave an altar call saying, “Whoever feels in their heart that God is calling them to preach the Gospel stand up.” I was very joyful being a Born Again Christian, but I had no idea until that moment that this was my calling. At that moment, God spoke to my heart and answered my lifelong question “Why was I on Earth?” He told me it was to be a pastor. -Pastor Peter Laine, Victory Chapel CFM, Dover NH

Less than a year after I gave my life to Jesus Christ I felt a pulling on my heart more and more toward God.  Before I get got saved I never thought of God, now I’m thinking about him every day, every moment. I could not get enough of Bible reading, church and fellowship with other Christians. I had a vivid dream about being a pastor’s wife which was so real that the next church service I told my pastor I had to talk to him and  it was urgent. You have to understand, we were in the middle of a Bible conference and here I was a novice Christian,  giving him the impression that I had this incredible need that could not wait. He graciously called me into his office during the service.

“I had a dream I’m going to be a pastor’s wife.” I said.

I waited for all this incredible Godly advice that I thought he would pour out, but he simply looked at me and said, “That’s nice.”

“What do I do to marry a pastor?” I asked.

I don’t know if he chuckled or held back laughter, but he simply said, “Keep serving God,” after responding  that pastors in our fellowship are already married.

“How do I get a man of God?”

“Be a woman of God.” He said. (Yup; that’s my pastor!) 🙂

I started praying and seeking God even more which led to God’s appointed time of me meeting my husband. -Ruthanne Laine, Victory Chapel CFM, Dover NH (Ruthanne is the friend, the Proverbs 31 woman I speak of in Welcome to My Dysfunction)


Tell me about when you realized you were called to be a Pastor / Pastor’s wife?

I felt very blessed but a bit overwhelmed. It is quite an honor to be married to a pastor and a very high calling. -Chantry La Belle, Presbyterian Church, Cape Cod MA

When I was 20 years old. But I had much to learn, both about myself and about the Lord and about His truth. So it was 14 years later before I was ordained and installed in my first church.

The pastor’s calling is a calling, not to a job, but to a life. The pastor is not his own man, he’s God’s man. He’s a herald with a divine message, an ambassador for the King of kings, a watchman in Israel, a laborer in the Lord’s vineyard, a bishop of souls, an elder in Christ’s church, an example to the flock. His life is to be eminently one of self-denial, self-sacrifice, selflessness, service, and devotion. If you can do anything else at all, then do it. No man should ever dare to enter the pastorate unless he’s certain of God’s calling. Because without it, he’ll be alone and both unfit and ill-equipped for the ministry; and without it, he’ll do the church more harm than good. He’d better be sure he’s called, anointed, equipped, Spirit-filled, and gifted by God, or he should sit down, get a job, and let someone else serve the church. The responsibility of the pastorate is the most sobering to which a man can be called. It is the highest calling a man can have and requires the greatest grace of all; humility. -Pastor James La Belle, author, Presbyterian Church, Cape Cod MA

*Text the word PASTOR to 74574 for daily/weekly reminders & tips to pray for your pastor.

**Share some words of appreciation for your pastor and he will be listed on the Wall of Honor and entered to win a retreat at the Energize Lodge.

Author: Rachael M. Colby

Born and raised in Jamaica, award-winning writer Rachael M. Colby resides in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Wife, mom, beach bum, artist, work in progress, avid Tweeter—#HealthyFaithChat leader, Rachael writes to glorify God, encourage believers, and reach the lost. She connects culture’s questions with Christianity’s answers, inspires faith, and motivates through articles, devotions, poetry, and interviews. She has a heart for racial reconciliation and to uplift those who serve in tough places. Her work has appeared on Southern Ohio Christian Voice, Inkspirations Online, the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference Blog, in the compilation books Creative Writing Journal: Faith Inspired Writing Prompts & Hope-Filled Poetry, The Courage to Write: 62 devotions to Encourage your Writing Journey, and Defining Moments: Memorable and Inspiring Stories from Outstanding Leaders, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Well That Was Funny, and in the Oak Ridger newspaper. She runs on copious amounts of coffee and chocolate and a whole lot of "Help me, Jesus." Her WIPS include a compilation of her family’s and others’ stories of their work as civil rights activists (adult and children’s books), and a devotional for writers. You can connect with Rachael on her website,—a place for seekers, followers, and writers, and on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

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