Maridus Kinder, Pastor of Counseling

Maridus Kinder

Pastor of Counseling; Inactive Elder

The Lord called Maridus out of darkness and into His marvelous light in September of 1974, at age 19, while serving in the Marine Corps. It was during this time that he was discipled by a retired pastor who led a Christian servicemen's center where he grew to love God’s Word and theology, embrace His mission to reach the lost, and become a functioning part of His church. Following his military service, the Lord led Maridus to college and while there meet Connie, who upon agreeing to marry him has been the greatest gift in his life. Three years into marriage Maridus was treated for cancer, a consequence of which meant he couldn't have children. After several failed adoption attempts, Maridus and Connie have accepted that God's plans for them might be different than what they desired.

Maridus and Connie Kinder
Maridus and Connie Kinder

Over the first 20 years of their marriage, besides being lay leaders in our local church's various ministries, they have hosted several foreign exchange students and started a YoungLife ministry at a local high school. Professionally, Connie served first as a school teacher and then as a principal until her recent retirement after 35 years in the field. Following retirement from schools, Connie transitioned into the counseling profession and now has a private practice in Franklin.

During these first 20 years, Maridus finished college, worked for nearly a decade in corporate management, and then went to seminary to prepare for a transition into full-time ministry. Upon earning a Master of Divinity (M.Div.) in 1994 I was hired by our church in Oregon to pastor various ministries. In God's timing, while in seminary and as part of the church, I became friends with Jeff Schulte (founding Fellowship pastor) and Brandt Luke (Fellowship’s first FSM pastor), two men who would later become involved in Fellowship's church plant.

In 2000 Fellowship extended the opportunity for Maridus to join the pastoral staff. Over the past 18 years he has served in various capacities, including New Member assimilation, Community Groups and Global Outreach. In 2005 Maridus began taking courses to more deeply develop people-helping skills which resulted in earning his Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy degree (MMFT) in 2008. He was licensed by the State of TN in 2011. Since that time, he has served as the Pastor of Counseling and managed various ministries. Maridus also currently serves as the pastor of Global Outreach. With respect to the office of Elder, he has had the honor to serve the Lord and this body these past 15 years.