Kevin Garner - Senior Pastor
Kevin Garner and his wife Susan both grew up on farms in East Central Illinois, near Watseka, which is approximately 80 miles south of Chicago.
Following graduation from Watseka High School, Kevin attended Illinois Wesleyan University, where he received a bachelor's degree focusing on world religions in 1985. Kevin then returned to Watseka, Illinois, where he farmed with his father, worked in a grocery store, and did substitute teaching in the area school districts. Having accepted Christ in 1984 at the age of 21, Kevin also became involved in Christian ministry in his home congregation by teaching Sunday School and helping lead the youth group and in his community through a jail ministry at the County jail. Kevin felt God calling him to seminary in 1991; and he graduated from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois, in 1993 With a Master of Divinity degree. He was a recipient of The Lloyd Perry Preaching Award at Trinity that year.
Kevin has been serving as pastor of Fox River Lutheran Church in Norway, Illinois, since March, 1994, and has spoken at numerous special meetings, evangelistic rallies, and family or youth Bible camps and retreats. His sermons are broadcast each Sunday morning on two area radio stations that have an outreach to approximately 2 million people.
In 1993, Kevin married his wife Susan. They met at their home congregation, Faith Lutheran Church in Watseka, and worked together as youth group leaders for a couple years. Susan is a licensed clinical social worker and a certified alcohol and drug counselor, who is currently developing a part-time private practice doing professional counseling with a Christian perspective. She graduated from Aurora University with a Master's Degree in Social Work in 1997 and worked as a dual diagnosis therapist for three years at North Central Behavioral Health Systems in Ottawa, Illinois. Prior to their marriage, Susan had worked as a legal secretary and as an executive secretary/administrative assistant at the Billy Graham Evangelistic Film Ministry in Minneapolis, Minnesota, at Samaritan's Purse & World Medical Mission in Boone, North Carolina, and at Iroquois Memorial Hospital in Watseka, Illinois.