In 1855, founders of Rush River Lutheran Church were developing a guide defining the membership and how to live together as a family of God. Our constitution has been modified and changed many times over the decades but as our PREAMBLE states:
“We, baptized members of the Church of Christ, responding in faith to the call of the Holy Spirit through the Gospel, desiring to unite together to preach the Word, administer the sacraments, and carry out God’s mission. In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”
The powers of this congregation are vested in the congregation. It is the congregation, at the Annual Meeting, which elects and gives certain responsibilities to the Congregation Council. At the 2014 Annual Meeting, the congregation voted to change the make-up and number of the Council. The present Council consists of four officers (President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer), four Council members and the Pastor.
The four non-officers of the Council serve as liaisons to the following congregational elected committees: Building and Grounds, Education and Youth, Worship and Witness and the Endowment Board.
The constitution also calls for other elected committees such as Nominating, Audit and Call Committees.
Pastor Dave and Dixie Teig
Rush River Lutheran Church is fortunate and pleased to have Pastor Dave Teig as a full time pastor. He is the eleventh pastor in the 160+ year history of Rush River Lutheran Church. He brings a wealth of experience to his position as well as a gentle grace that belies his strong sense of spirit.
Living a Full Life
Being raised on a family farm in Iowa, Pastor Dave is no stranger to rural life and hard work. While in high school, he favored history and English among academic subjects and basketball among sports. He graduated in 1956 and held the record there as all-time scorer!
“In junior high, I started to think about going to seminary,” he said of his earliest notion; however being a pastor wasn’t always part of his future plans.
Pastor Dave began his higher education at Waldorf Junior College in Forest City, Iowa, while continuing his passion for basketball. He became a member of Waldorf’s Basketball Hall of Fame and graduated from there in 1958.
His studies continued at Augustana University in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where he majored in history and English, graduating from there in 1960.
He attended Luther Seminary for a year in 1960-61, but concluded he missed basketball too much.
Dave had met his future wife, Dixie, while they were both attending Waldorf and they married in 1960. He worked in sales, in the agriculture industry. He became a school teacher, teaching history and English as well as coaching basketball for eighteen years in Minnesota. He was Site Director to Lake Wapogasset’s Ox Lake Bible Camp. They raised a family of four children along the way.
A return to seminary studies
Dave returned to the seminary to finish the studies he had begun and received credit for his year of earlier study. He completed an additional two years of class work, followed by an internship of one year. Pastor Teig was ordained at Trinity Lutheran Church in rural Amery in 1994, and served the nearly 250-member congregation for the next ~20 years, retiring from there in 2013.
The so-called retirement did not last long, as Pastor Dave was called as an interim pastor at Bone Lake for a year, and in November of 2014 came to Rush River also on an interim basis.
Bringing it back home
At the same time, Dixie was working as registrar and receptionist at the Lake Wapogasset Lutheran Bible Camp in rural Amery, Wisconsin. Pastor Dave and Dixie ultimately settled on a 60 acre hobby farm nearby. In conjunction with the Bible Camp, Pastor Dave and Dixie developed and taught a program called “The Land Connection”. This educational program brought WAPO campers to their farm for a classroom experience and hands on learning. The “Land Connection” featured twenty different farm animals along with fifty types of garden fruits and vegetables that were used in teaching the children where their food and clothing comes from.
Pastor Dave and Dixie’s family currently consists of four children and seven grandchildren. Dixie has since retired from her thirty year career at Lake Wapogasset Bible Camp and is a vital part of the ministry at Rush River. She enjoys making home visits and getting to know the people of Rush River Lutheran. Dixie is by Pastor Dave’s side, supporting him in the ministry of Rush River Lutheran Church.