Passing the baton in Wichita

August 30 was a significant milestone for GCI’s congregation in Wichita, Kansas, as the baton of pastoral leadership was passed from lead pastor Don Engle to a newly commissioned pastoral team. As part of the celebration, Don Engle and his wife Alix were honored on the occasion of Don’s retirement after 43 years of WCG/GCI employment. Regional Pastor Mike Rasmussen honored the Engles by recounting Don’s years of pastoral service and presenting him with a gift from GCI president Joseph Tkach (below, left). The congregation honored the couple with a special cake (right).

Engle gift EngleCake

Don graduated from Ambassador College in Bricket Wood, England in 1972, and was ordained an elder in 1974. During his years of GCI/WCG employment (with Alix at his side most of those years) Don served 15 congregations, including four in New Zealand, and ones in Louisiana, Texas, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, North Carolina, Minnesota, Iowa and Kansas. Don plans to continue his service in ministry as a chaplain with the Harry Hynes Memorial Hospice in Wichita.

As part of the celebration, Mike and Don, with the support of the congregation (see pictures below), commissioned a pastoral team to assume the responsibilities formerly fulfilled by Don as lead pastor. The team members are Kirk Hayden, Laura Hayden, Ross Hays and Rhonda Hays.

commissioning service


Also during the August 30 celebration, Kirk Hayden, a member of the newly commissioned pastoral team, was ordained an elder by Don and Mike (see picture below).


Our sincere thanks to the Engles and congratulations to the new pastoral team.

10 thoughts on “Passing the baton in Wichita”

  1. Congratulations Don and Alix! If you miss the cold Minnesota winters, come on up and enjoy Snowblast 2016 with us this January!

  2. Don and Alix, may our Lord Jesus bless you richly for your past record of faithfulness and continue to lead you both as you go forward from this place in time with Him, in your new challenge of service as chaplain. Oh and from Linda and I, take some time to relax in Jesus’ loving arms. God Bless, David and Linda Husmann.

  3. Dear Kerk and Laura, along with Ross and Rhonda, we wish you the best in your new assignment of responsibility with the Church. May God Bless you in all your challenges that come. David and Linda Husmann

  4. Dear Don & Alix,
    I remember you from your N.Z. days in Hamilton. Do you remember the lovely summer camps we used to have on Motutapu Is. in the Hauraki Gulf ? We used to have singalongs around a campfire and it was great You used to play guitar.You both look great in the photos above.
    All the best for your Chaplaincy work in the Ministry.
    Peter Lindop from Rotorua is a Chaplain for the Hospital there. Love from Yvonne Wayne

  5. Hi Yvonne,

    I certainly remember your name from the SEP days at Motutapu Island. They were wonderful times. Alix made a trip to NZ about a year ago to spend time with her three brothers. I still have that old guitar and serenade some of the patients at the hospice inpatient unit when I have time. Great to hear from you!

    Don & Alix

  6. Hi Don and Alix,

    Congratulations and thanks for your many years of faithful service to the Church and God’s people. May God continue to bless and lead you in this new chapter in your lives!

    Ray and Carol Meyer

  7. “Where were you in ’72”—congrats fellow classmate—you and Alix were always fun to be around at our various conferences over the years—enjoyed the interaction in CH502 as well—great couple!—and still serving people too—well done!

  8. Another endorsement from New Zealand. We really appreciated having you here, and your contributions. They provide some great memories. Yes, Motutapu Island, singalongs, family gatherings and fun…
    But also some sincere Godly advice and guidance.
    Love from Lianne in Auckland

  9. Congratulations Don and Aiix on your success in life thus far and blessings on your continued service to our Lord in a different venue. We pray too for the service of the pastoral team installed in Wichita.

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