Terry Walters is a devoted husband, father, grandfather, and church pastor. He has written a variety of works from blogs to books, letters to lyrics, plays to poems, and sermons to studies to scripts, Most of his writings have been for personal pleasure and church use, but in 2014 he fulfilled a lifelong dream by becoming a published author.
Terry was born Oct. 22, 1954 in Decatur, IL and was raised just north of there in the small town of Forsyth. He graduated with honors from Maroa-Forsyth High School in 1972, but chose not to go to college at the time. In January of 1976, Terry married Cheryl Bolte of Nokomis, IL and immediately entered the Music & Youth Ministry, serving several churches in northeast Arkansas and Memphis, TN. In 1986 he began to serve as pastor and got a B.A. in Christian Ministries at Williams Baptist College of Walnut Ridge, AR, graduating summa cum laude.
He and Cheryl served as church planters in South Bend, IN for awhile in the early 1990s, then returned to their home state of IL and eventually started Celebration Community Church in Pana in 2001, where they continue to serve. They are both very active in the children's ministry as well and Terry began to write for their own unique program "Straight Street." He writes all the puppet scripts and some of the lessons. That is where his first two books came from and several more are planned. Terry announced his upcoming retirement from pastoring planning to step away from Celebration in March, 2023. Hopefully, he will remain active in pulpit supply around central Illinois!
The Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 9:22 that he had become all things to all people in order to win some of them. Terry takes that seriously, even when having fun, and is willing to go to great lengths to help others in their life-quest. In the pics above you can see "the many faces of Terry" - Waldo the Clown, Elijah the prophet, gospel singer, juggler, roof tile maker (?) in the mountains of Peru, author & book signer, parade float rider, Marshal Dylan Wyatt in one of his plays, and a gangster at a themed party at church. Whether teaching, preaching, acting, writing, playing, or just enjoying his grandkids, Terry gives it his all.
He has supplemented his income while serving smaller churches by any number of ways, but mostly by painting houses. It is his hope that as his books become more and more popular, and signings take up more and more time, he can climb down off that paint ladder! Meanwhile, he hopes to see YOU at one of those book signings!