On Nov. 5, 2022, Monte Wood was ordained in Baker City, Oregon, in the largest of his five churches. He is the pastor for the Baker City, Dayville, John Day, Long Creek and Richland district.
Wood’s path to pastoral ministry didn’t follow the traditional method. Soon after graduating from Laurelwood Adventist Academy, he married Dallena Bartell. As life became busier, he walked away from his early commitment to Jesus. After several years, the Woods moved to Vermont. Being immersed in nature, the cares of life began to lift. As can often happen, after the birth of their son Morgan, Wood became interested in spiritual things again. He began studying and decided to follow Jesus. He and Dallena were rebaptized in June 2007.
Wood began volunteering as a Bible worker for his church in 2008 and enrolled at Amazing Facts College of Evangelism in 2010. After graduating from AFCOE, Idaho Conference hired him to serve as a Bible worker in Eastern Idaho, an area with a large concentration of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints members. He served there for a little more than four years.
In July 2015, Idaho Conference hired him to pastor the Baker City, Oregon, district. Wood was continuing to work on a religion/theology bachelor’s degree online, wedged in among his pastoral responsibilities for five churches.
In 2022, after completing his degree and beginning the Master in Pastoral Ministry program, Idaho Conference administration recommended him to North Pacific Union for ordination. While in the past many ordinations have taken place at camp meeting, administration is moving toward ordaining a pastor in one of their churches.
Wood chose Dan Matthews to provide the homily for his ordination service. Matthews was a long-time family friend. He shared the story of Elisha, who was “mantled by the Lord.” Lisa Evenson, wife of Wood’s mentor Chris Evenson, provided beautiful harp music during the service. Bill McClendon, North Pacific Union vice president, led in the prayer of ordination.
During his response, Wood shared that he got involved in pastoral ministry to share the good news of Jesus. He wants to give others the opportunity to find a Savior who wants to be a Friend.
After the service, Baker City Church provided a wonderful meal for everyone. The fellowship hall was beautifully decorated and some young people served each table. The love the members feel for their pastor and his family was very evident!