Jerry Lynn Piker, Pastor of The Door, age 67, of Laurie, entered into Heaven on Thursday, May 17, 2018. He was surrounded by his beautiful wife Shirlene, and his loving family in their home as God received His good and faithful servant into His arms.
Jerry was born in Hickory Ridge, Arkansas on October 5, 1950, to Jess and Edwina Piker. On June 6, 1970 Jerry married the love of his life, Shirlene Culver.
Jerry graduated from Truman High School in Independence, Missouri in 1968. The following year he honored our country and joined the United States Navy serving at Oceana Naval Air Base in Virginia Beach, Virginia and aboard the USS Roosevelt. Later on, Jerry attended and graduated from Rhema Bible College in 1984. Jerry blessed many serving as Regional Director for Rhema Ministerial Alliance International covering Missouri and Arkansas for over 20 years. He and Shirlene have spent the last 32 years as pastors at The Door.
While in Virginia Beach, God spoke deeply to Shirlene as she waited for her sailor to return home from his tour on the USS Roosevelt. Through letters, Jerry knew his wife had encountered a relationship with Jesus that would impact his life all the rest of his days. They moved to Independence in 1972 where their precious daughters were born. Amy Leigh and Jessica Lynn were given to Jerry and Shirlene with great anticipation and joy. Jerry loved his three ladies more than anything. He cherished his position as husband to Shirlene and daddy to Amy and Jessica.
While in Independence, Jerry and Shirlene launched their life as servants of the Lord together. They served as youth pastors in their home church. During this time, they determined they would serve God as individuals, as a family, and in their local church all of their lives. Jerry’s heart for children and youth only grew through the years.
As the years passed, God continued to speak to Jerry’s heart. In 1978, Jerry accepted the call in his heart to enter the ministry. A move to the Lake of the Ozarks came in 1979. He and Shirlene attended Opened Door Christian Fellowship where Jerry served as an elder and together he and Shirlene served in the church helping in any area that had a need. In 1982 Jerry and Shirlene packed the girls up and moved to Broken Arrow, Oklahoma so Jerry could attend Rhema Bible College. God solidified a life of faith in Jerry and showed him numerous times how He made a way for him and his young family. Jerry and Shirlene returned to the lake and accepted the call to pastor Opened Door Christian Fellowship in 1985. During his 32 plus years of ministry at Opened Door Christian Fellowship, also known as The Door, Pastor Jerry encountered thousands of people showing them the love of Christ. He was a pastor, a friend, a servant and an honorable man. Pastor Jerry worked and sacrificed constantly to see people taken care of physically, spiritually, and emotionally. Many were given the gift of family just by the open arms of this courageous man.
Pastor Jerry was blessed to travel to several nations. The words God gave him to speak are still heard across the lands he visited and remain in the hearts of the people he encountered. He will forever live in the seeds he has sown throughout the years in Jesus’ name.
Pastor Jerry has left a legacy behind in his wife, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. His legacy will forever be passed on through the countless lives he welcomed into his heart; calling them sons, daughters, and friends. Few men have the gift, willingness and opportunity to impact lives at a level that this man did. Pastor Jerry will be forever missed, forever cherished, and forever loved by all of us left here to carry on the work God started in him.
In addition to his beautiful wife Shirlene (Culver) Piker, Jerry is survived by daughters Amy Leigh and husband, Don Allen, Jr. of Versailles, Missouri and Jessica Lynn Freeman, and husband, Ed Freeman of Tampa, Florida.
Jerry’s cherished grandchildren are Elizabeth Drescher and husband, Zack Drescher, Chase Freeman and wife, Bree Freeman, Michael Allen, Christian Freeman, Lucas Allen, Claudia Freeman and Sarah Allen. His great-grandchildren are Genesis Drescher, Moses Drescher and Jordi Freeman.
Jerry is also survived by his sister Pam Epps and husband, Bud Epps, his brother Norman Piker, and several nieces and nephews.
Jerry was preceded in death by his loving parents, Jess and Edwina Piker.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m., Monday, May 21, 2018, at The Door in Laurie. The family will receive friends from 10 to11 a.m., Monday in the church. Graveside services and interment full with military honors will follow in Garber Memorial Estates.
Memorial contributions are suggested to the Jerry Piker Memorial Fund.
Expressions of sympathy may be left online at www.kidwellgarber.com.
Arrangements are under the direction and care of the Kidwell-Garber Laurie/Sunrise Beach Chapel.