Jessica Capps honored for 20 years on staff
Minister to Senior Adults Jessica Capps recently celebrated her 20-year anniversary as a Wilshire staffer. She will be recognized during worship on Aug. 30.
Senior Pastor George Mason describes Jessica this way: “Gentle, caring, thoughtful, thorough. What would you want from a minister to senior adults other than those qualities that define Jessica Capps? For 20 years now we have been graced by her shy but significant ministry. Jessica doesn’t seek the spotlight; she prefers to shine it on others.”Jessica oversees Wilshire’s programming and pastoral care for those 65 and above. She is staff coordinator for the Wilshire Adventurers group and manages outreach to the church’s homebound members.
“I wouldn’t want to work with another age group,” Jessica says. “You get to be a part of peoples’ lives, and sometimes that means walking with them through grief or a challenging illness or circumstance. The greatest part of my job is getting to see how God moves them into a place of joy and hope.”
Jessica and her husband, Mike, joined Wilshire with their two kids, daughter Taylor and son Drew, in 1998 from First Baptist Church in Garland, where Jessica had been senior adult minister for almost 10 years. Her first staff position at Wilshire was as a part-time volunteer coordinator and director of new member assimilation. She also worked as senior adult Sunday School coordinator before assuming her current ministerial role in 2009.
Jessica earned a master’s degree from the University of North Texas in management of special needs populations, with a focus on senior adults. She also earned a specialist certificate in aging from UNT and has done graduate work at Southwestern Seminary in Fort Worth and TCU’s Brite Divinity School. Jessica was ordained to the ministry at Wilshire in 2015.
Jessica cites experiences with her great grandmother as planting the seed for her interest in senior adults and aging. “She was a beautiful woman, willing to sacrifice the clothes off her back. Her end of life was difficult due to limited resources and living in a small town. That spurred me into the passion of being in a position where I could make a difference for somebody.”
Ministering to the homebound, those members who are physically unable to attend in person, is a particular passion for Jessica. “Being able to connect and have a relationship with them, and to help them find God’s presence, is extremely meaningful to me.”
Jessica echoes other Wilshire ministers when she says 2020 has been the hardest year of her career due to COVID-19. “Some [senior adults] don’t have internet, and others don’t feel comfortable using Zoom. There are lots of phone calls.” She adds, “Community is vital to all of us. May we each find ways of engaging with others.”
George Mason says, “As Jessica’s pastor and colleague, I can tell you that I never worry about our seniors being neglected, whether they are physically present (which none of us can be nowadays) or homebound. She makes sure they are welcome when they come to church or sees to it that church goes to them.”
Jessica enjoys working as a team with other Wilshire staffers and volunteers. “That’s what makes church an exciting job, to work with a wide range of people. Without that we would not have Wilshire. It’s a great place to be.”
You can drop Jessica a note of gratitude or congratulations at email@example.com