Pastor Paul was ordained by Hillcrest Church in Dallas where he served for six years. While at Hillcrest, Paul and Anita founded and pastored the Familia de Fe Spanish Ministry and later pastored the Abundant Life Ministry. During his tenure at Hillcrest Church, Paul assisted in many administrative and pastoral positions under Senior Pastor Mark Brand and was as an assistant to Pastor Joe Willoughby in Missions and then Rev. Joe Slaughter in Pastoral Care.
Before coming to Hillcrest Church, Paul taught English and Spanish at the community colleges and was working as an administrative assistant at Brookhaven College. Originally from Omaha, Nebraska, Paul graduated from Nebraska Wesleyan University in 1985 with majors in English and Religion.
Originally from Beeville, Texas and then having grown up in Big Spring, Texas, Anita moved to Dallas in 1989 and joined Hillcrest Church in 1990. She has worked for 21 years now at Texas Twist, a Carrollton based pretzel bakery. Her administrative duties there keep her busy, but nights and weekends she is serving the Lord by Paul's side!
Singing and playing guitar, Anita has been leading and helping with worship in every area of ministry that she and Paul have served in. Like Paul, she is known for her love and concern for people.
Paul and Anita have been happily married since 2001. Paul and Anita have seven children between them, and nine grandchildren! On the heels of their 10th anniversary, with nearly all the family involved, they launched Mill Valley Fellowship on September 25, 2011 in their living room. They are excited about the new work the Lord is doing!
A student at the University of Arkansas, Pastor Allan Groff is a graduate of Frank Phillips College, Henderson State University and Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville. He is certified in Clinical Pastoral Education by Hillcrest Medical Center in Tulsa, OK.
Allen and Joyce Groff are parents to four children: Jan, a physician in Tucson; Teresa, a teacher in San Diego; Denise, a therapist in Frisco; and Scott, with Highland Capital in Dallas. Joyce died in 2010 and as they were leaving the cemetery, the children said, "Dad, you and Mom are gonna be in the Guiness Book." When inquiring as to "why?," they answered, "For the longest honeymoon on record -- sixty years." Family and friends all attest to the validity of the designation.
Pastor Groff's spiritual formation runs the gamut from his confirmation in the liturgical tradition to leadership in Pentecostal circles. For decades, parishoners would describe their pastor as "not typical." That probably stemmed from the fact that he truly believes that Christianity is comprised of all who acknowledge Christ as Savior and Lord and they just naturally belong together. The ease with which he bridged nominal concerns made for a radical, joyous potpourri of membership. Through the years his pastorates were marked with a happy mixture of traditions, whether in the pioneering of a church whose aggregate attendance the first two Sunday was three - himself, his wife and baby daughter - to a congregation of thousands.
His enthusiasm for the ministry and future of Mill Valley as it engages in service to the community is contagious -- so beware! Be ready for the adventure!