Deaf Ministry

Steve Jensen ElderSteve Jensen, elder and minister for the deaf and hard-of-hearing at Highland church of Christ, was born and raised in Vancouver, WA. Steve was baptized into Christ on May 28, 1970. He was engaged to his wife, Cherry, on June 3, 1970 and married her January 30, 1971. They have three beautiful children. Kevin is a minister for Summitview church of Christ in Yakima, WA and is married with 3 children. Bettina is married to Allen Cansler and lives in Bakersfield. Keith, the youngest, is living and working in Bakersfield. All 3 children are faithful, active Christians.

Steve has a BA degree from Washington State University with a major in Music Education. He taught in Christian Schools in Longview, WA, and Coeur d'Alene, ID for 5 years. He also taught Bible classes and worked on the Joy Bus in both cities. Steve was born hard-of-hearing but became deaf around 29 years of age. He earned a Masters degree in Deaf Education from Lewis and Clark College, Portland, OR, in 1985. In 1986, Steve and his family moved to Bakersfield, CA, where Steve began teaching the deaf and hard-of-hearing for Kern County Superintendent of Schools. In 1988, Steve was asked to begin a deaf ministry with Central church of Christ. In 1996, the deaf ministry was moved to Highland church of Christ where it is today. In June, 1997, Steve went on a missionary trip to Ghana, West Africa, to work with the deaf there. 12 precious souls were baptized into Christ. Steve has been asked to preach for several deaf workshops in California and has spoken for National Deaf Workshops in Memphis and Nashville, Tennessee. In July of 2011, Steve retired from his teaching position and is now able to devote more time to the needs of the deaf ministry.


In December, 1987, Steve and Cherry Jensen, along with Janis Black, were asked by Jim Trimmer, minister for Central church of Christ in Bakersfield, CA, to begin a deaf ministry there. The ministry was officially begun in 1988. We had deaf Bible classes on Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights, with interpreted worship with our hearing brothers and sisters.

In 1992, a search was made for a deaf minister to come and work with us. Arthur Wilson, originally from Indiana, came to work with us full time for about 3 years. During Arthur's time with us, we started a full deaf worship on Sunday mornings.

In 1996, the ministry moved to Highland church of Christ. Shortly after that move, Arthur and his wife, Nancy, moved back to Lubbock, Texas to be closer to their family. Steve Jensen took over as the deaf minister. Steve traveled to Ghana, West Africa, in June 1997 to do missionary work with the deaf there. Besides being deaf minister, Steve also became one of the elders at Highland church of Christ. Several years later, Jerry and Judy Hellman and their family came to Bakersfield from Downey, CA, where Jerry was minister to the deaf. He became our second full time deaf minister. Later, Jerry and his family moved back to Lubbock, Texas to continue his education at Sunset School of Preaching. Since that time, Steve has been the deaf minister.


Matthew 7:13-14 Jesus said, “Enter through the narrow gate that opens the way to heaven. The road that leads to hell is a very easy road. And the gate to hell is very wide. Many people enter that gate. But the gate that opens the way to true life is very small. And the road to true life is very difficult. Only a few people find that road.”

John 14:15 Jesus said, “If you love me, you will do the things I command.”

Matthew 6:33 Jesus said, “The thing you should want most is God's kingdom and doing the good things God wants you to do. Then all these other things you need will be given to you.”

Revelation 2:10b Jesus said, “But be faithful, even if you have to die. If you continue faithful, then I will give you the crown of life.”

Most people want an exciting, entertaining, fun, social church where no matter how they live or what they believe, they will be accepted as Christians. They want a place where they have many deaf friends to talk to who accept them no matter how they live their lives. At Highland church of Christ, we are not looking for crowds. We are not trying to make everyone happy and accept anything anyone believes. We are like the Marines, looking for a few good men and women. We are looking for deaf and hard-of-hearing (and hearing, too) who truly love Jesus and want to obey His commands. Sometimes that means giving up something I believe or want so I can be what Jesus wants me to be. It means changing ME, not changing God's Word. It means giving up the social church concept where I am entertained and have fun, to serve Jesus Christ and Him crucified. My will and the will of God are not the same. My wisdom is worthless before Him. I will submit myself, humble myself, and accept His wisdom and commands. What I want more than anything else in the world is His righteousness, forgiveness of my sins, and a place in heaven. I want to please God. I want to be a New Testament Christian and the only way to do that is to obey Jesus in EVERYTHING. That means my ideas are nothing, Jesus is everything. He is supreme. He is the head of the church. If I become a Christian as He has commanded me and I live my life faithful to Him, then He has promised me a place in heaven with Him for eternity. That's what I want.

Very few people will find this true way to heaven. It is sad, but most deaf will want the social church, the easy way to “heaven”. Jesus says that the easy way, the social church, does not lead to heaven. It leads to hell. Are you willing to step away from the crowds, find the truth, and obey it? That's what we are trying to do. Our goal is to please God and go to heaven. Will you go with us?

My office hours are from 10:00 to 12:00 every Tuesday. If that does not work for you, contact me and we can set up a different time for you. Come and chat, study the Bible, ask for my help, ask me for advice or whatever else you need. Come, let us study together and find the truth, for the truth will make you free. John 8:32

Steve Jensen, deaf minister and elder

(No “reverend”, that is for God only!)
Office hours Tuesday 10:00 am to 12:00 noon
Text 661-932-8793
VP 661-829-4733
E-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Deaf Bible study/worship
Sunday 9:30 am
Wednesday 7:00 pm
10130 Rosedale Highway in Rosedale west of Calloway