A well-known Copperas Cove musical ministry family is re-locating to the continent down under.
Larry Sturm, his wife Jennifer, and two of their three children are packing and preparing farewells for their friends and neighbors in the Killeen and Cove area.
They leave the United States this month to partner with Jennifer Sturm’s parents in a nationwide ministry in Australia, and will eventually be successors to the ministry begun by Harry and Doreen Westcott many years ago.
“We will serve by Jennifer assisting the church congregation, and (the Westcotts) will minister to churches in other areas,” Sturm said.
“I will lead the international missions, including Cambodia, Malaysia and Indonesia.
Jennifer Sturm was born in Australia. Larry and Jennifer met when he took a ministry to Australia in the 1980s.
The couple married in 1988 in Sydney, Australia, and moved to Copperas Cove. They have three children, Hope 18, Lily 16, and Joel 10. Hope Sturm will remain in Dallas to attend her dad’s alma mater, Christ for the Nations College.
Larry Sturm was born in De Ridder, La., and grew up as a military child.
His family was stationed in Germany for many years.
While in Germany, he came out of church one day and heard a combine in a field getting the grain harvest ready. At 9 years old, he didn’t really understand why the scene moved him so much emotionally and caused him to weep. It never dawned on him then that the mission fields of the world would call to him as an adult.
The military family came to Cove in 1969 and Larry Sturm graduated from Copperas Cove High School in 1976. After high school, God led him to attend Christ for the Nations. He began vocal appreciation class and his musical skills began to emerge. The first church he sang for was Grace United Methodist Church in Copperas Cove.
In 1980, Larry Sturm organized a church musical production. It was so successful that other churches in the area invited him to organize their vocalists to perform “The Witness.” He began a Christian Arts Center in Cove that presented musicals and invited guest singers and speakers to make a difference in the community. In 1983, he traveled to Seoul, Korea, to sing with Campus Crusade for Christ and received such attention that leaders from other nations began to call on him to visit their countries.
Larry Sturm has sung in most area churches and has traveled to 35 nations.
“Having known Larry and Jennifer for decades, the word ‘passion’ comes to mind,” said Pastor John Abbey of Bethel Church in Killeen. “They love and have a desire to share with people of many nations with music as the perfect tool of that expression.”