President Teague says it so often and always in one breath, one might think it’s a singular word: “My wife Paulette and me.” Ever since June 23, 1973, when he married his college sweetheart, Paulette Neymeyer, it has been always “My wife Paulette and me.” Paulette has been President Teague’s lifelong friend and true partner in life and ministry. In his own words, “Paulette has faithfully held up my hands in ministry, counseled me, supported me, and prayed for me, never once complaining about the long hours.”
Peter and Paulette met while students at Sterling College, a small Christian liberal arts college in Kansas. They dated, fell in love, and were married after graduation. Both had a desire to be used of the Lord in any way He wanted, a desire that continues to this day. Through many circumstances, the Lord led these two Iowa natives from Kansas to Colorado to York, Pennsylvania, and finally to Lancaster. Married for 45 years, Peter and Paulette are the parents of four children and have 11 grandchildren.
Paulette is an accomplished woman in her own right. She graduated from Sterling with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary education and taught for several years in public and Christian schools. Upon obtaining her Master’s Degree from the University of Pennsylvania, she served as a Learning Disabilities Therapist.
After their third child, Jessica, was born with a severe developmental disability, Paulette became involved with children with disabilities and their families. She began a Disabilities Ministry in their home church, which now has a vital ministry to many individuals with disabilities and serves as a model that many other churches follow.
In 1998, she and Peter co-founded a non-profit, faith-based organization in York, Pennsylvania called Jessica & Friends Community. This ministry provides Christ-centered residential services, a caregiver support ministry, day programs, and a home and community program that provides respite, community habilitation, and companion services for individuals with autism and intellectual disabilities. Today Paulette devotes most of her time to Jessica & Friends Community, making a substantial contribution to its growth and daily operations. She is frequently invited by many groups and organizations to share her story on how God has used Jessica’s life to serve hundreds of people, all for His glory.
Above: Peter and Paulette Teague pose for a portrait.
Paulette complemented her husband’s 45-year ministry in education by “blooming where she was planted.” She helped start various ministries in her local church and Christian School of York, including a MOPS ministry (Mothers of Preschoolers), Moms in Touch, and Mothers for CSY. At Lancaster Bible College, Paulette led the charge for developing five areas of women’s ministry implemented by Women’s Auxiliary: Women in the Word, a community Bible study; Women in Friendship, mentoring female LBC students; Women in Service, LBC service projects and student scholarships; Women in Prayer cell groups; Women in the Home (her personal favorite) teaching female seniors at LBC the art and skill of meal planning, hospitality, family, finances, modest dress, and becoming a ministry helpmate. She has been instrumental in developing LBC’s new academic major to be launched soon, Leadership in Disability Studies, and often speaks to students in class. A profile of grace, you will often find Paulette serving in a hospitality role in their home or on campus hosting students, missionaries, pastors, employees and visitors far and wide.
Perhaps the highest tribute comes from Peter who wrote: “I could not possibly articulate what Paulette has meant to me through the years, especially during my years in the presidency. This job comes with many stresses and strains, many 75-hour weeks and significant travel. Lancaster Bible College is never really away from us and we are never really away from it. It is wherever we are. If Paulette saw this as competing with our life together, then we would be in a painfully difficult situation. I have a pastor friend who speaks of his church as ‘the mistress who calls him away from his marriage.’ But Paulette has given herself to this task to such an extent that she and I have grown together. Paulette has been there not just for me, but also for many of our students, faculty and staff as well as the varied women’s ministries of the College. She has a quiet gift of reaching out to people and her sweet spirit brings out the best in others.”
Paulette, we thank you for your gracious, engaging spirit. Thank you for your beautiful example of steadfast love, faithful prayer, and devoted friendship. Thank you for using your gifts, every challenge, every opportunity to proclaim Christ by selflessly serving others. You have lightened many moments with your laugh, quick wit, a word of encouragement or a word of wisdom appropriately spoken. You have shown what it means to be reverent in the way you live, to teach what is good, to love your husband and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, and to be kind. For all this and more, we thank God for you and pray you and Peter will enjoy His continued blessing in this new chapter of life.