Hopedale Baptist Church


Our People

Senior Pastor

Minister of Worship & Family Ministry

Office Administrator & Women’s Ministry


Student Ministry Director

Lisa Jones

WeeHope Weekday Education Director

Kaleena Porter

Nursery Director

Our History

About Hopedale

Hopedale Baptist Church has been a part of the Ozark Community for many years.  Started in 1885, Hopedale was the only church in a small farming village called Hopedale.  There were just a few buildings in town but a church was missing.  Three men decided that their town needed a church so they invited a preacher who came and preached a revival service and those three men were the first three that made a decision to follow Jesus at that revival.  Those three men became the three founding members of Hopedale Baptist Church.  Little did those men know that years later the village of Hopedale would be absorbed into the growing town of Ozark and part of one of the fastest growing areas in the state of Missouri.

Hopedale is no longer out in the country but rather sits right off highway 65 in the middle of a rapidly growing, family-oriented town.  Family has always been important here at Hopedale and it continues to be our driving focus.  We believe that every member of a family plays an important part in the life and work of Jesus Christ our Savior and Lord.  

At Hopedale we also believe that no matter your age you matter to God.  Our mission is to: Share the Hope of Jesus with ALL Generations!


What We Believe

We are here to Glorify God, Grow Believers, and Give Hope. Find our statement of beliefs by following this link to the Baptist Faith and Message

Mark Arnold

Senior Pastor

Mark J. Arnold began serving as our Senior Pastor in 2020. Pastor Mark received his B.A. from OBU in Shawnee, OK and his M.Div. from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth, Tx.  Mark has been in ministry for over 42 years having served as a Senior Pastor, NAMB Church Planter, Minister of Education and various other staff positions in Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Missouri.  He has ministered as a Transitional Pastor and consultant at several MBC churches including First Baptist Sedalia, Riverview Baptist Osage Beach, First Baptist Ozark, North Nixa Baptist and Hopedale before becoming our Senior Pastor.  Mark has been married to his college sweetheart, Jackie, for 41 years.  They have four adult children, three granddaughters and a grandson!

Eric Carter

Minister of Worship & Family Ministry

Pastor Eric has served Hopedale since 2015.  He serves alongside his lovely wife and partner in ministry, Vicky.  In addition, he is proud to be the father of two awesome sons, Trevor and Nathan.  Previously, he and his family had the blessing of serving churches in Miami, OK, Bartlesville, OK, Camdenton, MO, Odessa, MO, Bloomington, IL, and Lebanon, MO.  Pastor Eric loves serving the people of Hopedale and has a passion for Worship Ministry and the development of individuals of all ages as we give glory to the “Audience of One.”  In addition to his role as Minister of Worship, Eric is passionate in serving as Pastor of Family Ministries at Hopedale by overseeing opportunities in growth, education, and nurturing of the Family!

Jennifer Toliver

Office Administrator & Women’s Ministry

Jennifer Toliver has served at Hopedale since 2001.  She provides administrative support to the Pastoral staff and ministry teams.  She is responsible for the oversight and coordination of the administrative ministries of the church, including communication, facilities, finance, and personnel.  She works with church members and the community to achieve the mission of the church.

Dani Preston

children's ministry director

Dani has served in the children’s department at Hopedale since 2019.  Dani has a desire to ignite children in a way that will nurture their natural curiosity of learning who Jesus is and how much He loves them through a personal relationship with Him.  Dani has been married to her high school sweetheart, Jason, for over twenty-one years.  They have three incredible kids, Chelsey, Lucas and Harleigh and two amazing grandchildren, EmmaGrace and Brody, who bring immense joy into their lives. 

Kevin Agan

Student Ministry Director

Kevin Agan has been married to the love of his life, Kim for 23 years. He also has the “privilege” of being daddy to their beautiful 8-year-old daughter, Palmer. They have been members at Hopedale for the past nine years, and could not be happier with the place that God has chosen for them to call “home”. He has had a passion for youth since he was a youth himself. This has led him to be involved with youth in some capacity at every church that he has attended. The Lord has given his wife this same passion, as well as a desire to be his support team and encourager. They are so very thankful that God has chosen to work through them in the guidance of the amazing students at Hopedale.

Lisa Jones

Weehope weekday education director

Lisa has been a member of Hopedale for 18 years and worked as a teacher at Wee Hope for 9 years before becoming director in 2021.  She graduated from SBU with a degree in Child and Family Development, and later earned teaching certificates and a M.Ed. degree from MSU.  Her passion is to support families and teachers in providing a strong biblical educational foundation for preschoolers.  She is so thankful for her wonderfully supportive family, including a husband, four grown children and two grandsons.

Kaleena Porter


Kaleena has been attending Hopedale for 4 years. She started as the nursery coordinator in January of 2021.  Her and her family reside here in Ozark. She is married to Justin and has 2 kids, Kastyn and Jasper. When she isn’t working in the nursery, Kaleena is a teacher and enjoys spending time with her kids.