JO Wallace was dedicated to serving God thru a lifetime of ministry. Here is a brief synopsis of that ministry:
J. O. Wallace was converted in a summer tent revival meeting and was baptized when he was 16 in the Bemis swimming pool.
He was drafted in May of 1941. After several assignments, he married Mary Martha Hardwick on July 21, 1942 in Santa Barbara, California. During the last year of service, he was assigned to the VA Hospital in Nashville, Tennessee.
His father, Rev. J. W. Wallace, started the First UPC in West Nashville in April, 1941. A few families from the Goodlettsville area North of Nashville wanted a Pentecostal church. J. O. and his father held tent meetings in Goodlettsville during the summer of 1945. J. O. was pastor of the church the first year while still in uniform.
After being discharged from the Army in October 1945, J. O. entered Bob Jones College in Cleveland, TN. In 1948, J. O. taught in the Pentecostal Bible Institute in Tupelo, MS.
(Above) In 1949, J. O. and his father purchased this small church building in South Nashville for the Pentecostal families in the area. Bro. J. W. Wallace held a tent revival during the summer. J. O Wallace pastored the church until 1951. His brother-in-law, Rev. L.H. Hardwick, assisted with the music and became the pastor in 1951.
In 1951, J. O. was chosen as the TN District Secretary of the UPC under the leadership of Rev. W. M. Greer. The Wallaces moved to Bemis, TN. J. O. also served as Rev. Greer’s assistant pastor of the Bemis UPC. Later that year J. O. also became the camp superintendant of the new TN UPC Camp at Perryville, TN. He commuted to Nashville to finish his BA degree at George Peabody College.
In November, 1951 J. O. was asked to manage the UPC Publishing Division in St. Louis, MO. The Wallaces moved to St. Louis. This position required long hours at the office, travel and publication promotion.
At the General Conference in November 1953, his father informed J. O. of his health problems. J. O. resigned the Publishing position to return to Nashville to assist his father with the First UPC. J. O. greatly loved his father. The Wallaces moved into the duplex his father built next to the church. Mary Wallace opened a child care center in the basement of the duplex. J. O. became pastor of the First UPC in Nashville as his father’s health continued to fail. In 1956, J. O. resigned the First UPC in Nashville.
In 1956, J. O. became pastor of the Oak Ridge UPC and the family moved to the church parsonage next to the church.
In 1958 at the UPC General Conference J. O. was appointed the General SS Director of the UPC. Since this position required extensive travel, the family moved back to the Nashville duplex. Mary continued to operate a child care center in the basement. In 1962, the duplex property was purchased by the government to build Interstate 40. Mary built a large child care center in the Hillwood area of Nashville. The family moved into an upstairs apartment of the child care center.
In 1965, the Wallaces moved to Collinsville, IL near the planned new UPC offices. After the UPC Office plans were changed to Hazelwood, MO. the family moved to St. Louis near the new office. J. O. served as General SS Director for 17 years.
Teacher training and literature development became the emphasis of the UPC SS Department under J. O.’s leadership. Many attendance promotions were conducted. Development of SS on the mission fields was promoted.
After resigning in 1974, the Wallaces were appointed teaching positions at the Jackson College of Ministry in Jackson, MS. A year later, J. O. became pastor of the Bellevue UPC in West Nashville.
In 1980, J. O. was appointed manager of PPH again. He promoted book publishing by UPC authors. The sale of literature to churches outside the UPC was developed.
In 1992, J. O. retired again and moved to Columbus, MS near his daughter, Rosemary.
In 1994, J. O. and Mary were offered positions (J. O. – office manager, Mary – bookstore manager) at Christ Church of Nashville. He assisted several small mission churches while living in Nashville.
In 2004, J. O. Wallace resigned his position at Christ Church due to declining health.