My focus the pastor of Grace is keeping the main thing the main thing. The main thing, of course, is the life-giving good news of God’s love and forgiveness for us and for the whole world by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. All that we do as a Christian community of faith ought to proceed from and reinforce this central affirmation, beginning with our weekly gathering for worship, extending to our various ministries, and reaching the daily lives of our members and all whom we encounter.
I was called to Grace in 2015 after serving for 12 years as the pastor of Epiphany Lutheran Church in Carbondale, Illinois. Before that I served for four years as an ELCA missionary in St. Petersburg, Russia, where I taught theology and church history at a Russian Lutheran seminary. That was not my first time in Russia. As an undergraduate Russian major, I studied for a semester in Moscow, and it was there that I met my wife, Helen, a Russian major from the UK. We were married 2 years later and now have three grown children: Andrew, James, and Marian.