Life is a series of transitions from birth to death. At best, transition, though painful, can provide individuals and communities with a time of reflection, vision and opportunity to effect creative change. At worst, transitions can be disruptive and discouraging, leaving individuals and/or communities drained of spirit or hope. In all instances, transitions are made easier if there is a system of nurture and support in place to assist, coach, mentor or advise the individual and/or community through the time of transition. For individuals this support and nurture may come from parents, friends, partners and/or colleagues. For communities this support and nurture is more formalized and may be provided by someone who is appointed, elected or hired to assist the community in transition.

Congregations in Transition

As of March 16, 2018

Recent Vacancy:

(Interim pastor has not yet begun)

  • Bayshore, Whitefish Bay (FT pastor)
  • Mt Zion, Wauwatosa (FT pastor)
  • St Luke, Waukesha (FT pastor) – interim covered by current staffing

Mission Exploration Process:

(no candidates received at this time) NOTE: “Transition Pastors” provide pastoral support and consistency to the congregation during a time of rostered minister transition, and do not lead a MET process. “Transition Consultants” help lead a MET process, and have limited pastoral leadership responsibilities. “Interim” Pastors provide pastoral support and lead a MET process. “Bridge” Pastors offer short term pastoral support until an interim or a called pastor begins.

  • Advent, Cedarburg (FT pastor) – Rev. Debra Trakel, FT interim pastor
  • All People’s Church (FT lead pastor) – Rev. Alexis Twito, PT transition consultant
  • House of Prayer, Franklin (FT pastor) – Rev. Kathy Brown, FT interim pastor
  • Peace, Burlington (PT pastor) – Rev. Carol Juennette, PT transition consultant
  • Redeemer, Hartford (FT pastor) – Rev. Jon Breimeier, PT interim
  • Redemption, Wauwatosa (PT pastor) – Rev. Maren Hooper, PT transition pastor
  • Spirit Alive!, Kenosha (PT pastor) – Rev. Sue Ruehle, PT transition pastor
  • St. Andrew, Sheboygan (PT pastor) – Rev. Paul Ihlenfeld, PT interim
  • St. John, Brookfield (FT senior pastor) – Rev. Frank Janzow PT transition consultant
  • St Luke, Waukesha (FT senior pastor) – MET process led by current staffing
  • St. Paul, Milwaukee (FT pastor) – Rev. Jacob Werkheiser, PT transition pastor and Rev. Sandy Jacobs, PT transition consultant
  • Trinity, South Milwaukee (FT pastor) – Rev. Michael Mueller, FT interim
  • Zion, Ashippun (PT pastor) – supply pastor

Ministry Site Profile (MSP) Posted:

 Associate Pastor Positions
  • Fox Point, Fox Point (FT 2nd associate pastor)
  • Holy Cross, Menomonee Falls (associate pastor)
  • Lord of Life, Kenosha (FT associate pastor) – Rev. Cynthia Aasen, PT transition pastor
  • Unity, Brookfield (FT 3rd pastor) – Rev. Jennifer Carlson, FT transition pastor
 Co-Pastor Positions
  • Ascension, Milwaukee (FT 3rd co-pastor) – Rev. Kipp Zimmerman, bridge pastor
 Lead or Senior Pastor Positions:
  • Mt Pleasant, Racine (FT senior pastor) – Rev. Bill Mains, FT transition pastor
  • St. Mary, Kenosha (FT senior pastor) – Rev. John Holm, FT interim
 Solo Pastor positions:
  • Cross, Ixonia (PT solo pastor) – Rev. James Stein, PT interim
  • Emaus, Racine (FT bi-lingual solo pastor) – supply
  • Journey in Faith, Racine (FT pastor) – supply
  • St. Luke, Slinger (FT pastor) – Rev. Steve Clingman, FT interim
  • St. Paul, Kenosha (PT solo pastor) – Rev. Sue Ruehle, PT bridge pastor

Candidate Name/s Submitted to Call Committee:

  • Atonement, Muskego (associate pastor)
  • First United, Sheboygan (FT associate pastor)
  • Holy Trinity, West Allis (FT pastor) – Rev. Dean Natterstad, FT interim
  • Lake Park, Milwaukee (3/4 to FT Associate pastor)
  • Our Savior’s, Oconomowoc (FT Administration pastor)
  • St. Mark, Cudahy (PT solo pastor) – Rev. Wendy Wirth Brock, PT bridge pastor

Calls Extended & Accepted

  • Church of the Resurrection, Pewaukee (FT pastor) – Rev. Kimberly Jordan
  • Lutheran Church of the Resurrection, Racine (FT pastor) – Rev. Karen Pahl
  • Messiah, Twin Lakes (PT pastor) – two year term call – Rev. Melody Brink
  • Our Savior’s, Oconomowoc (FT Education pastor) – Rev. Tracy Polzin

Rostered Ministers in Transition

As of March 16, 2018

Rostered Ministers Who Have Recently Changed Calls

   Within the Greater Milwaukee Synod
  • Rev. Kathy Brown, from called pastor at Messiah, Twin Lakes to interim pastor at House of Prayer, Franklin
  • Rev. Kimberly Jordan, from transition pastor at Our Savior’s, Oconomowoc to called pastor at Church of the Resurrection, Pewaukee
  • Rev. Karen Pahl, from interim pastor at St Paul, Kenosha to called pastor at Lutheran Church of the Resurrection, Racine
   To the Greater Milwaukee Synod
  • Rev. Melody Brink, from OLC to 2 year term call pastor at Messiah, Twin Lakes
  • Rev. Tracy Polzin, from Northern Great Lakes Synod, to called pastor at Our Savior Lutheran Church, Oconomowoc
   From the Greater Milwaukee Synod
  • Rev. Harold Eppley, from OLC to resigned from the ELCA roster
  • Rev. Matthew Lee, from ELCA ecumenical ministry to the roster of the Presbyterian Church USA
  • Rev. Wayne Nieminen, from GMS roster to Rocky Mountain Synod
  • Rev. Daniel Vojta, from Peace, Burlington to South Central Synod
  • Rev. Crista Von Zychlin, from GMS roster to Rocky Mountain Synod

Rostered Ministers Recently Moved to On Leave from Call (OLC)

  • Rev. Gabriel Marcano, from called pastor at Emaus, Racine to OLC

Rostered Ministers Recently Retired

  • Rev. Kathy Boadwine, from senior pastor at St Luke, Waukesha to retirement
  • Rev. Ingrid Huebner, from OLC to retirement
  • Rev. David Larson, from President and CEO at LSS of WI and Upper MI to retirement
  • Rev. Deb Ohrtman, from pastor at Mt Zion, Wauwatosa to retirement
  • Rev. Steve Ohrtman, from pastor at Mt Zion, Wauwatosa to retirement
  • Rev. Norene Smith, from pastor at Bayshore, Whitefish Bay to retirement
  • Rev. Larry Westfield, from Lutheran Planned Giving to retirement

Retired Rostered Ministers Who Have Transferred Synods

  • Rev. Harvey Berg, from GMS roster to East Central Synod roster

Rostered Ministers Who Have Recently Died

  • Rev. John Eilertson died on March 4th. His funeral service will be on Sunday, March 18th at 3:00pm at Holy Cross Lutheran Church, W156N8131 Pilgrim Road, Menomonee Falls. Visitation is from 1:00pm until the time of service at 3:00pm. Rev. Eilertson’s obituary can be viewed at the following website link:

    We give thanks for Rev. Eilertson’s ministry among us, and keep his family, friends and community in our prayers as they grieve his death and celebrate his life. May light perpetual shine upon him.