The core team was formed in April 2023 to assist in leading this ministry.
Meet the team members and learn more about the team’s role in discovering sustainable mission.
Rie Gilsdorf, St. John’s Member
I feel most ’alive’ at St. John’s on Easter Eve, taking in the Mystery with all my senses: smelling incense, feeling drops of water, hearing music, seeing all the flowers, sensing the procession all around us. I wanted to be a part of the Sustainable Mission Team because the Church and the world are in a situation that calls for real creativity, and that’s exciting to me. My hope is that we become a “watershed” people, linked to and caring for the land, people and creatures both upstream and downstream from us.
Lynnell Mickelsen, St. John’s Member
I feel most ‘alive’ at St. John’s when I’m singing some of Chad and Wendy’s communion songs, during the coffee hour–just experiencing the community, and at a recent funeral because the truth about mental illness was spoken and centered on love and community. I became a part of this team because St. John’s is on track to slowly fade and shrink—at a time when we and our neighborhood really need community, a sense of transcendence and yet we have much to offer. So I would like us to have the courage to try new things that will bring in new people. I hope that we use a combination of Episcopal liturgy AND new/traditional music and activities and build a church that attracts Millennials and Gen. Z with a spirit of fun, social justice, progressive Xianity and strong community.
Alex Musial, St. John’s Member
Hillary Clayburgh, St. John’s Member
I feel most ‘alive’ at St. John’s when singing together during services. I love the feeling of all of us focused in celebration, praise and reflection together. Last fall I had the opportunity to attend our diocesan convention where I was inspired by the discussions of all the creative ways communities were tending their roots, thinking outside the traditional, while at the same time maintaining our history. I became part of this team because I have really enjoyed our short time at St. John’s and was looking forward to the opportunity to help St. John’s explore what that might look for our community. I hope that we can continue to serve our immediate community by providing each other ways to explore our faith, spirituality, and find community and connection. In doing so, I am hoping that we can take our gifts out to serve the wide community and world.
Stacy Walters, St. John’s Member
I feel most ‘alive’ at St. John’s during Holy Week services–somber, reflective, filled with the Holy Spirit, as well as Pilgrimages to the Camino in Spain and to Greece, intergenerational activities, and Spirit Group on Wednesday. I am part of this team because I feel called to think creatively and plan for the future with hope. Our collective vision, involving all St. John’s members, will be co-created and sustainable. I hope we can be vibrant, filled with the Spirit, walking the way of Jesus’ love, financially stable and thriving.
Michael Morrow, St. John’s Member
As much as I love the liturgy, the preaching, and the volunteer projects, it’s the community that makes me feel ‘alive’ at St. John’s. It is great to be part of a community, where we have each other’s backs. This is most in evidence at times of tragedy, like a death of a member, but I sense it in the good times and ordinary times as well. I became a member of this team because as a former treasurer and current finance committee member, I can see that we are on a financially unsustainable path. More importantly, I understand from my time as a Sunday School teacher and raising my own family that we must change to become a community that attracts young people and others not already part of the community. I hope that we can become a community that is more attractive to young people and others, while not losing the essence of what makes St John’s wonderful for those of us who are already here.
Arun Caspram, St. John’s Member
I have felt ‘alive’ at St. John’s when I’m listening to Lisa’s sermons, at the new member dinner in Lynnell and John’s home and listening to our singing ministry. Joining this team is helping me in my own spiritual growth and being connected with people who have a common goal of creating a Spirit-filled community is exciting. My hope is people come to St. John’s when they are trying to find answers to big questions and when they want to truly belong.
Rena Turnham, Minister for Sustainable Mission
I feel most alive at St. John’s during the Prayers of the People, when we sing the responses – I lose myself in the words and the communal experience becomes meditative for me. I said ‘yes’ to St. John’s because this congregation is ahead of the game in seeking to realign its mission with its resources and that’s ripe with possibility and hope. That’s something I’d like to be a part of! I hope that we can boldly and courageously follow the Spirit’s leading in tending to the ‘roots’ and ‘shoots’ of this wonderful congregation and its firm foundation.
Rex McKee, Deacon
Lisa Wiens Heinsohn, Rector