About our Pastor

Pastor Ryan, Natalie and Jonah

I grew up in Graymont, Illinois on a farm with my four older siblings and my parents. My wife, Natalie, and I both attended Wartburg College where we met our first year on Valentine’s Day at a bible study. I was very active in the music department at Wartburg. I was in the Wartburg Choir all four years and was their president my senior year.

Throughout college, we worked at Camp Ewalu as counselors and coordinators of various programs. We fell in love with outdoor ministry and each other while working at camp. Our love of camping continued after working at camp. We both graduated in 2017 with Bachelors of Arts. Natalie received a degree in Elementary Education and I received a degree in Religion: Pre-Seminary.   

After getting married on July 1st, 2017 we moved to Conway, PA, a suburb of Pittsburgh, PA where I attended seminary at North American Lutheran Seminary/Trinity School for Ministry and received my Master’s of Divinity in 2019. We are excited to be back in the midwest to be closer to family and be back in a more rural setting. I was called here to Emmons Lutheran Church in April 2020 to start in June to be your Pastor.

This past year, we welcomed our son, Jonah Timothy, to our family on June 20, 2020. He has been absolute joy this year to watch grow and learn all about life. He is all smiles and loves to meet new people all the time. He looks forward to meeting each of you and your families.

Throughout over four years of marriage we have enjoyed cooking, traveling, and visiting national parks/historic sights. We love to spend time in the kitchen cooking and baking together. One of Natalie’s favorite things to make is homemade spaghetti noodles, which we have tradition of making for her birthday each year.  One of my favorite things to make is pie because it reminds me of the pies my grandmother used to make at family gatherings. After getting engaged, we bought a National Park Stamp book and have been traveling and obtaining stamps from different historic sights along the way. This summer we headed to 7 national parks where we got several stamps: the San Antonio Missions NHP, Lyndon B. Johnson NHP, Yellowstone NP, Grant-Kohrs Ranch NHS, Glacier NP, Padre Island NS, and the Palo Alto Battlefield NHP. We have made it a goal of ours to go to all of them over our lifetime. There are a ton of them but we are making lots of memories along the way! Although this is only a snippet of who we are, we look forward to sharing more and getting to know each of you. 

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