Pastor Jim

God will always be your friend! We leave worship with that powerful reminder because it is absolutely true. I am living proof of that friendship! I am overjoyed to be in ministry and partnership with the people of Our Savior’s! Born and raised as the youngest of seven in the south suburbs of Chicago, I grew up in the Roman Catholic tradition. My parents taught me from an early age about the importance of faith, church, service and community. I felt a desire to serve in ministry since the second grade and thought God was calling me to become a priest. My mother died suddenly in 1991 and in that time I felt God’s intense presence and invitation to serve others. After graduating from high school, I entered the minor seminary at Loyola University in Chicago and then attended St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein (near Six Flags in Gurnee) for four years. I was ordained a priest in May 2005 and served at two large parishes in the Chicagoland.

In my second assignment I met a young woman named Amy and my heart melted as I felt God calling me in a slightly different direction. I took a leave of absence from ministry to grow a relationship with this incredible woman. We went church shopping and God brought us to an ELCA church where we were eventually married and saw our little girl Anna baptized. The pastor was very supportive of our stories and encouraged us to consider ministering in the ELCA. After much prayer and discernment, we felt this was how God was calling us and so I completed additional course work and interviewed and entered the call process for pastoral ministry in an ELCA congregation. I accepted a call to serve at Barneveld Lutheran Church in Barneveld, Wisconsin (just West of Madison) in January 2016. We welcomed Peter to our family in July 2017 and Liam in October 2020!

During the pandemic we moved back closer to our families in the Chicagoland area accepting a call to serve as Senior Pastor at Messiah Lutheran Church in Wauconda, Illinois. However, we soon realized this was not the best fit for our family, and so we re-entered the call process and happily found this community of faith here at Our Savior’s! I began ministry here on December 1st, 2021. Amy, Anna, Peter, Liam and I are very happy to be living and ministering in West Bend! Through the ups and downs, the highs and lows, the good times and challenging times of life, God’s friendship has sustained us and will for you, too! We would love to have you come pray and be part of OSLC’s mission “to gather, explore and celebrate the wonder of Christ!” Come be a friend of God and a friend of ours.