We are pleased to introduce our new high school youth minister, JD Mechelke (pronounced MEH-kell-key). JD brings great experience and genuine passion to this role, as he cares deeply about passing on faith to our youth. With his recent travels to El Salvador and connections to Redeemer Lutheran Church, our partner church in North Minneapolis, we are excited about his leadership skills and the gifts he will share with our community of faith. Thanks to Ryan Gilbertson, Gretchen Lieving, Doris Pagelkopf, and Jonathan Rundman for serving on the interview team with me.
In Christ, Pastor Stephanie
JD Mechelke grew up in Stillwater, Minnesota. He is currently living in Minneapolis and attending Augsburg College for his Bachelors in Youth and Family Ministry. His hobbies include backcountry camping in a canoe or in the mountains, reading literature and nonfiction, and being a theology nerd. JD particularly enjoys the study of Latin American liberation theology along with the theology of death and dying. JD's sister and parents now live in Englewood, FL and is lucky enough to visit them on occasion, escaping to a more tropical climate.
What part of youth ministry excited you the most?
High-school youth are naturally faced with the question "What do I want to do with my life?" Especially as their senior year comes and goes, they have to face the question of "What do I do now?" One of my passions in youth ministry is vocational formation: being in solidarity with young people as they discern the meeting place of their gifts and the needs of the world. As young people eventually leave the church walls to their "what do I do now?" I hope that they have come to realize that God is calling for them.