Dear Risen Lord disciples---
“When I grow up, I want to be a pastor like my dad,” my seven-year old self shared at the Sunday dinner table of friends from the congregation my father served in Greenwood—Concordia Lutheran Church (LCMS). From 1st-12th grades I lived in the parsonage at the end of the parking lot on Howard Road.
Despite the odds of being raised in a denomination where women aren’t ordained and over 40 years later, here I am. I graduated from Valparaiso in 1994, and married my college sweetheart. After moving around the country with his job and trying my luck at multiple teaching jobs and climbing the corporate ladder at a mobile phone company, we had a son and a daughter.
When my kids were quite young, my sense of call re-awakened while serving as the Director of Education at St. Marks in Wapakoneta, Ohio. Soon after his job transfer that took us all to Portland, Oregon, my husband, an avid bicyclist, died in an accident. Discernment became imminent. Newly-widowed with a four and seven-year old, I entered Wartburg Theological Seminary in 2007. My internship was in Greeley, CO. After graduation in 2011, I served an ELCA congregation in Sterling, CO for five years and another in LaSalle, CO for 4 ½ years.
I am overjoyed to return to the area to be near my family: my parents, four sisters and their families. Certainly, my greatest joys are my son Alex, who is entering his fourth year studying mechanical engineering at the University of Wyoming, and my daughter McKenna, who begins her freshman year as a nursing student this fall at Valparaiso University.
I look forward to getting to know the good people at Risen Lord and to serve and walk alongside you all as you discern in this transitional time the next chapter of bearing Christ’s love for the sake of all people in God’s beloved yet hurting world. The good news is that Jesus has already gone ahead of us. May the Spirit make our hearts open and ready before rounding the next bend.
Yours in Christ,
Pastor Wendy Kalan