Rev. Bruce Nelson
Interim Senior Pastor
I am the interim pastor at St. Paul's. I started my ministry here on May 1, 2018 and will be here until the new pastor arrives. Here is a little bit of history about myself. I grew up in Northern Minnesota and graduated from high school in Park Rapids and then from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis Campus. I attended Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri and graduated from Luther Seminary in St. Paul.
My first call was to Pollock Lutheran Church in Pollock, South Dakota followed by a three year call into the U.S. Army as a chaplain at Ft. Lewis, Washington. I then moved back to Minnesota and served in Jackson at Our Savior's and Fron Lutheran in Starbuck. I then moved to Minneapolis and became a pastor at Bethany Lutheran Church in South Minneapolis, 3901 36th Ave. So. I retired in 2010 but was called back to help start Peace Lutheran Church in Watertown, Minnesota from 2010 - 2012.
Jane and I have been married for forty-four years. She is a farm girl from Springfield, Minnesota and I am a small town boy from Park rapids. We have two children - our son Travis who is a professor of Political Science at the U. of Wisconsin, Platteville - and our daughter Jaime who lives with her husband Tor Tuseth in Minnetonka. They have two beautiful girls - Story who is six and Gemma who is four.
We have lived in downtown Minneapolis for seventeen years. Besides preaching, I love to canoe, camp, read fiction and am currently writing a novel with no end in sight.
Misrak Adoga was born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. She grew up with three brothers and four sisters as well as other children that her parents welcomed into their home and cared for through the years. From her mother, Yimesgen, Misrak learned first-hand what it means to love others deeply and sacrificially. Misrak attended college in India where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree. Then in 2000, she moved to the United States. Several years later, she completed a course in Medical Administrative Assistant at Rasmussen College in Minnesota. Misrak began working at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in 2002 and she has served faithfully as Church Office Administrator since that time. Misrak has a passion for prayer and prayer ministry and can testify to many miraculous answers to prayer in the lives of her family members. She is married to Thomas and they have one daughter, Elul. In her spare time, Misrak enjoys knitting, watching movies and spending time with family and friends.
Lois Bodurtha came to St. Paul's in 1976 as the organist, and since 1981 has served as organist, choir director, worship team leader, pianist and vocalist. She considers it a joy and a privilege to lead the congregation in worship, teaching and encouraging people to develop their talents so they can use them to glorify God.
Lois is Director of Global Worship, an annual concert of worship at St. Paul's featuring Twin Cities' musicians from across the globe, now in its 10th year. Look for collages of past Global Worship pictures displayed in the church lobby. Lois was editor of the book, "Portraits," by Patricia Lokke, a compilation of biographies of St. Paul's members originally written for the St. Paul's Messenger.
As an independent piano teacher, Lois has instructed many piano students in her home studio in Eagan. She is an active member of music teacher organizations and her students participate regularly in exams, contests and recitals. She has been singing soprano for ten years as a member of Exultate, a professional choir in the Twin Cities. Lois and her husband Jim have four children and eight grandchildren.
Carl & Cheryl Rich
Carl and Cheryl Rich have a long history with St. Paul's Church. Carl grew up in the Phillip's neighborhood and started playing softball with the St. Paul's team in 1978. Cheryl started attending in 1980. As singles, they began working with the youth and children in the church and in the neighborhood. They were married at St. Paul's in 1985 and began preparing for the mission field. Carl and Cheryl were sent out by the church and worked in the Philippines for the next twenty-two years with YWAM (Youth With A Mission). Upon returning in 2011, they serve the church community in the area of pastoral care to shut-ins and reaching out to our neighbors in the Phillips community through Bible clubs for kids and MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) and helping in other mission activities.
Carl and Cheryl love the cultural diversity of the Phillips neighborhood. Carl shares his passion for the missions by facilitating the Kairos Course. This course has been used by many churches to motivate and prepare their people for missions world-wide and next door. During their free time, Carl loves to fish the lakes, while Cheryl prefers to walk around them usually chatting with a friend. Carl and Cheryl have one son. David is a second year student studying nursing at Rasmussen College.