Mount Olive’s staff and its 13-member parish council, the Vestry, work together toward the congregation’s mission: In the presence of God, being the presence of God.
Pastor: The Rev. Joseph G. Crippen
Mount Olive’s pastor since 2010, Joseph is a gifted presider, counselor, and preacher who’s passionate about proclaiming God’s love for all people and serving the church as it seeks to faithfully pursue its mission.
- Hometown: Worthington, Minnesota
- Education: Gustavus Adolphus College, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago
- Previous parishes: Our Savior’s, Cleveland, Minnesota; St. John’s, Northfield, Minnesota; Vicar at Luther Memorial, Syracuse, Nebraska
- Family: Married to Mary, four adult children, lives in Bloomington
- Hobbies: Movies, novels, music, and enjoying an exceptional cup of tea
Mount Olive’s cantor since 2001. Retired artistic director of the National Lutheran Choir, David is one of the Twin Cities’ most celebrated organists and choral directors. His frequent leadership for hymn festivals and workshops, along with his guest appearances and published work, have influenced church music nationwide.
- Hometown: Minneapolis
- Education: Augsburg College; University of Minnesota
- Parish musician: Chicago; Seattle; Berlin, Germany
- Faculty: Gustavus Adolphus, Elmhurst College, Luther Seminary
- Family: Husband to the late hymnist Susan Palo Cherwien, two adult children, lives in St. Louis Park
- Hobby: Cars, classic and not (He has owned more than 70, usually one at a time.)
Coordinator of Neighborhood Ministry: Jim Bargmann
Mount Olive’s coordinator of neighborhood ministries as of 2019, Jim has training and experience in leading educational ministries and extensive experience coordinating community service oriented programs and initiatives. Jim has a passion for caring for those in our South Minneapolis community, making connections with other social service organizations, and helping the people of the Mount Olive community use their gifts for service to others.
- Hometown: Aurora, Colorado
- Education: Concordia University, St. Paul
- Experience: Director of Christian Education
- Family: A son and a daughter, lives in Woodbury
- Hobbies: Hiking, photography, and reading
Administrative Assistant: Cha Posz
Drawn to Mount Olive in 2001 by her love for liturgy and music, Cha has been a talented and cheerful servant of Lutheran congregations for many years. Her tasks include overseeing the office, preparing publications, and care-taking many behind-the-scenes aspects of parish life.
- Hometown: New Brighton, Minnesota
- Education: Augustana College, Sioux Falls, South Dakota
- Experience: Former associate in ministry, church musician, youth director, synod worship committee member, and parish administrator
- Family: Married to Kurt, two adult sons, lives in New Brighton
- Hobbies: Photography, gardening
Arriving at Mount Olive in 2022, Jose brings a wide range of experience to the congregation. He has managed kitchens, driven delivery trucks and taxis, and has worked in concrete construction, remodeling and house-cleaning. In his off-hours, Jose enjoys spending time with his wife, Maria, and their three children—two daughters and a son. The Morochos live in south Minneapolis and are close neighbors to the church.
Hometown: Cuenca, Ecuador (A city of 650,000 people high in the Andes Mountains )
Education: Cuenca public schools
Experience: A wide variety of jobs, from kitchen management to food delivery and construction.
Family: Married, three children, lives in south Minneapolis
Hobbies: Visiting parks and pursuing outdoor activities with family and friends
Vicar: Lauren Mildahl
Lauren is the 54th vicar to serve at Mount Olive. Vicars are seminary students who are assigned to the parish for a full year of pastoral experience and learning. Some vicars serve this year as their final year of seminary, others do it in their third year and return for a final year of classes. A successful internship is one of the ELCA’s requirements to earn approval for ordination into the ministry of Word and Sacrament.
- Hometown: Bellaire, Texas
- Education: Carleton College, Northfield, Minnesota (BA); University of Pittsburgh (MLIS); student at Luther Seminary (in MDiv program)
- Family: Married to Andrew, lives in Apple Valley
- Hobbies: reading, playing board games, riding bicycle
Click here for a list of vicars who have served at Mount Olive.
The Vestry meets on the second Monday of each month at 7 p.m. in the East Assembly Room. Occasional highlights from each meeting can be found in the Olive Branch. Contact the church office for information about serving on a Vestry committee.
President: Chandler Molbert, firstname.lastname@example.org
Vice President: Candy Husemoller, email@example.com
Secretary: Margaret Gohman, firstname.lastname@example.org
Treasurer: John Bjork, email@example.com
Congregational Life: Lora Dundek, firstname.lastname@example.org
Education: David Engen, email@example.com
Evangelism: Eric Manuel, firstname.lastname@example.org
Global Ministry: Judy Hinck, email@example.com
Neighborhood Ministry: Cynthia Prosek, firstname.lastname@example.org
Property: Carol Martinson, email@example.com
Stewardship: Julie Erlandson, firstname.lastname@example.org
Worship: Dan Hellerich, email@example.com
Youth and Family: ———, firstname.lastname@example.org
Advisory Committee for Care of the Earth/Climate Justice
A task force of the Vestry, the committee encourages Mount Olive members and friends to live faithfully by caring for the earth. Click here to learn more.