(We thank our graduates for telling us how the Lord led them into the ministry. – Ed.)
Meet Pastor David Schaller
David Paul Schaller was born on January 15, 1974 to Pastor Paul and Nona Schaller. He was baptized at St. Stephen Lutheran Church, Hayward, Calif., where his father was serving as pastor. In 1980 his father accepted a call to St. John’s Lutheran Church, Clarkston, Wash. where the family then moved. David was confirmed at St. John’s on May 22, 1988.
He attended public schools in Clarkston, through the tenth grade. In the fall of 1990 he enrolled in Immanuel Lutheran High School, Eau Claire, Wis. He graduated from high school in 1992, and continued at Immanuel for college, graduating in 1996 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in pre-theological studies.
The Lord led David to enter seminary in the fall of 1996. While attending seminary he vicared under Pastor Steven Sippert in Valentine, Nebr. and Pastor Delwyn Maas in Golden, Colo. He graduated on May 22, 1999. While going to school in Eau Claire, he also enjoyed being involved with the Immanuel Lutheran tour choir for many years.
In June of this year he was married to Sarah (nee) Lau. Sarah had taught at Trinity Lutheran School in Watertown, S.Dak. On July 11, 1999 David was ordained and installed as pastor of Redeemer Lutheran Church at Sister Lakes, Michigan.
Meet Pastor Stephen Sydow
On April 12, 1974 Beth Sydow was serving as organist for Good Friday services at Berea Lutheran Church in Inver Grove Heights, Minn. Stephen was on the way, and was born to Beth and Jim early on the morning of the 13th. He was baptized by Pastor Paul Larsen on April 21, 1974, thus beginning his new life in Christ.
He grew up in Fridley, Minn. with Pastor Daniel Fleischer of Grace congregation as his spiritual shepherd throughout grade school. He went through all eight grades at Grace Lutheran School and soon read all the books in its library. Weekly trips to the public library also maintained his interest in reading. Along with piano and cello lessons, baseball and basketball teams, and short-lived guitar lessons, Stephen’s parents managed to keep their son out of too much trouble.
In the Fall of 1988, Stephen began his career at Immanuel Lutheran High School and College in Eau Claire, never suspecting that this campus would be his home for most of the next eleven years. High school years were filled with sports, as well as with tour choir and with acting in musicals and thespian productions. Friends given by God during these years turned out to be the greatest blessing, for they were a constant source of spiritual support and encouragement.
Upon graduation from high school, Stephen enrolled at the University of Minnesota with aerospace engineering as a major. Within a few short months, however, the Lord brought him to realize that was not his calling. After one semester he returned to Immanuel in the Pre-theology program. He was immediately involved again in the Tour Choir and added part-time jobs working in the fieldhouse and coaching. He also worked for Bester Bros. Moving Company in the Twin Cities off and on for eight years.
During college years Stephen met his future wife, Kelly Wente. In Seminary he served as vicar at Messiah Lutheran, Hales Corners, Wis. and at Faith Lutheran, Coloma, Mich.
Stephen and Kelly were married on June 27, 1998. The new Mrs. Sydow supported her husband during his final year of Seminary through her job as an administrative assistant at Luther Hospital in Eau Claire.
Stephen Sydow received a Divine Call into the public ministry on April 14, 1999 to Grace Lutheran Church of Live Oak, Florida. He was ordained and installed on July 11th–by none other than the pastor who had baptized him, Paul Larsen.