John Nelson – Senior Pastor
As senior pastor here at Gethsemane I am passionate about helping people grow in their walk of faith. Having been raised on the east coast and serving in ministry out west as well as in Minnesota, I have found a wide variety of ways people are engaged by God in their faith life. I love to help unique individuals find how their own story is intertwined with God’s story, and that together we make up God’s church for the sake of the world. I work with the leadership of this church and our staff to make sure we are united in that goal. In addition I teach young and old, am involved in our community as a Police chaplain, and respond to the pastoral care needs of our congregation.

I have been blessed to be married to my wonderful and talented wife Stephanie, whom I met in college at St. Olaf, and we have two amazing kids in high school, Sarah and Tyler. When not at church you can find me coaching or cheering them on in their various sport activities. 

I have found Gethsemane to be a place for all to belong who want to be engaged in what God is doing in our neighborhoods as well as in our homes.

Sarah Moat – Associate Pastor
Although I have vivid memories of “preaching” to a congregation of stuffed animals and dolls when I was just six years old, it was a long and winding road to ordination. I started as a youth director after college, before spending a decade in seminary while simultaneously spending as much time as possible at home with young children. During that time I also attended Christos Center and became a certified spiritual director. I came to Gethsemane in 2010 after my first call as Teaching Pastor at St. Andrew Lutheran in Eden Prairie. As the Associate Pastor I have the privilege of focusing on social ministry, education, caring ministry and global mission, in addition to shared preaching and teaching. I am proud of the many partnerships that we have locally and globally.

My husband and I live in Chanhassen with our three daughters. I love to watch the Minnesota Twins, spend time in nature, enjoy lazy mornings with a cup of coffee on my deck, hike, and learn. We are on a family quest to visit all 30 major league baseball stadiums – we have a long way to go!

Paul McKenzie – Director of Music and Fine Arts
I am Paul McKenzie, Director of Music and Fine Arts. I work with adult and youth choirs, handbells, and with the Art Committee. 
I am a Minnesota native and attended Concordia College in Moorhead, MN, where I received my BA in Music education – vocal and instrumental. I have played in the US Army Band in Berlin, and taught high school in Mahtomedi. I received my Master of Music degree from Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ, and have served Presbyterian and Lutheran churches Pennsylvania, Illinois and Minnesota. I am also a free-lance percussionist and enjoy good theater and good wine. 

My work at Gethsemane has deepened my understanding of the value of the arts to help change lives and unite people.

Click here to e-mail Paul

Laura Twedell – Director of Confirmation and Youth Ministries
I have been doing some kind of youth ministry for the last 14 years including being a summer camp counselor at Presbyterian Clearwater Forest in Deerwood, MN, leading VBS at my home church, and volunteering at a church during seminary. I served as the Director of Youth Ministry at United Lutheran Church in Grand Forks for almost five years and enjoyed getting to know the youth and their families through trips, confirmation, campfire worships, and other church events. Most recently I served at Good Earth Village camp in Spring Valley, MN as the Retreat Manager. In my free time I enjoy finding new trails and parks to explore with my dog Zoey, finding new places to photograph, going to art museums and festivals, and spending time at the lake in Walker, MN with my family. 

Mark Fideldy – Office Manager
I began working at Gethsemane in 2011 as Organist. In 2014 I joined the office staff first as Membership & Data Systems Manager, and Office Manager since November, 2017.  Being passionate about music and administration, these roles seem like a natural fit – and my work is fun! I’m an avid runner, need my morning coffee, and have excitedly taken up sewing in the last couple years. One of the greatest joys of my work is being able to get others excited about the work we do here. Ministry is a living, breathing thing, and a strong, positive energy is vital to its success.

Nancy Jo Sullivan, Children's Ministry Director
I come to you with over 25 years of ministry experience. Having directed many parish
programs, I have worked with every age level from preschoolers to those who are facing the transitions of aging. I am skilled at writing curriculum, teaching engaging Gospel lessons, and leading age-appropriate worship services. I have a passion for equipping parents to be “bearers of faith” and I look forward to training, encouraging and supporting our amazing volunteers.

My most recent ministry position was at Allina-Regina hospital where I served as a chaplain. While working with families and residents who were impacted by dementia and Alzheimer’s, I discovered that the faith lessons we learn as children are not easily forgotten. I am convinced that the hymns, prayers, and stories we pass down to our kids are like seeds that will bear fruit for a lifetime. I look forward to planting seeds with you!