About Us

Core Values

We are a faith community participating in the life of God, both as sheer gift to us and also as a calling to the neighborhoods of Northeast Minneapolis. We are an intergenerational community that proudly celebrates our history while joining together with younger generations to follow where God is leading. We build our community through faith practices like prayer, dwelling in the Word, and hospitality.

Our Mission

Our mission is to learn, live, and share God’s Word.

  • Learn who God is through Jesus Christ
  • Live as agents of the Holy Spirit in our lives
  • Share the life and love that God offers to the world
Our Vision

Our vision is to discover our identity for the 21st century. This discovery will grow out of our own story that God has blessed us with. On this journey, we hope to learn:

  • how to form a dynamic intergenerational community that nourishes faith,
  • how to empower our members for leadership and callings, and
  • how to deepen our outreach and connection in the neighborhood.

Our Worship

We worship together on Sunday mornings at 9:30 a.m. and enjoy a time of socializing and fellowship after the service.

Our worship is a public event, not a private club. We believe Christ lived and died for all people, so regardless of religious background, sexual orientation, or political leanings, everyone who is on a spiritual journey is welcome. We worship each week because God has gathered us for a reclamation project. Born anew through baptism, we learn together to live in faith and servanthood. In God’s Word and the sacraments, God has promised to be with us to nurture, guide, and send us. Our worship is traditional in style and music but firmly focused on the contemporary world, sometimes with video clips!

From September to May, join us for education hour after Sunday worship:

  • Sunday school for grades K-5
  • Youth group for grades 6-12
  • Adult forum for adults of all ages

We invite you join us for worship and fellowship!

Our History

When Pastor Richard Gerberding founded Mt. Carmel in the early 1920s, Northeast Minneapolis was then at the far-flung fringes of Minneapolis. Pastor Gerberding held Mt. Carmel’s first service on December 6, 1925 in the glassed-in front porch of Eling Larsen. A year later on December 12, 1926, the growing congregation met for dedication services in their own new church building. The church continued to grow slowly, struggling through the Great Depression and later WWII.

The 1950s and early ’60s were an exciting time for Mt. Carmel. Membership boomed and building updates flourished, including a new sanctuary dedicated in 1954 and a new parish hall a few years later. Members stayed busy in the community.

The 1960s and ’70s were decades of social change. Women gained the right to sit on the church council and become ordained. The congregational demographics began to change as the Northeast neighborhood changed. Families moved farther out to the suburbs, leaving an increasingly older congregation. Although membership numbers declined after 1982, morale and community involvement remained high. Mt. Carmel opened the Mt. Carmel Child Care center in 1989.

The congregation continued to ride the ups and downs found in any church through the end of the 20th century. The early years of the 2000s saw renewal and the adoption of our mission statement: Learn, Live, and Share God’s Word. We continue to discern the part we play in God’s work in the world.

Want to read the full history of our 91 years? Check out this impressive account written by some of our members here.


Our Staff

John Strommen

Pastor

Pastor John is a lifelong resident of the Twin Cities, now living in Plymouth. He is married to Heidi and has two sons, Thomas and Connor. Pastor John has a background in youth and family ministry as well as renewing churches for mission and spiritual growth. He is currently enrolled in the Masters of Theology program at Luther Seminary. Pastor John is also an avid photographer and a fan of films, jazz, and classical music.

Contact John

Megan Crosby

Music Director

Megan is the Director of Music at Mt. Carmel. She has been playing piano (and now organ) for church services since the age of thirteen. Megan was born and raised in Iowa and moved to St. Paul after graduating from Luther College in Decorah, IA. When she isn’t playing piano or singing in a choir, she enjoys traveling, reading, and cooking.

Contact Megan

Jeanette Burmeister

Child Care Director

Mt. Carmel holds a dear place in Jeanette's heart, as she has been a member since the mid 1960s. In September 1989, she joined the teaching staff of Mt. Carmel Child Care Center and became the Director at the end of 1997. She loves Northeast Minneapolis and was raised and went to school here. When not joyfully spending time with the children, you can find her gardening, traveling, and reading.

Contact Jeanette

Hope Dieringer

Faith Formation Director

I'm a second-year seminary student at Luther pursuing my Masters in Systematic Theology. I'm originally from Mason City, Iowa. My husband Thomas and I met at North Park University in Chicago where we both studied philosophy. After graduating I served in Szombathely, Hungary with the ELCA program Young Adults in Global Mission. We now live in St.Paul and enjoy fostering dogs, going for walks, and reading.

Our Congregational Council

The Congregational Council is a group of elected congregation members responsible for leading the church in its mission. Interested in contacting members of the council? Contact the office for more information.

Lory Dubbels, Secretary

Audrey Erickson, Vice President

Matti Gurney

Barb Hollister

Stephenie Labandz

Diane Langer, Treasurer

Paul Lathrop, President

Dave Olson

Tim Quinlan

Tiffany Ruser