Pastor Dana Hendershot received her undergraduate at Wittenberg University. Then after serving 5 years as a youth minister she felt a call to attend the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago for a Master of Divinity and graduated with an emphasis in science and religion in 2008. She joined the staff of Immanuel as pastor in 2011, following her first call in North Naples, Florida. In Florida, she learned of her love for advocacy by working alongside the Coalition of Immokalee Workers and serving on the Interfaith Action of SW Florida board of directors. Since moving to Michigan she has spent a great deal of time advocating for the homeless and helped to form Mount Pleasant, Michigan’s first rotating homeless shelter. She also serves on the board for the Lutheran Alliance for Faith, Science, and Technology and Central Michigan University’s Institutional Review Board. She has been published in workingpreacher.org, The Lutheran Partners magazine, and The Lutheran. In her spare time, she is often around water. She has a cockatiel bird (Zipporah) and two Brittney Spaniels (Ocean & Brook). At night she loves to be outside with her telescope looking at the awe and wonder of God’s universe. Mostly, she looks forward to sitting down with you over coffee or beer to talk about your hopes, dreams, and about God’s work in your life.
Andrea RedmondOFFICE MANAGER
In September 2010, I joined the staff at Immanuel, serving as the office manager. From the very beginning, I have been blessed to feel so very welcomed by the congregation of Immanuel. I have lived in Mt. Pleasant for more than twenty years. Upon graduating from High School in the metro-Detroit area, I moved here to study at Central Michigan University, where I attained a degree in Child Development and Sociology. During my time of study, I met my future husband, and decided to stay in the area. Since that time, we married and now have a family. Our 3 children now keep us both busy and proud with school, sports and all of the other extracurriculars! In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with family and friends. Summer barbeques and football get-togethers are some of my favorites!
Mernie BidstrupORGANIST & CHOIR DIRECTOR
Mernie Bidstrup was the organist at Immanuel from 1986- 2006 and has been back at Immanuel since Aug. 2011. She has a BME and a MA in music from CMU. She has studied organ with Dr. Mary Lou Kney and Dr. Steven Egler. Since her retirement from teaching, she has become a Reiki Master. She is a passionate animal advocate and is happiest at home with her dogs, cats and donkeys.
Thomas StrandskovYOUTH MINISTRY COORDINATOR & TECH GURU
I grew up here in Mt. Pleasant and in this church. I am a current CMU student studying Biology and will be graduating in May 2022 and hope to go to grad school for Genetic Counseling. In my free time I love to hang out with my friends and play video games. As a member of the youth group, I loved going on mission trips and to the National Gathering in Detroit and Houston, TX. In the summers, I especially love going to family camp at Camp Nawakwa in Arendtsville, PA. Family camp allowed me to make lifelong friends and learn more about God out in a new environment and with new people. I would love to share more about camp with anyone who is interested!
Lacey ConnorCHILDRENS MINISTRY COORDINATOR
Originally from the Black Hills of South Dakota, Lacey has a Bachelor’s of Nursing Degree from South Dakota State University. She was an active member and then Co-President of Nurses Christian Fellowship. Throughout college she enjoyed working with and teaching youth about careers in Health Care. She also has work experience teaching teens in a public school setting how to make healthy lifestyle choices. Teaching has always been a passion of hers and one of her favorite aspects of nursing.
Lacey is married to her college sweetheart, Scott, and they have two children, Emma & Augustus. They have called Michigan home for the last five years and enjoy spending their time outdoors hiking in the woods and going canoeing. They have three Dachshunds and a lot of fish. Lacey is also a member of the church chancel choir and has also volunteered with VBS and the Children’s Christmas Program.