I am passionate about calling the church into its mission to care well and reach out with intentional love. The church is a place where we collectively can do far more for each other and the world, so I love finding ways to include, empower, and deploy others through the community of the church.I graduated from Normandale with an Associate degree in Law Enforcement, from Bethel University with a Bachelors in Bible & Theology, and once more from Bethel for my Masters of Divinity. I am a 2 on the Enneagram, which means I love to help, and I love listening to people’s stories and finding ways to support and encourage them. My top five Strengths Finder are Empathy, Woo, Communication, Positivity, and Developer. My wife Tami and I have been married for 37 years. We have two grown kids, Michael and Nicole, and they have each married and had a daughter and son respectively. We love being together to enjoy the grandkids! I love golfing, smoking a good cigar, placing my hopes in the Minnesota Vikings again and again, and being around the people I love. Especially if I can do a couple of them at the same time!
Sara Wilhelm Garbers
Senior Associate Minister
I am excited to be intentional in fostering ways for connection to take place in the community. What exactly this will look like is something we will co-create together...so please feel free to reach out to me if you have ideas and hope/dreams for what God might be inviting us in the midst of community.I was born and raised in Minnesota, but have also lived in other places around the country. After completing my doctoral coursework, my spouse and I decided to move back to MN and we now own a lovely home in St. Louis Park! I am passionate about matters of faith and justice, particularly focused on gender justice and issues of domestic & sexual violence. In addition to my work at the church, I serve the city of St. Louis Park as a human rights commissioner, my school as a sexual assault advocate, and am completing my doctorate in ethics at Loyola University Chicago.The rest of my time is richly filled by wonderful relationships with dear friends and family, decorating and cleaning, running, hiking, and basically doing anything that involves spending time with my favorite human (and spouse!), Andy.
Sara received her Bachelor of Arts in Communications and Women's Studies from the University of Minnesota Duluth. She then completed a Master of Divinity from Bethel Seminary (MN). She is currently a doctoral candidate at Loyola University Chicago. Her dissertation is entitled "Dangerous Memories": Sexual Violence and Trauma- Towards a Feminist Political Theological Ethics of Memory.
Director of Church Administration
I will assist Colonial with HR and Administrative functions. I am passionate about working with others, developing relationships and systems and sharing the gifts God has given me.
I have been married to Rev. Dr. Cooper for almost 12 years, we are from Texas and relocated to Minnesota about 5 years ago, for the ministry as my husband is a Pastor in Brooklyn Center. Our families remain in Texas, but we are excited to be here in Minnesota.I love watching movies with my husband when time permits, I love walking, lakes/ bodies of water, the Big Bang Theory and WWE every Friday night.
Minister of Emerging Generations
I’m passionate about building up communities and developing people & relationships. We need each other!
I graduated from the University of Maryland-College Park with a Bachelors in Operations Management. I went to Bethel Seminary for my Masters of Divinity with an emphasis in Youth Ministry.
I am a 2 on the Enneagram, which means I get uncomfortable with too much alone time. My top 5 StrengthsFinder are Empathy, Includer, Woo, Developer, and Positivity.
Maureen and I have been married for 3 years and we have three kids - Leo (9), Remy (2), and Sloane (our COVID baby) - and a dog named Marlow (3, I think). Maureen is a pre-K teacher for Minneapolis Public Schools. She is extremely thoughtful and creative and has a heart for those in the margins especially our local refugee and immigrant population.
I love riding my bike, playing basketball, frisbee golf, being bad at regular golf, and fantasy baseball. Whether it’s my wife & boys, friends or community, I’m a social butterfly!
Christian Collins Winn
Teaching Minister and Theologian in Residence
Dr. Christian T. Collins Winn is deeply passionate about helping others understand the gospel as it forms them into justice-seeking and mercy-loving people who walk in the world with humility. He completed a PhD in Theological and Religious Studies at Drew University and was Professor of Historical and Systematic Theology at Bethel University from 2005-2018. He has a decorated academic record, and his research interests include the history of Pietism, ecumenism, theology of Karl Barth, political theology, problematics of race, comparative theology, inter-faith dialogue, historiography of evangelicalism, and the theological significance of the Black Radical Tradition.Alongside these interests, he loves watching movies, listening to jazz and blues, and following college and professional basketball. (Especially his childhood team the UNC Tarheels.) He's happily married to Julie and has two wonderful sons, Jonah and Elijah.
I am the manager of the beautiful facility and grounds of Colonial Church. My greatest satisfaction comes from preparing and maintaining this property for all of the amazing things God does here and the people that make it happen.Both my wife and I grew up in Edina and raised our two sons here. They are both married to Edina grads and live here as well with our 5 awesome grandchildren. I love to travel, live music, sports and, of course, spending as much time as possible with those awesome grandchildren, their activities and families.
Emerging Generations Associate (High School & Young Adults)
I am part of the Youth Ministry Team. I focus on the development of our High School and Emerging Adults ministries. I enjoy finding creative ways to build community. I am passionate about creating space for students to experience God’s love through relationships and community.I identify most with Enneagram type 3 type with a strong type 2 wing. To me this means I’m a go getter, someone who loves to not just have ideas, but make them come to life. I love to see things thrive! I also come to life by serving and helping others. I have two adorable nieces who live in Colorado and try to visit often. I come from a close knit family and love spending time with them. My friends and family bring me great support, joy and reasons to celebrate! I love being outside, biking, hiking, swimming, baking, playing music, and searching for good vinyls.
Emerging Generations Associate (Middle School & Young Adults)
I am part of the youth ministry team, focusing on middle schoolers. (The coolest people at church!) I aim to create a community that is fun, welcoming and draws us closer to God by discovering who He is and the role we have in His story. I graduated from Bethel University with a degree in Social Work and hold a Youth Ministry Certificate from Youth Leadership. .My top 5 StrengthFinder strengths are: Achiever, Believe, Developer, Empathy and Includer. To me this means I get things done because I deeply believe in what I am doing and I love to do it alongside others. I have the greatest partner in my husband Patrick, we were married in 2015 and now live in Richfield with our two children, Connor (3) and Emma - our covid baby. Together we love playing with our neighbors, spending time with our extended family and doing DIY projects! I’m also a sucker for any good (or not so good) reality show.
Emerging Generations Associate (Children & Families)
I work with kiddos and their families, creating engaging and meaningful experiences for them within our greater church community. I’m passionate about people, their stories and connecting the dots between the beautiful things that make each of us unique! I’m a 9 on the Enneagram and my top five strengths are Adaptability, Connectedness, Positivity, Ideation, and Arranger.
I graduated from St. John’s University with a degree in Storytelling and am originally from Edina, but I spent most of my life growing up overseas in South Korea and Japan with my wonderful sister and two amazing parents who are both educators. Some things that bring me joy: A big, bright sun, making music with friends, creating puppets, taking long bike rides and canoe paddles, zipping around on my 1967 Honda Trail 90 scooter, and fun adventures with friends out in nature.
I help Colonial tell clear and compelling stories. I think we all long to find ourselves in a larger story, so it's fun to craft communication that invites people into the story that God is writing around us.I'm a 4 on the Enneagram, which means I value creativity and beauty, and have emotions about everything. Kasey and I have been married for 6 years. We have two daughters, Adalyn and Annika, and they are true gifts. Kasey recently completed her Master's in Marriage and Family Therapy, and together we love crafting family culture organized around simplicity and delight. I love baseball, books, and pretending to like craft beer.
Digital Ministry Manager
I help the Colonial community connect using digital means. This could mean using technology to enhance the in-person experience, or connecting with those not on campus. There will always be reasons people can’t come to the building--I want to make sure they still feel connected to this community when that’s the case.I’m a 9 on the Enneagram, which means I want everything to go smoothly. I love saying, “Technology is great… when it works.” My top 5 on StrengthsFinder are Maximizer, Strategic, Relator, Harmony, and Adaptability. I grew up in Bloomington as the youngest of 3. I went to St. John’s University twice (2011-BA, Psychology; 2018-MA, Ministry) Nicole and I have been married since 2015. Connor was born in 2018 and Emma in 2021. We live in Richfield and feel so fortunate to call Colonial Church “home.” I love the ritual of making coffee every morning. I brew my own beer. I enjoy making BBQ and would probably eat it for every meal if I could. I love being outside--fly fishing, camping, or just sitting on our back patio. I’m also a huge MN Wild fan.
I work to connect people, both with each other and to what's happening around here. Come find me at our Connection Corner! I'd love to meet you and get you, well, connected!I'm a strong 6 on the Enneagram, which means I basically look at things from a worst-case scenario and then walk myself backward to safety. My top 5 StrengthsFinder are Empathy, Developer, Includer, Connectedness, and Responsibility. Lance and I married in Colorado in 1996. We live in Minneapolis with 2 kids: Jane (22), a Bethel graduate who sometimes helps with kids and youth, and Josh (18), a recent HS grad who basically could run the Connection Corner without me. We also have a dog (Biscuit) and a cat (Mao Mao). I love walking with friends, road trips with my family, meeting people for coffee, reading, and hanging out with my puppy! I also love anything social justice and working towards bettering life for all people and animals.
Building Coordinator & Administrative Assistant
I manage all of the room requests and needs for Colonial programming & meetings, and all outside groups that utilize our beautiful facility.I grew up in Bloomington and currently reside in Eden Prairie with my husband Dave. We have been married for almost 15 years and have an adorable fur-baby, Bogart. I am an avid fan of “almost all sports,” especially the Minnesota Gophers and Minnesota Twins! Between spending time with friends, attending sporting events, and long walks with our dog, I also enjoy an occasional Hallmark movie and long afternoon nap!
Pastoral Care Associate
I help the staff and congregation. My passion is people: who, what, why, where, and how. I love getting to know about people and their journeys.I am a 2 on the Enneagram, which means I am a helper. I love reading a good book, conversations over coffee or a meal. I love live performances, musical theatre, and concerts, and I get excited just thinking about the State Fair.
I am passionate about music, and I love working with the Chorale and the Chamber Singers here at Colonial. I also play clarinet in the Minneapolis Police Band and the Westwood Synod Senior Band.I graduated from South High School in Minneapolis and didn't go to college, but worked for the City of Minneapolis for 33 years, before retiring in 2009. I'm a 6 on the Enneagram, which means I am a "dedicated and responsible individual who is keen on belonging to a social group and finding their fit in the world." This description definitely fits me! My husband Hans and I have been married for 40 years. We have one son, Kris, who is currently an Apache helicopter pilot in the U.S. Army. I love traveling, photography, reading, history, lighthouses, and covered bridges (the bridge here at Colonial is what initially attracted me to the church as I first saw it from Highway 62 in 1988!)
I’m passionate about serving people and lending a listening ear to those who need it, helping solve problems, and offering hugs (when it’s allowed!).I attended Golden Valley Lutheran College and received an A.A. degree in Liberal Arts. I graduated a decade later from Augsburg College, Cum Laude, with a B..A. in Business Administration and Economics. My top 5 StrengthsFinder strengths are Achiever, Adaptability, Includer, Woo, and Connectedness. I have two daughters, Tova and Leah, two granddaughters (Kayden and Lillie), and one grandson, Paul. My daughters are wonderful, but nothing compares to three delightful grandchildren! I love music of all kinds, traveling, cooking, vanilla ice cream, Martin Luther, Diet Coke, mystery movies, and oh so many other things. I’d love to hear about the things you love most, so let’s get together sometime soon!
I’m part time and work with the Missions Resource Team (MRT) to refine how we support our mission partners through ongoing communication, volunteer events, prayer, and allocating mission funds in alignment with our Core Values. I work with church staff on mission related activities and opportunities to engage our church community in missional work. Missions is a long-time passion of mine and I’m grateful to work with our church community in this capacity.
I’ve lived in the Twin Cities all but five years of my life which was in Lincoln, NE, soon after I was married. My husband, Rick, and I have two wonderful sons and daughters-in-law’s, and five darling and adventurous grandchildren (ages 3 - 8). We have lots of fun and laughter with the grandkids, particularly during an occasional overnight visit.
I retired in 2019 from a 33-year career in Human Resources and have more time to be with family and friends, learn about gardening (what works/what doesn’t), play/walk with our energetic two-year-old goldendoodle, watch a good romantic comedy, visit my happy places; the ocean and/or the mountains, and most recently reengage in snow skiing after 35 years.
Hi, I’m Bob! I am passionate about sharing my talents, struggles, and growth to help others who are in need and create a clean, comfortable space for the holy work of our congregation.I have a BS in Business Admin, which comes in handy with my business, Organic Bob LLC. I’m also a certified Permaculture Designer (Regenerative Agriculture). I have a certification as a Master Water Steward, and training in soil microbiology. My Enneagram is an 8--the Challenger-- which teams well with my Strengthfinders profile of Strategic, Learner, Empathy, Intellection, and Woo. I have a 22-year-old daughter, Isabel. My partner, Cara, is a Program Coordinator for a STEAM school, and she shares my love for all things outdoors and nature. I enjoy using my gardening knowledge to create regenerative food systems that help people with health or food security issues while healing God’s Creation at the same time. Writing poetry to express pain, healing, and capturing beauty is something I love to do and share.
Paul John Rudoi
I direct the Chorale, our primary worship leading ensemble. Everyone has a voice, and I’m passionate about harnessing our voices, together, to find God in each other and our broader community.
I grew up in Florida, came to Minnesota from New England, and now live in West Saint Paul with my better half, Brittany–a professional soprano and voice instructor–and our two owners, Harley and Momo.
Outside of directing, singing, composing, and advocating for music in my community and the choral field at large, I love life-changing animated films (check out Tomm Moore’s Celtic Triptych!), building things out of wood scraps, and finding local holes-in-the-wall (our latest favorite: Tongue in Cheek in St. Paul)!