Jeffrey C Olson-Lead Pastor
Jeffrey is a native of Roseville MN who early in his teen years experienced Christ’s presence and love during treatment for Leukemia and in that experience sensed a call into ministry to share with others the love and presence of Christ in that season. Jeff and Lisa met and fell in love in college and have been married for 10+ years and have three active boys, Jonas (7), August (5) and Elias (3).
Jeffrey earned his undergraduate degree in Philosophy and Religious Studies from Bethel University. He continued into seminary and attended classes at Gordon Conwell, North Park and finished his Masters in Divinity at Bethel University.
Jeffrey has had the pleasure of serving in 3 church ministries in the past 15 years. He has worked at a church plant, a Christian college and on pastoral staff at two Covenant Churches. All of these roles have had pioneering aspects to them where he has helped to create and develop teams, services and ministries and Jeffrey feels that all of these experiences had been preparing him for this exciting new call to plant a church back in the region he grew up in.
Together with Lisa he eagerly looks forward to this exciting opportunity to share the love of Christ with the city they know and love so well. Jeff enjoys creatively telling people about the message of hope in Christ and is particularly drawn to settings and people who may have never had a chance to hear and embody the good news before, or need to hear and see it in fresh new ways.
Lisa L Olson-Childrens Ministry Director
Lisa grew up right outside Boston Massachusetts. Raised in a Christian home with two older brothers she was heavily involved in sports and music and was open about her faith in a secular public school environment. Hungry for understanding God more and grow in community with others, Lisa attended Bethel and studied Philosophy and Art. Her involvement there in leadership as a resident assistant, worship teams, and collegiate sports grew in Lisa a heart for pouring into others in the areas of personal, spiritual and emotional development.
Lisa and Jeff married in 2003. While working as a Resident Director at Crown college, Lisa completed her masters degree in Ministry Leadership in 2007. Her passion to see college age students grasp their purpose and potential in all areas of their lives, really fueled Lisa’s desire for development and mentoring.
In the last season of ministry, Lisa has served as a Campus Staff Minister at the University of Rhode Island with Intervarsity Christian fellowship. A campus of 15,000 students, Lisa was charged with the leadership, recruiting and equipping of students around the mission to establish and advance witnessing communities of students and faculty that grow in a love for God, His Word, and His World.
Most recently, Lisa has been investing her time and energy in being mom to her three boys; Jonas, August and Elias.
Algernon Lewis-Pastoral Intern
Nurtured in the village of Swetes in Antigua in the Caribbean. He is the 12th child of Rufus and Hildred Lewis.
Algernon first encounter Jesus personally in 1987. Later, he followed the call of God into fulltime, pastoral ministry for pastoral formation and enrolled in the United Theological College of the West Indies and the University of the West Indies in 1991, to pursue a Diploma in Ministerial Formation and a Bachelor of Arts (Theology) respectively. In 1995 he was ordained to word and sacrament in the Moravian Church Eastern West Indies Province.
Pastoral ministry has led him to serve the people of God in three (3) Caribbean islands.
Algernon has been married to Rev. Denise Smith-Lewis since 1997 and the couple has two sons.
Currently, Algie is pursuing an MA at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota in Congregational Mission and Leadership, an area of study that is geared towards discerning God’s mission in the world and how the 21st century church can accurately engage that mission. This field of study also prepares the candidate to lead such missional undertakings.
Algernon Lewis has a passion for the things of God and for people in general.
Justin Wells-Director of Worship Arts
Justin grew up in Brookfield, Wisconsin and loyally cheers for the Packers. He was raised in a Christian family, in a full home with four siblings and many pets.
Justin attended University of Minnesota from 2011, double majoring in music and computer science. Through his involvement in an on-campus ministry, God entered in and revealed the beauty and reality of the gospel. Justin then had the opportunity to lead worship for two years with the college ministry. Through this, he realized his love for God, music, a variety of instruments, and he majorly geeks out about music theory.
After graduating in 2015, Justin’s desire to utilize his gift in music to glorify our Lord and creator fueled a desire to lead worship. He served leading worship with Hope Community church for two years. During that time, he also lead worship at a church plant of 20 people called Gospel Church. After serving in these churches and while looking for a new church home, Justin visited Catalyst. In a mutual answer to prayer, he joined Catalyst as a worship leader.
Justin has a heart for people to understand Christ’s love for them and to see people move nearer to the freedom of the cross. Written all throughout scripture are songs and music inspired by God, and songs used as a way to communicate with God. Songs can voice a heart’s cry so honestly before the Lord, and retell a promise over and over. If you know any witty puns, casually throw them his way. The more puns, the better the day.
Sullivan Keehr-Director of Communications
Sullivan grew up on a 12-acre sheep farm just outside Little Falls MN, working most summers working on his grandparents’ farm half a mile down the road.
He grew up at one of the local ELCA churches, gaining and growing in faith as far back as he can remember. He also attended a youth group at the local Assemblies of God in high school. At a youth conference with that youth group his senior year, he heard his call to ministry, which led him to Bethel University to double-major in Youth Ministry and Biblical & Theological Studies.
Sullivan is currently pursuing his M. Div. at Bethel Seminary through their SemPM program, works mornings at Menards, and drifts from one odd task to another in his freetime.
Advisory leadership team
These wonderful people (from left to right: Jack, Jeff, Ginny, Charles, Peter, Kati) make up our Advisory Leadership Team. These leaders have a passion for Christ, people and for seeing our church continue to thrive. This volunteer group meets monthly to pray, discern, talk big picture items and help us as a community continue to fulfill our mission.