Pastor Erin Coleman Branchaud (she/her/hers) has served as the pastor of St. Luke's since 2018. Pastor Erin is a graduate of the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, where she focused on faith-based community organizing as a transformational methodology for mission and discipleship. Erin brings to St. Luke's a deep sense of call to work with God for transformative economic, racial, and gender justice. She loves to tell stories and sing songs.
Before moving to Chicago in 2014, Pastor Erin worked as a Young Adults in Global Mission volunteer in Grand Bourg, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Prior to that she lived in Nebraska, where she served in congregations, outdoor ministries, and campus ministries.
Outside of church, you can find Pastor Erin playing piano, spending time with her spouse Josh, and being a human to her two cats.
Carmen Kingsley (she/her/hers) is delighted to serve in a congregation that fosters creativity, spirituality and community and a deep concern for its children. She brings with her a love and talent for the physicality of being a person of faith coupled with a sense of humor which has been cultivated through her training as a circus artist. Youth work and informal education has always inspired Carmen. She is excited about children's ministry because children bring so much life and energy to St Luke's.
Raised in a small, close-knit Mennonite congregation in Elkhart, Indiana, Carmen has always been encouraged to care for the global church and peace and justice. Her concern for those things has taken her to Colombia, Georgia (US), France, Argentina, and sweet home Chicago. Carmen attended seminary in Buenos Aires, Argentina which is also where her love for circus arts bloomed. Her master's thesis even examined dance in the Hebrew (Old) Testament. Ask Carmen about what languages she speaks or how often her computer changes languages on her in the middle of typing. Or if you'd rather, ask her about what you need to know about handstands.
Outside of work, you can find Carmen attending live theater events, writing cards (when she has time) and listening to podcasts like On Being, and recently Finding Fred.
Bev Jedynak has been the primary musician at St. Luke's since 2012, and was named "Cantor" in 2016. She was previously minister of music at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church of Chicago and before that spent 21 years as Cantor at Park View Lutheran Church – her home congregation.
The role of cantor is one well-suited to Bev – as “leader of the church’s song” she seeks to include everyone in the music making – whether the smallest toddler just starting to demonstrate rhythmic skills or the most advanced musician – all are welcome and invited to be a part of the church’s song.
In addition to staff duties at St. Luke’s Bev recently formed her own public relations/investor relations firm, Bevlyn Consulting, following decades of executive positions (the most recent being president) at a Chicago-based national PR/IR firm that recently dissolved.
Claire Schoepp (she/her/hers) was consecrated as a Lutheran Deaconess in 2010 through the Lutheran Deaconess Association. As a Deaconess, Claire feels it is her vocation to lift up the call of all the baptized to service as their gifts allow.
At St. Luke's, Claire uses her gift of organization in the role of Administrative Assistant in order to further the mission and ministry of St. Luke's. She sees her job as one that at its core is about enabling all those who use our space to do their best service.
When not at work, Claire can be found reading, exploring coffee shops with friends, and attending theatre with her spouse, Isaac.
Elle Dowd (she/her/hers) is a bi-furious seminarian at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago and a candidate for ordained ministry in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Elle has pieces of her heart in Sierra Leone, where her two children were born, and in St. Louis where she learned from the radical, queer, Black leadership during the Ferguson Uprising. She was formerly a co-conspirator with the movement to #decolonizeLutheranism and currently works as a community organizer with the Faith and Justice Collective and SOUL, writes regularly for the Disrupt Worship Project, and facilitates workshops on gender and sexuality and the Church in both secular conferences and Christian spaces. Elle has interests in queer and feminist Biblical interpretation and liberation and body theology. Elle loves spending time with the people she loves and on weekends, Elle tours the city of Chicago in search of the best brunch.
Elle's Twitter and Instagram handles are @HowNowBrownDowd and her public facebook page is Facebook.com/ElleDowdMinistry
Lora Salley (she/her/hers) is a social worker turned seminarian in the Master of Arts in Ministry program at the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago. After many years of being a social worker with children and families, her interests changed to hospital chaplaincy and accompanying people as they or their loved ones are approaching the end of life. Lora hopes to be able to have conversations with you about life, death, and the things that matter most to you and your loved ones.
Lora is also a chaplain resident at Lutheran General Hospital. When not working, Lora enjoys walking outside, preferably by the lake or near mountains. You may also find her at a local coffee shop with a book. She has been a member at St. Luke's for some time and is grateful to serve in a new role as a diaconal intern.
SERVICES / OFFICE
St. Luke's Lutheran Church of Logan Square
2837 W. Armitage Ave. • Chicago, IL 60647
Parking is free and plentiful on the streets immediately surrounding St. Luke’s. Look for parking along Armitage Ave, between California Ave and Humboldt Blvd; on Mozart St, just north of Armitage; or on Francisco Ave, just south of Armitage.
MAIL / DELIVERIES
Please direct all letters, packages, and deliveries to this address:
St. Luke's Lutheran Church of Logan Square
2020 N California Ave
Suite 7 • Box 191
Chicago IL 60647