Empowered by the Holy Spirit, our mission is to INVITE all people to become disciples of Jesus Christ, NURTURE each other's faith, and GO into the world to live for God.
We would like to introduce you to our staff. Bethlehem depends on its ordained and lay staff members as well as its many, many volunteers to carry out our Vision for Mission here at Bethlehem Lutheran Church. We are indeed fortunate to have such a dedicated and qualified staff.
Pastor Mark Larson, our Senior Pastor works closely with the program staff in addition to his pastoral responsibilities. In case you haven't looked yet you can click here to "Meet our Pastor," or if you want a full biography use this link to Pastor Mark.
Director of Church Operations
Donna has been on staff with Bethlehem since 1999. She was appointed Director of Church Operations in July of 2000. Donna grew up in Geneva, Illinois, and graduated from Geneva Community High School. She received her Bachelor's Degree in Accounting from Southern Illinois University.
Professionally, Donna’s prior experience includes 3 years as an Auditor at a large public accounting firm in Chicago, Illinois, 8 years as the Business Manager and Finance Director at a not-for-profit association and foundation in Schaumburg and Chantilly, Virginia, and 2 years as an Administrator of a law firm in Chicago, Illinois.
As a stay-at-home mom, Donna was active in school activities at Lincoln, Haines and St. Charles High School. She also was a member of the Board of Directors of Community Contacts for 14 years and the Association for Individual Development for 3 years. She was President of her Homeowner’s Association.
Donna lives in St. Charles with her husband Craig. They have two children, Jonathan, a graduate student at Northern Illinois University, and Ingrid, a 3rd year student at Illinois Wesleyan University. Donna enjoys reading and knitting in her spare time.
Director of Community Ministries
Kelly has been a staff member at Bethlehem since 2004 as Director of Care and Connection. She earned bachelor degrees in both Social Work and Urban Affairs and a Masters degree in Social Work from St. Louis University. For over 20 years, Kelly has worked professionally with adults, children and families in a variety of settings, helping others navigate through challenging life transitions and personal struggles.
Using her professional skills, experience and faith, Kelly provides leadership to our many caring and connection ministries. She is passionate about helping others feel welcome, accepted and encouraged in experiencing genuine community here at Bethlehem; a community of nurturing relationships, opportunities to serve, and support in learning and growing. Newcomers and long-time disciples alike are thankful Kelly is here to help us along in our faith journey.
Kelly has been part of the Bethlehem family for 14 years. She lives with her husband and two sons in St. Charles.
Director of Music
Sylvia has served Bethlehem as organist and director of adult and children’s choirs since 1979. She became the full-time Director of Music in 1985 and works with a staff of eight musicians who are in music leadership roles.
Sylvia is from eastern Pennsylvania, received the Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education at Lebanon Valley College and has taken graduate courses in music at the American Conservatory of Music/Chicago and Concordia University/River Forest. She has studied organ with Barbara Hartenbauer, R. Porter Campbell and Herbert Goetsch, and conducting with Pierce Getz, James Thurmond, Paul Christiansen and Richard Hoffland. Numerous workshops under Helen Kemp have greatly influenced her work with children’s choirs.
Sylvia and her husband James currently reside in St. Charles.
Praise Service Director
Director of Bethlehem Preschool Center
Pong graduated from Northern Illinois University with a Bachelor’s degree in Child Development. She has been working in the early childhood field since 1994. Pong has been employed at Bethlehem since September of 1996. She lives in St. Charles, Illinois, with her husband Tom, and 2 children, Ally and Lexy. Pong enjoys reading, drawing, traveling, skiing and playing volleyball and badminton.
Director of Youth Ministry
Aaron has been at Bethlehem since October of 2010. He is a 2007 graduate of the University of Northern Iowa where he received a Bachelor’s degree in Humanities, and was born and raised in Muscatine, Iowa. Aaron has been involved in youth and young adult ministry in some capacity for the past many years, having worked in two previous full-time youth positions in Illinois and Iowa. Falling into ministry as a young adult in college, Aaron has a great passion for campus ministry and introducing youth to ministry beyond high school through these settings. He has frequently been involved in mission work to Guatemala, and has a passion for service and mission work. Aaron hopes to instill this kind of relational and service driven ministry amongst youth and young adults at Bethlehem. He also likes football, hockey, kayaking, traveling, and going on adventures.
As the youngest of seven children, Patty was born and raised near Midland, Michigan. She attended the Merrill Public Schools and received her Bachelor’s Degree in Telecommunication from Michigan State University in 1986. In June of 1998 she married Stan Snyder, who is a Director of Sales for Interstate Brands Corporation. The Snyders moved to the Fox Valley area from Stow, Ohio, in the fall of 2004. They enjoy their current residence in South Elgin. Patty also has a daughter, Candace, in Perrysburg, Ohio and a son, Jared, living in Texas. In her spare time Patty enjoys reading and keeping in contact with family and friends.
Michelle has been an active member of Bethlehem since 1986 and the director of Sounds of Joy Handbells since 2001. She is very involved with Bethlehem and has been the chair of the Worship Music and Fine Arts committee, served on the Preschool committee and participated in Sanctuary Enhancement.
Michelle grew up the youngest of 4 children in Erie, Pennsylvania. She married her husband Don in 1980 and moved to St. Charles in 1985. Her daughter Kristen lives and teaches in Chicago and her son Don attends Eastern Illinois University.
In her spare time, Michelle enjoys playing the piano, singing in the choir, going on long walks with her husband, golfing and learning to kayak.
Director of Maintenance