My first career was for 25 years as an executive in the classical music recording business. Raised in the Lutheran church (ELCA) and now 25 years an Episcopalian,
it was that foundational love of music that initially brought me to the Anglican tradition.
My path to church consulting began with years of involvement at my parishes –always choirs, but then committees and vestries. Inspired and challenged by that experience, I trained at the Church Development Institute in the Episcopal Diocese of Milwaukee, and later served as a trainer. For the last 3 years I have worked with CDI colleagues to establish the program in the Diocese of Long Island.
For the Milwaukee Diocese, I have served on its Executive Council and, for 10 years, on the Commission on Mission and Development; for half of that time as its Convener. Our work is in providing financial aid, ministry grants, planning redevelopment projects and leadership training for parishes. It is here that I have come to develop a deep love and understanding for the “ecosystem” of the church in a larger geography; how challenges and expressions of parishes can be so similar and differing in closely related contexts.
From that experience and my work in church consulting I have come to believe that:
- Every congregation has a charism to express the Gospel in its location.
- A consultant must do the hard work of “presence ministry”, accepting the parish’s system and coaching it into what it could be.
- In every church a light needs to be shined on the things that make church life meaningful, and change must begin with what is healthy.
I reside in my hometown of Madison with Marit, my wife of 35 years. Along with my two grown children, my passions and pursuits are all things classical and church-musical, and reading of all kinds, but especially the exploits of literary sleuths. My spirit benefits greatly from the beautiful Wisconsin lakes and woods as well as my lifetime interest in its history.