Tom Schwolert began at Gloria Dei on March 31, 2020. Tom is passionate about sharing God’s love and believes the church needs to be accepting of ALL. He has served churches in Minnesota and Texas and spent three years as a trainer and coach for churches. Tom has been married to Melanie for 31 years and they have 3 children. Jazzy is married to Jack and lives in Ft. Myers, FL with their baby Noah and Zoey just graduated from the University of Arkansas. Tom and Melanie’s son Max unexpectedly passed away in 2012 from complications after getting the flu. The family has a non-profit called Love to the Max that gives away $5000 scholarships in his honor. Tom loves to golf, fish, play guitar, sing and spend time with family. Don’t hesitate to reach out to Pastor Tom to chat, have lunch, or a cup of coffee. He can also be contacted on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Intern JJ Godwin
Living in Fort Worth, Texas, JJ is a genderqueer individual (pronouns: they/them), attending Luther Seminary and in their final year of M.Div. coursework with an internship. JJ is seeking ordination in the ELCA word and service roster and walking in formation with the Deaconess Community of the ELCA. JJ is called to board certified mental health chaplaincy in the Northern Texas-Northern Louisiana Synod of the ELCA, and currently leads the mental health ministry work of the Public Witness team for peace and justice at the NTNL Synod. JJ is also a peer support specialist on DBSAlliance.org and on HeyPeers.com where JJ will be spending part of their internship year developing a new space for ministry leaders to discuss in peer support groups challenges with their own mental health while empowering leaders to learn new mental health awareness skills and feel more supported as front line responders during this pandemic and beyond. JJ is excited to be called by Gloria Dei Lutheran Church as their diaconal intern through May 2022 and is currently completing their fourth and final unit of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) at Terrell State Hospital.
JJ lives with their spouse Michelle who has a virtual professional counseling practice, along with their dog Radar, who aspires to be a therapy dog and their cat, Summitt, who enjoys avoiding Radar, the dog. JJ rides their bike to their day job as a peer support specialist for MHMR Tarrant County and enjoys riding bikes with Michelle at local Texas State Parks, while Radar hangs out on JJ, in his backpack. Michelle and JJ recently chose to downsize to one Blue Nissan Frontier 4X4 named Buckbeak and they all hope to learn how to do some mudding in the future. If you would like to connect with JJ, use @heypeersjj on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dei-Light Celebration Worship Band
Our musicians are a fun group of great musicians who share their gifts of singing and playing to enhance our worship service each week. The band welcomes others to join through an audition process. If you are interested, please contact Linda Gonzalez or Laura Welker.
- Josh Bradford – Keyboards/Vocals
- Allison Burns – Cantor/Vocals
- Darlene Canales – Vocals
- Julian Gonzalez – Vocals/Guitar/Bass/Drums
- Ryder Johnson – Drums
- Dave Welker – Guitar/Vocals
- Laura Welker (not pictured) – Vocals
- Carren Hastings (not pictured) – Flute
- Laura Koerper (not pictured) – Clarinet
- Terry Reininger (not pictured) – Clarinet
Our choir is directed by Laura Welker. Laura always welcomes new voices to the choir. All levels of singing ability are welcome. Contact Laura if you are interested.
Financial Secretary – Debbie Webb