Tell Us About Your Family: I've been married to my wonderful ezer kenegdo, Leslie, for 30 years now. We have two sons in college (Cameron at ISU and Andy at UNI) and an Airedale Terrier named Ruby.
What Do You Do At WUMC?: As a pastor, I think I have the best job in the world --- creating opportunities for people to both receive themselves and share with others God's love found in following the way, the truth, and the life of Jesus.
What's your favorite restaurant? I dig the BBQ. Smokey D's if I'm up for a Sunday drive. Jethro's or Kue'd if I want to stay in the Kee.
What's on your iPod? You know, I don't download music. When I'm driving the metro, I always listen to Life 107.1 for the latest and greatest Christian contemporary songs, which I then beg our praise band to sing on Sunday. (Sometimes they throw me a bone!) If I want some background, then its George Winston piano solos.
What's On My Bookshelf?: Right now its Think...Act...Be(lieve) Like Jesus by Randy Frazee. Also Shift: Helping Congregations Back Into the Game of Effective Ministry, by Phil Maynard, and Walking with Nehemiah: Your Community Is Your Congregation, by Joseph Daniels, Jr. Oh, and over her shoulder, any novel my wife Leslie is reading.
What's your claim to fame? I own a U.S. Design Patent for a fish bat. Seriously.
What do you do in your free time? I enjoy working with Leslie on our family hobby, which is making fish bats! Also fishing, gardening, walking our dog, and rooting for the Hawkeyes, Cyclones, Panthers, Packers, Twins, and Cubbies!
Reach Pastor Jamie: Jamie@waukeechurch.org
Children and Youth Pastor
Tell us about your family:
I have been blessed with a great family. My wife, Debi, has put up with me for 25 years - she probably deserves an award for that!! She is the glue that holds our family together. When she is not taking care of me and our "kids", you will find her in the preschool room for North Polk Schools.
Our son, Cooper, is a graduate of Faith Baptist Bible College in Ankeny and is the 6th grade teacher at Ankeny Christian Academy. You will most likely see him playing guitar with the praise team on Sunday morning.
Rieley, our daughter, is attending Marshalltown Community College and is studying psychology - maybe even ending up as a school guidance counselor. She is also on scholarship for both volleyball and softball.
I would be in trouble if I did not mention the youngest member of the family - Stella - our 9 year old Pomeranian. Truth be told, she is actually Rieley's dog.
What do you do at WUMC?
Youth and Children's Pastor
What's your favorite restaurant?
We eat out too much, but it is usually because we are running to an activity or sporting event....so it is on the go. I do like Panda Express, Culver's and Pizza.
What's on your iPod?
I love music....all kinds of music. I have a broad range of styles on my ipod. My play list includes Stellar Kart, Toby Mac and Go Fish, I even have the Pitch Perfect and Lemonade Mouth soundtracks.
What's on your bookshelf?
I am not a huge reader, so most of the books on my shelf are reference materials for my ministry work. You will find several books about youth and children's ministry. There might even be a handful about worship and a couple on prayer. There is also a bunch of props that I have used for children's sermons or youth discussions.
What's your claim to fame?
My first college band was able to open for 1985 Star Search winner Limited Warranty - that really dates me, doesn't it.
What do you do in your free time?
A lot of my time is spent in a gym or at ball field. I used to coach a lot, but now I just get to be a dad. I love playing guitar and fishing. I am not very good at either but enjoy them both.
Reach Pastor Jeff: Jeff@waukeechurch.org
Coordinator of Discipleship Ministries
Tell Us About Your Family: I have two wonderful daughters, Mandi and Dana. Mandi is married to her high school sweetheart, Josh. Mandi and Josh are in the process of completing their PhD’s at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Dana completed her master’s degree last April at University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada and is working in Vancouver. I also have my needy, but loving, cat Diamond at home.
What do you do at WUMC?: I am the adult ministries coordinator, which means it is my joy to discover small group curriculum. I also promote membership in small groups in the church. There is an administrative side of my job which includes a lot of miscellaneous tasks like updating our Facebook page (like “Waukee United Methodist Church” on Facebook!) and keeping the outside banners current.
What's your favorite restaurant? We always seem to end up at Rock Bottom, and always enjoy it. For faster food, my top favorite is still Chipotle. After a play, we can often be found at Cheesecake Factory for dessert.
What's on your iPod?: I don’t really have an iPod, but I use Pandora a lot. My favorite stations on Pandora are all over the place from restful spa music (Gandalf) to Frank Sinatra and the Carpenters. I enjoy classical and smooth jazz as well.
A favorite podcast is called “Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History” which covers history in extreme detail. I save his podcasts for when I have a lot of traveling to do as they are a couple of hours long.
What's On My Bookshelf?: I try to have a mix of old and new. Jane Austen has a top spot on my bookshelf as does Tolkien and C.S. Lewis. I have a number of Adam Hamilton’s books from which I am always learning. For fun, I enjoy Nora Roberts, Georgette Heyer and historical fiction. I also try to read a few history books so my newest one is War of Two by John Sedgwick about Burr and Hamilton. Jeff Shaara has done a great job of following in his father’s footsteps while writing about the Civil War, WW I, and WW II.
What's your claim to fame? I came in second in my high school ping-pong tournament! I haven’t played much in recent years, so I don’t think that I could do the spins and slams that I did back then.
What do you do in your free time? I read, watch old time movies, and chat on the phone with friends. I also try to take a few trips to see my daughters!
Reach Deanne: Deanne@waukeechurch.org
Bob and Martha Ward
United Methodist Pastors Bob and Martha Ward will fill in for Pastor Jamie during his summer renewal leave and vacation. That means they’ll be our preachers and provide pastoral care as needed from July 9 through August 13. The Wards have worshiped and volunteered with us since their retirement from Ankeny First UMC in 2014. They came to our church not just because it’s near their home on the western edge of Urbandale, but also because they appreciate our involvement in mission and outreach and are excited about future ministry on our new property.
In addition to being periodic ushers, greeters and small group members, Bob and Martha serve on committees and volunteer with our mission projects. Bob has served on the Capital Campaign Committee, Facilities Committee and Trustees. Martha has been serving on the Finance Committee, helping with Trinity meals and volunteering weekly at Waukee Elementary.
Immediate family for Bob and Martha includes their son David (who lives in Denver, CO and works for the state as a budget analyst in the area of Health Care Policy and Finance) and Bob’s mother, who at age 101 lives at Bickford Cottage in Urbandale. The Wards enjoy the flexibility of retirement. Golf is Bob’s favorite leisure pastime, it’s reading and writing for Martha, and they both enjoy travel and a good hike on nature trails.
Bob and Martha like the size of the Des Moines metropolitan area because it offers lots of good restaurants, cultural attractions, recreation and volunteer opportunities. Bob is part of an environmental group called the “Interfaith Green Coalition” and serves on several UM Conference Committees, including Parish Development and Legislative Advocacy; Martha serves on the Board of Directors for both Bidwell-Riverside Center and Hawthorn Hill Ministries.
What is their “claim to fame”? The Wards say “each other”! Married in 1970, they attended seminary together at Pacific School of Religion (Berkeley, CA) in the late 1970’s after working in their first “real” jobs in Cedar Rapids – Bob as an attorney and Martha doing hospital social work. While at seminary, they experienced the synergy of doing ministry together. That means, what they could do together was much greater than what they could do as individuals. Returning to Iowa for ordination and pastoral appointment, they then co-pastored for the next thirty years in Waterloo, Knoxville and Ankeny. Besides preaching and worship, what they enjoy most about ministry is helping congregations and individuals grow in discipleship and experience the synergy that comes from working together as the Body of Christ.
Christian Education Coordinator,
Visitation and Membership Coordinator
Tell Us About Your Family: I have been married to my amazing husband Brad for just over ten years and we have two children, Sophia who is 9 and Collin who is 5. If you see two kiddos wandering around church talking to everyone there's a good chance you've met them. :-)
What Do You Do At WUMC?: This is supposed to be an easy question, right?! Officially I am the Christian Education Coordinator and the Visitation and New Member Coordinator. Those roles entail coordinating educational opportunities for the children of Waukee UMC, including Sunday School, Vacation Bible School, and other special events; finding and supporting teachers and volunteers for said opportunities; welcoming new visitors to our church and helping them get acquainted with us; and helping people in their journey of becoming members of Waukee UMC. Unofficially I like to tell people my job is to play with kids, talk to people, and encourage everyone to get involved wherever their gifts may lead them. If there's food involved you will probably find me nearby as well.
What's your favorite restaurant? Anywhere that has good coffee and rich desserts!
What's on your iPod? I don't have an iPod, but my most frequented Pandora stations are filled with Contemporary Christian, The Blenders, and KidzBop.
What's on your bookshelf? I love a good mystery!
What's your claim to fame? I have no clue....if you find out please be so kind as to share.
What do you do in your free time? I spend a lot of my free time volunteering and am especially partial to causes related to children. I also spend a lot of time playing games with my family, playing outside, and taking bike rides. I sneak in reading time whenever I can and almost always have a book with me in hard copy or digital format.
Reach LuCinda: LuCinda@waukeechurch.org
Tell Us About Your Family:
I'm married to my husband Travis and we have 3 children Braden 14, Andrew 9, and Brynn 5.
What Do You Do At WUMC?:
I am the music director leading our Chancel Choir, The Testaments, Treble on the Mount, and Bells.
What's your favorite restaurant?:
Anything local like Fresh Mediterranean Express, H's Pho, and if we're feeling really fancy we go to Baru 66 in Windsor Heights.
What's on your iPod?:
How do I answer this? I've got it all! Classical, folk, Americana, rock, children's music, old-style country like Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, Indie, world music. In the car I always listen to NPR and I especially love Studio 1 and Fresh Air with Terry Gross and on Saturdays it's always tuned to A Prairie Home Companion.
What's on your bookshelf?
Harry Potter, To Kill a Mockingbird, Little House on the Prairie, I could go on and on. Reading is probably my favorite pastime. I love books that have personal struggle and resilience. I'm not a light and breezy reader, I like the stories to mean something.
What's your claim to fame?
I have read all of the Newbery Honor books in order beginning with the first one written in 1922. I'm also known for some really great rhubarb coffee cake!
What do you do in your free time?
Read, cook and bake, spend time with friends and family over a good cup of tea or coffee, listen to live music, travel Iowa, be in the woods, yoga and walks.