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Pastor Matt Cordes

Hello people of Hope,

My name is Pastor Matt and I am grateful for the opportunity to join the Hope community. I love Jesus, my family, spending time in God’s beautiful creation and having faith-filled conversations. I grew up in small town Minnesota and have spent seasons of life as a youth minister, working construction, a basketball coach, a teacher, doing campus ministry, and as an Ordained Minister.

I love being a Pastor and I am excited to do ministry with the people of Hope. It is a privilege to get to proclaim the Good News and to be invited into the sacred spaces of people’s lives. I truly enjoy sharing the story of God’s love as well as hearing the stories of God’s people. The Church has a truly unique niche in the world to create something every human longs for, community. My sense is that Hope excels at creating community and I’m looking forward to being a part of it.

In my spare time I love the outdoors, fishing, hunting and recently have become an obsessed Muskie fisherman. I also enjoy reading, movies and love the game of basketball. I have three beautiful adult daughters, Madeline 26, Annie 23, Lilly 21 and have one sweet little nugget of a granddaughter named Lola who has stolen my heart. I am looking forward to doing life with you wonderful folks.


Wendy Hjelmberg, Director of Family Ministries

Wendy began working at Hope in 2000 as the youth director. In 2007, she completed her Associate in Ministry degree, specializing in youth and families, and accepted a call to Hope Lutheran as our Director of Family Ministries. Wendy has an infectious energy and is not afraid to tackle anything, including many things at one time. She has a great rapport with youth and parents, and is involved with the community, giving leadership to many programs addressing teen and family issues.

Sara Nichols, Assistant Youth Minister

Sara began working in youth ministry in 2011, and joined the team at Hope in 2020.  She has a bachelor's degree in Youth and Christian Ministries and a Certificate in Youth Ministry.  Some of her favorite parts of ministry include anything involving music, being a part of life’s laughter, walking alongside others through the messy and broken parts of life, and just being able to listen to the stories of young people.  In her free time Sara spends much of her time outdoors adventuring with her husband and their golden retriever, Olaf.  From hiking and biking, to climbing to skiing, they always up for an adventure together.

Stephanie Rhodes, Secretary

Stephanie is the glue to the team at Hope Lutheran.  She works in many areas helping things run smoothly, look beautiful, and adds color to all areas of her work.  She has two energetic boys who love to help out whenever they can.


Lee Mogen, Organist

Since 1981, Lee has provided wonderful organ and piano music for church services every Sunday, as well as for special services such as funerals and weddings. She also schedules special music for the church, enhancing the music ministry of Hope.


Sylvia Ketchum, Building Manager

Sylvia has been on the staff of Hope since 1996. She takes care of all parts of our building from roof to basement. Her responsibilities also include scheduling and set-up for all building use, including weddings, events and use of the building by outside agencies in the community and surrounding area. Sylvia will tackle any care and maintenance job that comes her way.