Ellen grew up in Buffalo, and her family lives on Beebe Lake in St. Michael. Ellen currently lives in Decorah, Iowa, where she studies English and secondary education at Luther College. She is the oldest of four siblings, including a sister, Lexi, and two brothers, Trevor and Spencer. She also has a large extended family of lifelong Zion members including her grandmother and many uncles, aunts, and cousins.
We take up three pews at the 10:30 service.
Her earliest memories of Zion include attending Vacation Bible School and Sunday school with her cousin, Maria.
To Ellen, helping people experience the joy of life in Christ by Living God’s Call means believing, listening, and serving.
It’s about acknowledging God’s sacrifice for us, the death and resurrection of His son, and how this felt grace unfolds in our daily life.
The most inspirational people in my faith journey have been those who have demonstrated a visible dedication to Christ and possess a desire to serve.
Opportunities for kids and teens in ministry has always been one of the things Ellen has loved about Zion, and she felt her own call to ministry as a high school student, as part of the T.I.M. Team, leading Friday Night Fun Nights for middle school students.
At the first Fun Night I met a boy, James, and I played soccer with him. I just felt like meeting him was God’s way of telling me I was doing something right and significant.
Ellen’s experience working at Camp Wapo last summer led her to apply for Zion’s summer internship this year.
I couldn’t say goodbye to kids week after week like I did last year at camp. I desired stability, and I wanted to be part of the follow-through. I also wanted to see the behind-the-scenes, especially with Pastor Suzi’s transition to Pastor of Youth and Family Ministries. I’m most looking forward to new programs (that I’ve never been involved with), and I am excited to witness to others and myself, strengthening faith.
Her favorite Bible passages are Isaiah 64:8, 2 Corinthians 4, and the book of Ephesians, and her favorite Bible story is Jesus Calms the Storm.
Jesus takes the disciples as they are to His way; I see the boat as symbolism for going towards another way of thinking, a more faith-filled mentality. The disciples are still incredulous and in awe of Jesus’ power even though they should know who he is. They freak out from the storm; Jesus sleeps. I have yet to sleep in life’s storms.
Her favorite hymn is “It is Well.”
One time it really wasn’t. This song was a wake-up call.
She also enjoys a variety of contemporary Christian music on Spotify.
Check out my Spotify playlist. One song in particular that I like is “Wasteland.” The song reads “There is a crack in the door filled with light. And that’s all I need”; the song stands as a reminder that our hope in God is all we need even if it doesn’t feel like enough.
A line from another song, “Multiplied,” by Needtobreath, became her motto last summer:
Your love is like radiant diamonds
Bursting inside us we cannot contain
It will start this summer and it’ll go where it will.