I coordinate Pastoral Care and Senior activities for the congregation. At Colonial we try to take serious the care for our members in all seasons of life. Away from the job I love a round of golf, talking Minnesota sports, or spending time with friends with a large bucket of popcorn at the theatre. Let me know if I can help you get acquainted with our congregation.
EducationI grew up in Minneapolis, received an AA in Law Enforcement from Normandale Community College and a B.A. degree from Bethel University. God called me back to Bethel Seminary where I received a Master of Divinity degree. I served in a variety of ministries here at Colonial Church from Youth Ministry to Missions and now Pastoral Care.
Sara Wilhelm Garbers
Acting Senior Associate Minister
I am excited to be intentional in fostering ways for connection to take place in the community. What exactly this will look like is something we will co-create together...so please feel free to reach out to me if you have ideas and hope/dreams for what God might be inviting us in the midst of community.I was born and raised in Minnesota, but have also lived in other places around the country. After completing my doctoral coursework, my spouse and I decided to move back to MN and we now own a lovely home in St. Louis Park! I am passionate about matters of faith and justice, particularly focused on gender justice and issues of domestic & sexual violence. In addition to my work at the church, I serve the city of St. Louis Park as a human rights commissioner, my school as a sexual assault advocate, and am completing my doctorate in ethics at Loyola University Chicago. The rest of my time is richly filled by wonderful relationships with dear friends and family, decorating and cleaning, running, hiking, and basically doing anything that involves spending time with my favorite human (and spouse!), Andy.
Sara received her Bachelor of Arts in Communications and Women's Studies from the University of Minnesota Duluth. She then completed a Master of Divinity from Bethel Seminary (MN). She is currently a doctoral candidate at Loyola University Chicago. Her dissertation is entitled "Dangerous Memories": Sexual Violence and Trauma- Towards a Feminist Political Theological Ethics of Memory.
Minister of Children & Families
At Colonial, I am privileged to spend time with children, infants through 5th grade. I am blessed to work together with families as we share faith with our children. I love Jesus and I love kids! I am a Minnesotan living in St.Paul with my husband (Paul), and two children (Rhoda and Ricky).
Marie received a B.S. in Biblical and Theological Studies from Bethel University in 2003. She graduated from Northern Baptist Theological Seminary with an M. Div. in 2006. She has served in full time ministry in the areas of youth and children at three churches, Christ Community Church in Wheaton, IL; St. Mary Magdalene Lutheran in Savage, MN; and now at Colonial.
Christian Collins Winn
Interim Teaching Minister
Dr. Christian T. Collins Winn is deeply passionate about helping others understand the gospel as it forms them into justice-seeking and mercy-loving people who walk in the world with humility. He completed a PhD in Theological and Religious Studies at Drew University and was Professor of Historical and Systematic Theology at Bethel University from 2005-2018. He has a decorated academic record, and his research interests include the history of Pietism, ecumenism, theology of Karl Barth, political theology, problematics of race, comparative theology, inter-faith dialogue, historiography of evangelicalism, and the theological significance of the Black Radical Tradition. Alongside these interests, he loves watching movies, listening to jazz and blues, and following college and professional basketball. (Especially his childhood team the UNC Tarheels.) He's happily married to Julie and has two wonderful sons, Jonah and Elijah.
Ministry Operations Manager
I work alongside the wonderful staff of Colonial to run the day-to-day operations of our ministry areas. I graduated from Bethel University with a degree in math education. I live in Cologne, Minnesota with my husband Stephen and my son Callen. Spending time with my family while riding our bikes, camping or finding a new park are somethings I enjoy the most. I also like to cook in my new kitchen, read, garden and find the best fishing location on any Minnesota lake. I feel extremely blessed to be in my position here at Colonial and find it very rewarding to see how the people of this church are navigating what it means to be the hands and feet of Jesus in such beautiful (and creative) ways.
Youth Ministry Associate
I direct the middle school program at Colonial. I spent 3 summers working at Lake Wapogasset Lutheran Bible Camp and 1 summer interning at TreeHouse Eagan, both working with middle school and high school students. Every summer I was blown away by young people's capacity for spiritual formation and development, so I'm passionate about fostering growth and encouraging leadership in students! I'm so excited to have the chance to form long-term relationships with students at Colonial. I recently graduated from Bethel University with a degree in Relational Communication Studies and a minor in English Literature, so I love people and books! I like to read anything by Jane Austen, play guitar, drink coffee, travel, hike, and ski. I'm originally from Blaine, Minnesota, but am currently living in St. Paul and loving it.
I work with the Colonial team to foster better communication within the community and to our neighbors next door. I'm a Bethel grad, but mostly I locate myself in my loves: wife Kasey, daughter Adalyn, good friends, good coffee, good books, and... mixed experiences with Minnesota sports teams! I'm grateful to join such a rich heritage at Colonial, even as we look forward to where God is inviting us next.
I am very excited to be working as Assistant to Mark Stover, Minister of Worship, Music & Arts, here at Colonial Church. I have been a member of Colonial since the early 1990’s and have been a member of the Colonial Chorale since 1999. My job duties include working with the Colonial Chorale, Chamber Singers and other special events pertaining to Worship, Music & Arts.
My husband and I have one son who is currently serving in the United States Army. My hobbies include travel and photography. I also play clarinet in a community band in the Twin Cities area.
I support the Associate Minister as well as the Pastoral Care Ministry Team and Adult Education efforts. I love this work, as it allows me to connect with people here at Colonial Church as we all seek to live God’s grace while we minister to our own family and learn what it means to be a neighbor in our world. In addition to my work here, I also enjoy part-time work with Tastefully Simple as well as dabbling in video legacy production. I have two daughters, Tova and Leah (plus two great sons-in-law); and two granddaughters, Kayden and Lillian, who keep me busy and happy.
Pastoral Care Associate
Tony Jones, M.Div., Ph.D., is the author of a dozen books including Did God Kill Jesus?, The Sacred Way: Spiritual Practices for Everyday Life, and Postmodern Youth Ministry: Exploring Cultural Shift, Cultivating Community, Creating Holistic Connections. Tony is a sought after speaker and consultant in the areas of emerging church, postmodernism, and Christian spirituality. He is married, has three children and lives in Edina, MN.
Dr. Allyss Haecker currently serves as the director of the Riverside Singers at Augsburg University and the Colonial Chorale at Colonial Church in Edina, MN. Dr. Haecker has recently joined the music faculty at the Shattuck-St. Mary’s School as a voice teacher within their Vocal Performance Program. She is also the director of Amina, the select choir for young women within the Northfield Youth Choir program. She is delighted to be the Interim Artistic Director of the See Change Treble Choir in St. Paul, MN. Formerly, she was on the voice faculty at St. Olaf College and was the conductor of one of the college’s choirs, Cantorei. Dr. Haecker served as an Associate Professor of Music and the Director of Choral and Vocal Studies at Emory & Henry College (VA) where she taught voice, conducting, choral methods, vocal pedagogy, diction, and directed the Concert and Chamber Choirs. Dr. Haecker has also served as the Director of Vocal and Choral Studies at Newberry College (SC) and the National Music Conservatory in Amman, Jordan. For sixteen years, she served on the vocal and conducting faculty of the Performing Arts Institute, a summer festival for students of music, dance, and theater. Previously, she taught choral music in the Fenton Area Public Schools (MI) and was the Artistic Director of the Saginaw Youth Chorale (MI). Dr. Haecker received her doctor of musical arts in choral conducting and literature from the University of Iowa, her master of music degree in choral conducting from the University of Illinois, and her bachelor of music education degree from Converse College (SC). She is a frequent clinician and guest conductor for district, state, and regional choral festivals. Dr. Haecker lives in Northfield, Minnesota with her husband, Arthur, and their son, Kai.
EducationDr. Haecker’s ongoing research includes contemporary South African choral music and its impact on social and political change. She was a recipient of the T. Anne Cleary International Research Fellowship which allowed her to study and perform throughout South Africa. Most recently, Dr. Haecker presented her research at the 2018 Annual African Conference. Her time in the Middle East has also led to research and performances of unpublished Arab choral music. She has twice presented at the Virginia Music Educators Association Annual Conference on topics of vocal pedagogy and courageous music-making. Dr. Haecker is an active soprano soloist having performed Mozart’s Requiem and Coronation Mass, Handel’s Messiah and Israel in Egypt, Bach’s Magnificat and St. Matthew Passion, Mahler’s Second Symphony, Mendelssohn’s Hor mein Bitten, Britten’s Rejoice in the Lamb, Charpentier’s Te Deum, Faure’s Requiem, Haydn's Creation and Missa brevis Joannis de Deo, and Jayce Ogren’s Evening Music. Dr. Haecker's operatic and musical theater performances include Montreverdi's L'Incoronazione di Poppea, Verdi's La Forza del Destino and La Traviata, Humperdinck's Hansel and Gretel, Bizet's Carmen, Mozart's Cosi fan Tutte, Puccini's Madama Butterfly, Offenbach's Les contes d'Hoffman, Delibes' Lakme, Sondheim's Into the Woods, and Miranda’s In The Heights. She is also a professor singer with the Minnesota Chorale and the See Change Treble Choir.
Farm raised and number 6 of 7 children I learned early on about hard work and service to community. I’ve been a attending Colonial for 20+ years and an active member since I went on a mission trip 12 years ago to the Dominican Republic. My daughter Isabel was baptized here and is now in Confirmation. In my spare time I operate an organic lawn and landscape company called Organic Bob.