Our Church Council 2020
1. Iris Schweiger
I am Iris Schweiger and at the moment I serve as President of the Martin Luther Church. My passion is inspiring people to live in and work with the love of Christ. I am always seeking to establish new ways to open the church doors to help neighbours, friends and congregation members find their programming needs. In 2017 I completed a lay preacher training program at the EKD in Germany and have been leading worship on occasional Sundays in English and German at MLC, First Lutheran and St. Georg’s Lutheran Church. In the spring of 2020 I was asked to join the leadership at Fresh Expressions Canada. I figured they really needed a Lutheran in the mix and stepped up. My favorite bible verse is found in Romans 15,7: Accept one another as Christ accepts us.
2. Prerit Gomes
My name is Prerit Gomes and I am part of the Church Council. I joined the congregation in 2017 when I moved to Canada from India. When I was new in the country I was looking for a way to be part of a community and my association with the Lutheran community as an exchange program many years ago made me look out for a Lutheran church in the area I lived. By God’s will I walked into Martin Luther and I felt I belonged there. Even when I moved away from Lakeshore area I still feel connected with the community through the church. Hoping to contribute through the council even more!
3. Andrea Dannecker
My name is Andrea and I have been a member of our Church Council for three years and am currently serving in my second year as Vice President, together with Jocelyn. I am also chairing the Dinner Church team of which I have been a member for two years. I am excited about our many long-standing as well as new and innovative programs and am passionate about making more connections in our neighbourhood.
4. Jocelyn Sommerfeld
My name is Jocelyn and I’m currently the Vice-President of Church Council, together with Andrea, and have been serving on Council for about three years. I came to Martin Luther before I could walk, and since then I have enjoyed building relationships within the congregation and community, many of whom I now consider family. When I’m not helping out on Council, I’m planning lessons and events with our Sunday School and Dinner Church teams, chairing Round Table meetings, and participating in the Ladies’ Circle by the Lake. I’m always glad to see the many and various services that Martin Luther provides, and I look forward to seeing what the future holds.
5. Dan Sommerfeld
To the curious, I visited Martin Luther Church in 1990, 5 years after I moved to Mississauga. I used to cycle past the church from Port Credit to downtown Toronto and back when I was working on the SkyDome site during its construction. Funny how God strategizes, as I was not actively attending a church at the time. First, He made me aware, then he put me into a personal dilemma concerning enough to make me actively seek out a church for guidance. I felt quite comfortable at MLC as it felt very much like my old church in Montreal; St. John’s. My first connection was through the Youth Group and events like Camp Edgewood and Camp Lutherlyn. I got married here in 1994. Of course it wasn’t long before I joined Council (currently my 22nd year) and held various positions throughout that time. My current position is Maintenance Manager. I prefer to work behind the scenes and lend a helping hand or foot when needed. I tend to not be too serious about things and much prefer to seek out a good laugh or chuckle by way of action or word. That can be frustrating to those that seek a more serious path, but that is just who I am. I have been part of the MLC organization for almost 30 years now and I would say that the most transformational event was the decision to enlist the help of the EKD in our Pastoral search. Our God continues to strategize and plan the continuing success of our church by sending us leaders who can put His plan into action.
6. Peter Kearns
7. Martin Haefele
I am Martin Haefele and I used to live close to our church at Marina del Rey in the mid 1990, when I first noticed the Martin Luther Church while driving by numerous times. I only became an active member in 2009 and took on the role of treasurer right away. Two out of my three sons were baptized at our church and also two out of three were confirmed here with one still to come hopefully soon. I enjoy the community we have with members of German background of all generations.
8. Kai Herrmann
My Name is Kai Herrmann and I joined Council this year. My family joined Martin Luther when we were looking for a congregation to baptize our first child. I moved here from Germany 17 years ago and this congregation is my connection to my home country and reconnecting to the values of Lutherans. As a family we enjoy the services and the leisure activities in our congregation, and I am happy to be part of maintaining and growing the community.
9. Tanya Zielke
My name is Tanya and I am one of the Council members this year. This is my 7th year on Council. I enjoy being part of a team that helps the congregation move forwards. When I’m not on Council, I’m busy singing in the choir, helping around the church, running camp and from time to time leading worship as a lay preacher. My most favourite part of any service is when we sing. Singing hymns is how I feel connected to God and the Holy Spirit. When I’m not at church, I’m either at school working as an Early Childhood Educator (I teach French Immersion SK) or I’m at the Olympium working for the City of Toronto. I love being able to reach out to community groups and find ways to bridge the gap between church and community. Can’t wait to see you at church!
Our Interim Pastor
Pastor Dr. Christian Ceconi who served our congregation from August 2103 to March 2020 is back in Germany, followed a call to begin his new job at Berliner Stadtmission Ev. Kirche starting April 1, 2020. See Pastor Christian’s farewell message on our blog page, http://martinluther.ca/2020/03/sunday-march-22-2020-youtube-video-online-worship/.
Rev. Steve Hoffard, the pastor of Redeemer Lutheran Church, and our partner church in the Ecumenical Internship Project has been appointed by the synod as an ordained rostered leader to oversee ministry at Martin Luther during this time of interim ministry.
Our Three Vicars
1. Vicar Silke Fahl
installed during the English service in June 2019
My name is Silke Fahl and I will be starting my overseas vicariate at MLC on June 1, 2019. I’m a so-called “waschechtes Nordlicht” (a dyed-in-the-wool North-German). I was born in Hamburg and grew up in Hanover; with holidays and many weekends spent by the sea. Hence, it was clear to me that after studying in Göttingen I should head further north again. So I did my vicariate in two villages in Ostfriesland (East Frisia). I’m a very quiet person, but adventurous. I love reading, music, horseback riding and writing. As long as I can remember, I liked to explore new places and have always been a globetrotter. Through a student exchange in 2004, I had the chance to travel to Canada for the first time. A year later I was able to go to Ste-Marie de Beauce (Quebec) with two other students again for 3 months and attended the Polyvalent Benoît-Vachon school there. With every visit to Canada, I fell more in love with this country and its people. Accordingly, I am very excited to be able to work in your congregation for the next 12 months and to get to know you and Toronto.
2. Jordan Smith
installed during the English service on September 8, 2019
Hello Martin Luther community, I’m Jordan Smith, a third year student at Martin Luther University College, and I will be completing my one-year internship at your congregation in partnership with Redeemer Lutheran. I began my seminary studies at Wycliffe College in Toronto before transferring to Luther in Waterloo last year and this summer I completed a twelve week chaplaincy placement at Royal Victoria Hospital in Barrie. I’m looking forward to being a part of this church for the next year while working with Pastor Christian and Pastor Steve at Redeemer. I moved to Toronto in 2009 after finishing my undergrad in Television Production and worked for over twelve years in the sports television industry. I have been married to Carmen since 2010 and we have two young daughters, Anitta and Eileen. Our family are members at St. Ansgar in Toronto and I have already completed field education placements at First Lutheran in downtown Toronto and St. Philip’s in Etobicoke. I am passionate about our national youth gatherings and am currently serving on the planning team for the next two gatherings. When I get some time off between studying and work I enjoy spending time at the park and on the trails with my children, reading, and trying to learn the guitar. I can’t wait to meet you all in the coming weeks and both get to know you and let you know more about me. Blessings for the start of your fall.
3. Vicar Adam McComb
installed during the English service on September 8, 2019
Hello Friends! I am already very excited to join this new adventure with MLC and Redeemer in Toronto. My name is Adam and I have come to Toronto from Egypt for my Masters of Divinity program at Trinity College. I was raised in Egypt and spent years of my early childhood in Pakistan, and have just spent the last 11 years working on ships. Needless to say, I am generally lost in the city and will depend on each of you for great restaurant recommendations and clear directions. I am in the second year of my pastoral training and am so thankful to be involved in this ecumenical/experimental program that recognizes the role we each play in taking “church” outside and everywhere. I hope to get to know each of you and understand how you live and grow your faith and how we can help others to do the same. I am sure God has some big adventures in store for all of us. Blessings!
Our Three Lay Preachers