Our staff is passionate about service, our members, old and young, the love of Christ, our community, our earth and spreading the joy of life. Meet our amazing staff!
Meet Pastor Jon,
Sister Jennie and their family!
Pastor Jonathan (Jon) Myers has been serving Joy since January 2017. Pastor Jon is originally from Maryland and is a graduate of Duke University and Princeton Seminary, and taught political science at Ohio State for eight years before entering seminary.
As a teenager Jon raced sailboats on the Chesapeake Bay with his family and helped them grow Christmas trees near Camp David, the President’s retreat outside Frederick, Maryland. He was a theater geek in high school and has been an unashamed nerd ever since.
Pastor Jon is a third generation Lutheran pastor, and his sister is now leading a congregation previously led by their grandfather in the 1950s & 60s. Jon spent many summers working at church camps in North Carolina and Ohio, and was deeply involved in Lutheran campus ministry at both Duke and Ohio State.
Pastor Jon has lived in Maryland, North Carolina, Ohio, New Jersey, Philadelphia and Southern Virginia, and along the way he learned the difference between soda, pop and Coke, how to bless people’s hearts, and appropriate uses of both “y’all” and “all y’all.” He loves playing the guitar, hiking challenging trails and watching movies of all kinds.
Pastor Jon is married to Joy’s Director of Discipleship, Sister Jennie Myers. They’ve been married since the summer of 2008 and have four young children.
Sister Jennifer (Jennie) Myers is a consecrated deaconess and part of the ELCA Deaconess Community. She has been serving Joy with her husband Pastor Jon since January 2017 as Director of Discipleship.
Sister Jennie was born in Portland, Oregon and graduated from both The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio and Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota. She studied Classical Humanities as an undergraduate and received a Masters in Children, Youth & Family Ministry from Luther Seminary. Pastor Jon & Sister Jennie met at the Lutheran Campus Ministry at Ohio State University, now known as Jacob’s Porch, and were married there in 2008.
Sister Jennie has lived in Oregon, Nebraska, Michigan, Georgia, Ohio, Minnesota, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, and attended three different elementary schools in three different states. She learned to ski on Mount Hood in Oregon at age 3, and her favorite childhood memories include fishing for largemouth bass & sunfish and playing cribbage with her grandfather at the family cabin in Minnesota.
Sister Jennie enjoys welcoming visitors & guests to Joy on Sunday mornings, listening to the faith and life stories of everyone at Joy, and discerning with folks about their spiritual gifts and how they can be used for the various ministries at Joy inside and outside the church’s walls, especially as we think about our presence in the larger community.
Dr. Alice Brook -- Director of Music Ministries/Organist -- Dr. Brook is the Director of Brook Fine Arts Academy, 81st & Harvard, where instruction for most instruments is offered plus sign language, band workshops, dance classes and musical theatre camps. She is also the accompanist for Jenks HS Vocal Music, teaches privately and accompanies and performs in the regional area.
Dr. Brook holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Missouri – Kansas City Conservatory of Music & Dance and received the coveted Graduate Award for outstanding performance, academic achievement and service. She received a Master of Music degree with full stipend from the University of Tulsa and a Bachelor of Music degree from IL Wesleyan University. Dr. Brook also studied at the Juilliard School and Manhattan School of Music.
Dr. Brook has taught at UMKC, Millikin University (IL) and TCC, is a nationally certified teacher of piano and theory and is a member of MTNA, OMTA, TAMTA, Hyechka & SAI.
Dr. Brook is married to Paul, and enjoys her dogs and riding her motorcycle.
Sarah Smith -- Office Manager -- Sarah is as we say, (from Lutherland, specifically northern Wisconsin) as of course are many from this congregation. She has been married for 39 years, with 3 adult sons, 1 lovely daughter-in-law and 2 rambunctious grandsons that she adores. Sarah has 2 rescue dogs that she and her husband love even though they shed hair constantly.
She has been a member of First Lutheran Church since 1979 and has taught Sunday School, VBS, and been on Altar Guild since joining First Lutheran. She loves to walk, read, and loves BBC television, especially detective and historical fiction. She is honored to be on staff at Joy Lutheran since 2016.
Christine Essman -- Nursery Attendant -- Christine is originally from Bakersfield, California. She is married to her husband Stephen. Although not blessed by biological children, Christine helped raise her ex-husbands children. Through those relationships she has been blessed with grandchildren, 2 of whom live with her. Christine is passionate about children, her faith and giving children a safe and fun place to learn about their own faith while their parents are in worship.