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Mary Suomala Folkerds, Lead Pastor

I am honored to serve as the Lead Pastor of this dynamic and mission-driving congregation. We are blessed to be growing in every age group, as we find ways to serve others in Jesus’ name. My passions in ministry include preaching, memorizing Scripture, and sharing life with the people of this community. I am married to Aaron Suomala Folkerds, who is a professor of counseling at Minnesota State University-Moorhead. We have a son named Paul who is in elementary school, and a daughter, Helena, who passed away in 2008. We also have an exchange student from Slovakia this year. 

I graduated from Minnesota State University-Moorhead in 2001 with a degree in Russian Studies and Economics. I graduated with a Masters of Divinity degree from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago in 2007. My husband and I served as pastors together before I was called to Good Shepherd in 2012, and Aaron furthered his education in the area of counseling.

Favorite Bible Story: Luke 24:13-35 (Jesus shows up when and where we least expect him! I keep finding this to be true!)

My motto is: Go places and see stuff! I love to travel, whether it is to the North Shore or to the other side of the world. I lived in Finland two different times in high school and college. And during seminary my husband and I lived in Brazil for a year. We got a dog shortly after our first trip to Ireland and named him Dublin.