Pastor: The Rev. Michael D. Fick
Director of Music: Dr. John Elmquist
Parish Nurse: Marcia Smith, BSN, FCN
Youth and Household Ministry: The Rev. Emily Heitzman
Building and Volunteer Coordinator: Derek Stienmetz
Bookkeeper: Nathan Tolzmann
John Elmquist has been the music director at Ebenezer since 1994 and he brings diverse musical experiences and ambitions to his work in the church. The worship is regularly enhanced by guest musicians who represent a variety of styles. This includes an excellent jazz group that plays on each 2nd Sunday. The choir, the cornerstone of Ebenezer’s music ministry, is a group that welcomes anyone who is interested and that does a balanced mixture of old and new material including many things that are composed and arranged by John.
John received his DMA in music composition from the University of Memphis where he studied with Don Freund, and his MM in piano from Virginia Commonwealth University where he studied with Landon Bilyeu. In addition to being Ebenezer’s music director, John serves on the faculties of the Chicago High School for the Arts, the Merit School of Music and the People’s Music School. He also works in and around Chicago as a bass player.
In 1999 John formed the ensemble HardArt groop as a vehicle for performing his music. This ad hoc ensemble, ranging in size from 3-20 players, has produced 14 recordings and currently performs periodically at various venues in Chicago that have included the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park, the Green Mill and Northeastern Illinois University. Much of the music of the group can be heard at hardartgroop.com .
In January, 2011, he won first prize in the Rapido! composition competition held by the Atlanta Chamber players, receiving a commission to be performed in the 2011-12 seasons of the Atlanta Chamber Players, Boston Musica Viva and Chicago’s Fifth House Ensemble. Also in 2011 he will hold a fellowship at Georgia’s Hambidge Creative Residency Program. In 2007 he received an Individual Artist Grant from the Illinois Arts Council.
Marcia Smith, BSN, FCN, Parish Nurse
The Rev. Emily Heitzman, Youth and Households Ministry
Edgewater Congregations Together
(Ebenezer, Immanual, and Unity Lutheran Churches)
Emily grew up in Waterloo, IA and first felt called into youth ministry when she was a junior in high school. She graduated from the University of Nebraska in 2004 where she majored in vocal music performance and became an avid Cornhusker fan. GO BIG RED! After working in St. Louis for four years, she made Chicago her home in the fall of 2008, where she began her studies at Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston.
In May of 2011, Emily was hired as the part time E.C.T. (Edgewater Congregations Together) Youth Director and started the E.C.T. Youth Ministry, a joint youth group for 6th-12th graders from the neighborhood and from Ebenezer, Immanuel, and Unity Lutheran churches in Edgewater.
Emily graduated from Garrett-ETS in 2012. In 2013, she was ordained by the Presbytery of Chicago (PCUSA) and installed as the Edgewater Congregations Together Pastor with Youth and Households.
Prior to her current call, she has served in youth ministry at Evangelical Covenant, Congregational, and American Baptist churches… Some of her colleagues call her an ecumenical bricolage.
Emily loves hiking in the mountains, attending indie and bluegrass concerts, biking along Lake Michigan, training for half-marathons, and singing opera and musical theatre. She has a heart for youth, justice, and the Huskers, and can often been seen with coffee or a Guinness. She resides with her husband, Jonathan, in Edgewater.
You can find more of Emily’s reflections, sermons, and youth ministry ideas on her blog at: http://musingsfromabricolage.wordpress.com.
Derek Stienmetz, Building and Volunteer Coordinator
Nathan Tolzmann, Bookkeeper