Our ChurchLeadership

Our Church thrives because of the energy and style of the people who are a part of our leadership. Here are a few of the people that make our church community special:

Ellen ZEllen Zienert - Pastor

Pastor Ellen came to First Church in July 2012.  Previously she served at Chapel Hill UMC in East Lansing and at Crossroads in Williamston.  Ellen's  daughter, Emma Baker, and her husband Mario Carrill live in Lansing.


One of Pastor Ellen's favorite verses of scripture is Romans 8:15b-17. "For when we cry, 'Abba! Father!' it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ-if, in fact, we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him." 



 Marie Marie Shrum - Office Administrator

Marie began working at the church in June of 1986.  Her office hours are Monday - Thursday 9:30 am - 4:30 pm with a hour lunch usually between 12 and 1 pm.  Marie and her husband, Bob have been residents of St. Johns since 1982 and transferred their membership to First UMC in 1983 from St. Louis, FUMC.  They have one daughter, Karin (and son-in-law, Charlie) and one son, Jacob and are blessed with one granddaughter, Joy!

Karen Kusenda_2012  Karen Kusenda - Choir Director

Karen has been choir director here at First UMC since 2009.  Karen and her husband, Dan are longtime members here at First UMC and reside here in St. Johns.  Dan and Karen have one daughter, Allison who lives in the Ann Arbor area with her husband, Mike and son, Tucker.

hyunahHyunah Song - Accompanist

Hyunah is new to the staff, having just started the first of May 2017.  She is from Seoul, South Korea and is a graduate student at MSU persuing her doctorate in Piano performance.  She has been at MSU for 3 year.  Please welcome her to our staff!

MargaretMargaret Schaefer - Custodian

Margaret has been our custodian since 1999.  She and her husband, Karl are longtime members her at First UMC and reside in St. Johns.  They are the proud parents of three boys and a girl and grandparents of two boys and two girls.


Beth Garcia - Lay Leader and Song Leader

Beth serves as our Song Leader most Sundays; helping us to sing God's praises in Worshp.  She also serves a the church's Lay Leader and Lay member to Annual Conference. Beth is the mother of two beautiful girls and grandmother to one girl and boy.  When she's not busy here at the church Beth works with the Head Start program in Lansing.

Many thanks to Beth for all the hats she wears!

© 2017 First United Methodist Church
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