Rev. Thomas H. Harries
Rev. Thomas Harries has served as Senior Pastor at Hope since 2004. He is a graduate of both Concordia Teachers College, Seward, NE and Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, MO. Pastor Harries served in ministry as a Lutheran teacher and parish musician for fifteen years prior to entering pastoral ministry.
Pastor Harries and his wife, Diane, are blessed with three children; Brian, Lisa, and Mark. They also have been blessed with two granddaughters, Anneka and Linnea. Diane has been a teacher for many years, both in Lutheran and public schools, and continues to serve as a substitute teacher. She is also active in children’s ministry at Hope.
Pastor Harries enjoys music, golf, hunting, yardwork, gardening, spectator sports, photography, and travel. He finds joy in communicating and relating the Gospel of Jesus Christ to people of all ages and backgrounds. One activity of special interested is providing tractor and hayrides to church members of all ages.
Rev. Michael A. Penikis
Rev. Michael Penikis has served as Associate Pastor at Hope Lutheran Church and School since 2000. He has a BS in Geology from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, DCE certification from Concordia–St. Paul, and M.Div. (minor in systematic theology) from Concordia Theological Seminary in Ft. Wayne, Ind. He is a native of Milwaukee and grew up in the suburb of Brown Deer. His wife Linda, a native of Michigan, served as a DCE in Illinois. They have been married since 1991 and have one son, Krisjanis. Besides theology, Pastor Penikis’ interests include astronomy, birds, hymn writing, vexillology (flags), heraldry, geography, language, sports logos, and graphic design. He is of course a proud Cheesehead and fan of Wisconsin sports teams.
Mrs. Nancy Jankowski
Mrs. Jankowski attended Inter-American School in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala from 3rd grade to 12th grade. Quetzaltenango is a beautiful city nestled between mountains in Guatemala. She learned to speak Italian, Spanish, and English. Of the three languages, she speaks English the best, even though it was the third language she learned.
Upon graduating from IAS, Mrs. Jankowski went to Concordia University in Seward, Nebraska to pursue a teaching degree. She graduated in 2000 and has been educating children ever since. She started her teaching career at Abiding Savior Lutheran School in Lake Forest, California. In 2007, she was called to serve at Emmanuel Lutheran Church and School which is located in the western part of North Carolina, among the Blue Ridge Mountains. In 2013, she began serving at Hope Lutheran and Christian School in Levittown, PA as their principal and teacher. She has been teaching in Lutheran schools since 2000 and in 2015 began her work as principal at Hope Lutheran School.
“Train a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” – Proverbs 22:6
Miss LeAnn Miller
Director of Christian Education (DCE)
Miss LeAnn has served as DCE at Hope Lutheran Church since August 2014. She graduated Concordia University Seward with a BA in Theology and a Certificate of Director of Christian Education with emphases in Family and Youth.
Miss LeAnn grew up in the country in Nebraska. For her DCE internship, she lived in Wisconsin. She has three sisters- one older, two younger. All of her immediate family lives in Nebraska. She enjoys books, geocaching, being outside enjoying God’s creation, and spending time with family. Her favorite Bible verse is Ecclesiastes 1:2 “‘Meaningless, Meaningless,’ says the Teacher. ‘All is meaningless!'” If Miss LeAnn is not pointing to Christ in everything she does, everything becomes meaningless.
Dr. Louis Schuler
Dr. Schuler has served as a music and choir director and educator at churches and schools across the United States. He has a BA in Music Education from St. Olaf College, an MA in Choral Conducting from the University of Iowa, and a PhD in Historical Performance Practice from Washington University, St. Louis. His performing specialty was wind instruments of the Renaissance and Baroque, and his dissertation dealt with the music of early German hymnody. He is the editor of the Cantus Christi hymnal and psalter. “Duck” currently serves as Music Director at Hope Lutheran Church, as well as teaching Latin and music at Whitefield Academy in Kansas City, Mo.
Nancy D. Strange has been involved with Hope’s handbell choir since 1998 and has served as the director since 2001. Nancy was first introduced to handbells in 1991 through Our Savior Lutheran Church in Raleigh, NC. She was fortunate to gain ringing and directing experience by working with the world renowned community handbell group, The Raleigh Ringers. She has directed children’s handbell choirs at Our Savior and at Hope. She also enjoyed playing in a handbell choir and ensemble for First Lutheran Church in Gainesville, FL.
Nancy and her husband, Brian, are blessed with two children, Chris and Lauren, and several dogs and cats. She enjoys playing the piano, fostering and volunteering at the Great Plains SPCA, hiking, gardening, and loves to travel with her family, especially exploring the Caribbean islands.
Bryan Wallace has served Hope Lutheran Church & School as Facilities Management Director since May 2012. In addition to his custodial duties, as Facility Manager, he schedules the use of all rooms, HVAC system, door lock system and directs a part time custodial staff.
Bryan has an A.A. degree from JCCC, a B.S. degree in Biology from UMKC, and a B.S. degree in Horticulture from Kansas State Univ. He has 35+ year experience in the Horticulture Industry.
Bryan has been a member of the Church since 1986, serving on the Board of Elders for 22 years. He and his wife Linda, live in Shawnee. They have 2 grown children, Marty and Amanda and 1 grandson, Hurley. Both children attended Hope Lutheran School from K through 8th grade.
Bryan is humbled to serve his Lord and Savior, by attending to the needs of Hope Lutheran Church and School.
Technology DirectorDoris Stava has served Hope Lutheran Church and School as Technology Director since November 2007. She enjoys the wide variety of IT challenges at Hope and also coaching the Robotics Club and Math Club.
Doris graduated from Emporia State University with a BS in Math and Computer Science and worked in programming and project leadership positions at DST Systems in Kansas City, Missouri. She left DST after 12 years to devote more time to her family before coming to Hope Lutheran to fill the Technology Director position.
Doris and her husband Steve joined Hope Lutheran Church in 1994. They have two daughters who both attended Hope Lutheran School from preschool through 8th grade.
Doris feels blessed to be a part of the Hope family.