Meet Our Pastors
Rev. Susan Tjornehoj (pronounced “churn a hoy) Interim Senior Pastor
Pastor Susan Tjornehoj grew up in Colorado, a preacher’s kid, along the Front Range of the Rockies. After graduating from Luther College, beginning seminary at PLTS in Berkeley and finishing at Luther Seminary, she was married and ordained on the same day, to the coolest guy, David Wangaard. Together they headed up to Alaska to serve north of Nome. They left Alaska to serve in a 3-point parish in Baudette, MN. Pastor Sue has served on bishop’s staffs in the Northwestern Minnesota Synod, Saint Paul Area Synod and Minneapolis Area Synod as Assistant or Director of Evangelical Mission. She and Dave raised their daughter Ingrid Grace in the Como Park neighborhood of St. Paul. While there they both served, though at different times, as lead pastor of Christ Lutheran on Capitol. Since 2012, Sue has been the Senior Pastor of Christ Lutheran in the Inner Harbor of Baltimore, Maryland. After entering into an extended sabbatical (also called retirement), Pastor Sue has been delighted to be the bridge senior pastor at Bethlehem Lutheran in Fergus Falls and most recently took a 5-week missional plunge into the wonder of 6 congregations around the towns of Gary and Bejou, MacIntosh and Winger.
Rev. Jeremiah Holst Associate Pastor
Pastor Jeremiah grew up in Duluth, spending time along the shores of Lake Superior with his parents and younger brother. He attended Luther College in Decorah, IA, earning a degree in music education and spending his summers working for Voyageurs Lutheran Ministry in northern Minnesota. After college, he lived in Rochester, MN for three years while working as support staff for children with developmental disabilities and behavioral disorders. In 2007 he moved out to Berkeley, CA to attend Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary, completing his internship at United Lutheran Church in Eugene, OR and graduating in 2012. After graduation, he accepted a call to serve as Pastor at Shepherd of the Pines parish in Solway and Shevlin where he served until 2019. He lives in Bemidji with his wife, Katherine and their son, Bjorn.
Meet Our Staff
Shar Paquette Worship and Music Minister
Shar has lived in Bemidji since 1990. She has a grown daughter who lives with her husband in Moorhead, MN. Shar married her best friend, Don Carlson, the summer of 2013. They enjoy working on their cabin, walking, listening to music and reading. Shar holds a BA in Business from UND in Grand Forks, ND. Shar worked for Schoolcraft Learning Community for 14 years, and concurrently worked part-time at Calvary planning and leading contemporary worship starting in January 2012. Shar began the full-time position as Worship and Music Minister in August of 2014. It is her prayer that she continues to learn and grow into this position, and that she can bless God and Calvary through her work here.
Brett Carter Faith Formation Director
Brett grew up in Thief River Falls with regular trips to the cabin on Lavinia Road since birth (maybe before). Wendy and Brett moved into that cabin for a year in 2015 while building a home in Bagley, but surprise, in March of 2022, after six years in the new house, they moved back to Bemidji—downsizing and simplifying to make it easier to visit their four daughters and two grandchildren in four states.
Brett started a career in radio four days after high school and found his way back to that station 28 years later before accepting his most recent job as Volunteer Coordinator/Producer for KAXE/KBXE, Northern Community Radio. In between Brett worked at several radio stations, at a few newspapers, as a youth pastor in three different churches, and as an editor at Augsburg Fortress Publishers in Minneapolis (check the front of your Spark Bible—his name is in there!). He’s looking forward to collaborating with all the members of Calvary to work on the question, will our next generation have faith?
Garrett Fultz Church Administrator
Garrett moved from Little Falls to Bagley at the age of ten with his four siblings and parents, Curt and Kitty Fultz. He graduated from Bagley High School in 2012 and decided to pursue a college degree at Bemidji State University. After over a year attending psychology courses, Garrett switched his focus toward business. In 2016 he graduated from BSU with a degree in Business Administration with emphases in Marketing and Management. Prior to being employed at Calvary Lutheran Church, Garrett was a Manager at Arby’s while working as a Merchandiser for Nabisco in Bemidji.
Kim Warren Administrative Assistant
Kim grew up in Rogers Minnesota, and moved to Bemidji six years ago with her husband, Rev. Pete Warren, who is the pastor at Aardahl Lutheran Church of Bemidji. In June of 2018 Kim and her husband welcomed a son Marcus to the family. In her free time, she enjoys watching movies, listening to music, and spending time with her husband and son. She has an extensive ministry background that started as a volunteer in her home congregation in Rogers, MN, and followed her through to serving on a year-long ministry team with Youth Encounter, and then working in the Youth Encounter office. In 2004, she completed the Youth and Family Ministry Certification course through Wartburg Seminary and was a youth director for a short time. Since then, she has had a variety of jobs in a variety of fields from retail customer service, to office management, to paraprofessional. Kim is ecstatic to join the staff at Calvary and looks forward to the journey ahead.
Tony Kerr Preschool Director
Hello Calvary Family. My name is Tony Kerr. I have been a member of Calvary for 20 years or more and some of you may recognize me from my work on the Praise Team. I have been involved in education for 20 years from teaching to administration, in levels from preschool through college. I hold a Bachelors of Science in Music and K-12 Education, a Masters of Arts in Education Leadership, a Specialist Degree in School Administration and another Specialist Degree in Organizational Leadership. I started my education leadership position in Red Lake as the Principal at St. Mary’s Mission school. From there I moved around the area leading schools through certain challenges and tasks before realizing I was chasing around for bigger positions and all the time losing focus on what was really important, serving God. The position for the Calvary Preschool Director came to my attention, and with prayer, discussions with my family and a few calls to some friends, I decided to apply for this position, and by grace, was selected to serve. My draw to the position was that we are a Christ focused family, and that IS the priority, above all! I am excited to serve the Calvary community, to help and support our children, families and staff, and to serve God in a new way. My family and I live in Bemidji, have been students and families of Calvary’s Preschool programs, we have been married here, baptized here, and continue to serve in new and exciting capacities as our family grows here. This opportunity is a gift as I am now able to serve in a more intensive capacity. My office door will always be open, I will listen, serve, and lead as Calvary sees fit, all the while, keeping the focus of the programs on God.
Rayne Heck Multimedia Minister
Rayne grew up in Fargo ND and moved to Bemidji in 4th grade. He quickly expressed interest in being involved in a church. Rayne’s ministry background began and continues to grow quickly. He got confirmed at Calvary in September of 2020 and began attending CLUB in 2021. He started finding additional things to do around Calvary, like taking a Teacher’s Aide position at the preschool. In July of 2021, Rayne was given a new opportunity. He was asked to volunteer as an AV tech for worship services. (He was very unsure of this, as he didn’t see himself as a tech wizard in any aspect!) But he took the dive and began volunteering. Before he knew it, he was offering to be there every Sunday and every Wednesday to sit at that desk and serve his church. In January of 2022, Rayne was offered the Multimedia Minister position and very quickly added music and media ministry to his (extremely long) list of passions. He is extremely grateful for the opportunity to become a part of the church staff, and everyone on staff has quickly become his family. Rayne is passionate about church history, culture, and human rights. This passion turned into a dream and is now a reality. Rayne will begin his college education by majoring in Sociology and minoring in Human Resources Management as a Post-Secondary Education Student and is interested in continuing his education by going to seminary after he finishes his undergraduate degree. He will study at Bemidji State University full-time in August of 2022 after he finishes his sophomore year at Bemidji High School in June 2022. Long-term, he dreams to be a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) consultant/specialist. His dream is to do this in a church setting to evaluate how inclusive churches are and help them better serve their communities and God. You can usually find Rayne in the sanctuary at the tech desk, but when he’s not there he spends his time being a leader, serving others, shopping, spending time on the trails riding with his family, and drinking iced coffee. (Rayne will never turn down an iced coffee. Like, ever.) Rayne’s pronouns are he/him (what are pronouns?), and he is always happy and eager to answer questions about himself and his identity journey.
Len Ochowicz Day Custodian
Hello, my name is Len Ochowicz. My wife Kathie and I relocated to Bemidji in July 2020 to be near our youngest daughter, Erin, and her family. She came here to attend nursing classes at BSU years ago, met a young man, and has been in this area since! Erin has three siblings with families of their own Jason, Jaime, and Adam. Our four children have blessed us with 13 grandchildren. We are both retired, actively involved in church, and have been together for 48 years. Len began as day custodian on December 1, 2021. Len also serves as a council member at Calvary.
Gene Bright is the evening and weekend custodian at Calvary Lutheran Church. He was born in St. Cloud, MN and graduated from Stillwater High School in St. Cloud. Gene is a veteran of the United States Army and served in Vietnam. In his spare time, Gene enjoys reading, watching a little television and working in the garden.