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Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Ephesians 6:10-13 KJV

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Thursday, November 5, 2015

WELS District President Bullies Council To Protect Pastor Wall.
Six Page Love Letter to Minor Girl?

Pastor Steve Wall still has his call.

Christ Lutheran Church, WELS, Juneau, Alaska

Pastor Steve Wall, married with four children, had his call rescinded by the church council after writing a six-page love letter to a minor girl. Other reasons were given as well.

District President Steinbrenner flew in and bullied council members into quitting, saving the pastor's call. He laughed off the love letter to the minor girl and said it would not hold up in court.

The meeting left the members wondering how long this behavior has been going on and protected by the synod, truly an abusive sect.

When the DP is done destroying this congregation, the synod will pocket the million dollars the property is worth.

Ex-WELS Layman:
This self-serving wolf [John Steinbrenner], undoubtedly following synodical protocol, was a real piece of work.  He did not care one iota about the harmed child and her family, the council, the membership, or glorifying God.  He only cared about Holy Mother Synod and undoing what the council had already decided.  This toxic DP did so rattle two immature council members that one consciously mischaracterized the previous decision and the other backed down.

Although nearly a life-long WELSian, I resigned from all ties to the WELS and this church.  My final words to the DP were, “There are those that say the WELS is an abusive sect.  I have now experienced this for myself.”

Our Staff
At Cross of Christ we are truly grateful for our gifted spiritual leaders. Because our pastors correctly handle God’s saving Word, we honor them and their work. Likewise, our shepherds serve us tirelessly because they want our church family to continually grow closer to Jesus our Savior. As with our church family’s oneness in faith, our pastors share a unified philosophy toward team ministry that results in giving God their best without concern for individual credit. We are proud of our pastors and the way they work well together to meet the needs of our family, encourage individuals and motivate and rejuvenate each other with God’s Word.

Pastor John Steinbrenner:

In 1987, Pastor John Steinbrenner graduated from Northwestern College (Watertown, WI) with a B.A. Four yea
rs later he earned his Masters of Divinity from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, including a year of internship at Grace Lutheran Church in Portland, OR. After serving as an associate pastor of a large church in southern Minneapolis for three years, John was Called by the Pacific Northwest Mission Board to start a church in NW Boise. John and his wife Carrie have raised their three children (Hans, Tarah, Mark) in Idaho since 1994.  Carrie teaches at Cross of Christ’s Preschool and loves to cook, read and garden if she has a spare moment. Pastor Steinbrenner tries to keep up with his sons on the basketball court and he enjoys a round of golf now and again.

The Steinbrenners are grateful for the privilege God has given them to be involved in the lives of this wonderful Christian family.

Email Pastor Steinbrenner at


Pastor Matt Zimpelmann: 

In 1998, Pastor Matt Zimpelmann graduated from Martin Luther College (New Ulm, MN) with a B.A. Four years later he  earned his Masters of Divinity from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, including a year of internship at Messiah Lutheran Church in Wichita, KS. After serving as the pastor of two churches in central Nebraska for seven years, Matt accepted a Call to Cross of Christ, Boise. He and his wife Gina brought their two children, Michael and Lily, to Boise in the spring of 2009.

In her free time, Gina loves to cook, run and bike with her young family. Pastor Z. adds a variety of athletics to his list of enjoyments – both watching and competing.

The Zimpelmanns are thankful that God has brought them to Idaho and are thrilled with the opportunity to grow closer to Jesus with God’s precious people.

Email Pastor Zimpelmann at

Pastor Ben Workentine:

In 2008 Pastor Ben Workentine graduated Martin Luther College (New Ulm, MN) with a B.A.  After finishing his undergrad degree, he packed up and moved to Asia where, for two years, he taught English during the day to college students and lead Bible studies at night.  His mission experience there has proven integral to his worldview and love for mission work.  In 2010, Ben moved back to the States to attend Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary earning his Masters in Divinity in 2014 which included a year of internship at Holy Word in Austin, TX.   Ben accepted the Call to Cross of Christ in June 2014 and he and his wife, Kim moved to the Treasure Valley in August 2014.  Ben and Kim have been looking forward to getting to Cross of Christ.  They are eager to get to know the whole Cross of Christ family and roll up their sleeves and join in the ministry in Boise.

Email Pastor Workentine at

Kristen Koepsell, Church and Change Debutante:

Staff Minister Kristen Koepsell graduated from Wisconsin Lutheran College in 2003 with a B.A. in Psychology and minors in Communication and Theology, and is Synodically-certified as a Staff Minister from Martin Luther College. She served as Staff Minister at St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Middleton, WI, from 2003 until 2012.  As Coordinator of Music and Elementary Education & Fellowship at Cross of Christ, Kristen accompanies worship services, directs all choirs, and mentors other musicians of all ages in using their gifts in worship. She also coordinates Sunday school and Youth Ministries for grades Kindergarten through 5th.

Kristen likes to spend her free time keeping up with friends and family scattered about the country; reading (esp. sci-fi and classic literature) and writing; listening to, playing, and writing music; resale/thrift/consignment shopping, and pursuing both spiritual and physical fitness.

Email Kristen Koepsell at

Carrie Steinbrenner:

In 1986, Carrie graduated from Dr. Martin Luther College in New Ulm, Minnesota with a Bachelor of Science in Education.  For 3 years she taught a 1st/2nd grade combination class in Jenera, Ohio.  After getting married, Carrie continued her time in the classroom in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where she taught a 4 year-old preschool class in the mornings and a 3rd/4th grade combination class in the afternoons.  Carrie and husband John moved to Idaho in 1994.  For several years she left the formal classrooms to make her home a place of learning for her 3 young children (those "young" children are now grown adults!).  Carrie returned to the classrooms of NW Ada County in 1998 as a substitute teacher in our Meridian School District.  Because of her extensive experience in early childhood education, Carrie was asked to open and serve as our head teacher here at Cross of Christ Preschool.  We have been blessed to have her as our teacher from 2005 to the present.

Email Carrie Steinbrenner at

Deb Arstein:

As the Office Administrator at Cross of Christ, Deb is responsible for the day to day operations of our office, relieving our Pastors of administrative responsibilities, as well as assisting our lay ministry leaders in their service.  Prior to joining Cross of Christ full time in August 2011, Deb was active in a variety of our ministries, including our annual Soccer Camp and Preschool, as well as serving as our church accountant.  In addition Deb has held several corporate positions around the Treasure Valley in financial and administrative roles.
Deb and her husband Mark are busy raising three kids (college and middle school ages) and enjoying all their varied activities.  The Arsteins also enjoy spending time camping through out Idaho.

Email Deb Arstein at


Let us not give up meeting together…but let us encourage one another…as you see the Day approaching. ~ Hebrews 10:25