LBS Class of 2015

LBS Faculty and Graduates (L to R): Professor Nathan Oldenkamp, Dr. David Veum, Dr. Mark Erickson, Dr. Eugene Boe, Matthew Sonnenberg, Jordan Spina, Nick Joyal, Ryan Dittman, Brent Andrews, Michael Hussey, Professor Brad Pribbenow, Dr. Gaylan Mathiesen and Dr. Sigurd Grindheim. Not pictured: Tim Collins.

LBS Faculty and Graduates (L to R): Professor Nathan Oldenkamp, Dr. David Veum, Dr. Mark Erickson, Dr. Eugene Boe, Matthew Sonnenberg, Jordan Spina, Nick Joyal, Ryan Dittman, Brent Andrews, Michael Hussey, Professor Brad Pribbenow, Dr. Gaylan Mathiesen and Dr. Sigurd Grindheim. Not pictured: Tim Collins.

BRENT ANDREWS

Brent’s background includes work as a public school librarian, a middle school teacher, and a specialist in technology. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Music and a Master of Arts in Library Science. He is married to Kari. Brent and Kari serve as foster parents. His daughter, Micaela, is a college junior.

Brent came to LBS from Appleton, WI where he and Kari were members of Hope LBC. Hope provided scholarship funds as Brent earned a Master of Divinity degree. After graduating, he began serving LBS as Librarian and Media Specialist.

Brent says of his seminary experience, “Growing up, I had a lot of different theological backgrounds—but they were either all law or all gospel. Now I love them both and know that they are both crucial to us in our daily walk. I am convinced of God’s grace to me as a sinner and of his call upon my life. I deeply appreciated the seminary community as we shared life together and the safety it provided as I grappled with theology.

TIM COLLINS

Tim has a variety of backgrounds. He has served in ministry as a worship leader and a youth leader. He has experience working with Native American high school students in the counseling area. He supported his family during his schooling years by working as a contractor. He and his wife Monica have four children: Alexandra (18), Emily (15), Lukas (11), and Leah (9).

Tim graduated from Wadena/Deer Creek (MN) High School in 1992. In 2011, he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Regent University, Virginia Beach, VA. Tim has now earned a Certificate in Theological Studies and plans to continue his studies at LBS. He is open to call in a ministry of pastoral care, possibly in a bi-vocational capacity as a roofing contractor.

Tim reflects, “I know my journey has just begun, but through my educational development I am now more prepared to serve Jesus Christ. I will miss the times of sharing my life with my peers and professors as we experienced growth together. The bond that I experienced with those at LBS is something that I will take into my future calls and will be forever thankful for.

RYAN DITTMAN

Ryan was recommended to LBS by Rev. Harold Rust, director of the Canadian Lutheran Bible Institute. LBS President Veum called Ryan while he was working at a Bible camp in Saskatchewan. Ryan had just proposed to Bethany at a camp talent show, and he was then hiding from some kids under a desk in the camp office during a game of hide-n-seek. Ryan claims, tongue-in-cheek, that he was convinced to come to LBS under extreme duress!

Ryan grew up in Calgary, AB. He earned his Bachelor of Applied Christian Studies from CLBI in 2010. In July, Ryan began as Youth and Young Adult Pastor at Peace LBC in Calgary.

Ryan says of his experience at LBS, “The seminary building was like a sanctuary for me. It was a place to study, a place to get away. It felt like home. Through the program I learned the distinctives of our theology. Because we put the Scriptures first, I have come to strongly believe what we teach. Practically, I also appreciated the many opportunities to preach in the community.

MICHAEL HUSSEY

Michael came to LBS out of a background in youth ministry, first in the Twin Cities and later Sidney, MT. He and his wife Gretchen are the parents of Seth (4) and Emilia (1½).

Michael graduated from Our Redeemer’s Christian High School in Minot, ND, and earned a Certificate in Biblical Studies from the Association of Free Lutherans Bible School in Plymouth, MN, and a Bachelor of Science in Ministry from Northwestern College, St. Paul, MN.

After Mike’s first two years at LBS, Sidney LBC called him to be their pastor. Mike accepted, and completed his Master of Divinity degree through the LBS distance program.

Mike writes, “I really appreciated a book that I read in my first semester of seminary, A Little Exercise for Young Theologians by Helmut Thielicke. At first I didn’t like it. The author was saying, ‘You are not as special, smart, or well-educated as you believe. You need to realize you have a lot to learn.’ Though I didn’t think so at the time, Thielicke was right. I had a lot to learn. I have not yet arrived; I simply rest on the promises of God.

NICK JOYAL

Prior to coming to LBS, Nick worked as a carpenter framing houses. Nick graduated from Aden Bowman Collegiate Institute in Saskatoon, SK. He later earned a Bachelor of Applied Christian Studies from Canadian Lutheran Bible Institute.

One of the leaders of his church, Art Hundeby of Rock of Ages LBC in Saskatoon, took note of Nick’s gifts and began mentoring him. Art and his wife Connie were influential in encouraging Nick to go to Bible School. The president of that school—once again Harold Rust—recommended Nick to LBS.

Nick says that he came to LBS needing to learn about God’s grace: “During my seminary years I have grown up. The experience has broken me down. I have learned to live by grace in the gospel. I know that I am not prepared for everything that will come my way, but I am prepared with a foundation in the gospel to figure out how to respond.

Nick married fiancé Demara Wig on June 13, and in July he begins serving as pastor of Living Hope Lutheran Brethren in Beaumont, Alberta.

MATTHEW SONNENBERG

Matt grew up in southern Alberta, graduated from Kate Andrew’s High School in Coaldale, AB, then earned his Diploma in Geomatics Engineering Technology.

He began to study at Lutheran Theological Seminary in Saskatoon, SK. After completing most of his degree, Matt received a short-term call from Sidney LBC and completed his program on-line. He and his wife, Rachel, will move to Edmonton, Alberta where he will serve as pastor of St. Matthew’s Evangelical Lutheran Church.

Matthew writes, “I especially appreciated the overall community of LBS. The professors would join the students in the commons area and discuss various topics stemming from a class or lecture. They weren’t there just to teach, but to ask questions and listen. The student body was small enough to get to know everyone, yet large enough to have a wide range of differing opinions and voices. I feel like it is a gem of our church body and look forward to seeing the closer relationship with the synod offices as they now share a building.

JORDAN SPINA

Jordan graduated from Memorial High School, Eau Claire WI, and earned a Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education from the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire. He went on to earn the Master of Theological Studies degree from LBS in 2009. In between, he worked in the housing and resident life departments at universities in California and in Wisconsin.

Jordan says of LBS, “I especially appreciated the availability of my professors and classmates. Professors not only teach, they acts as mentors and confidants. They teach lessons with their lives, their theology, and their personal stories. The same is true of the men and women I have gone to class with. At LBS issues of theology are worked out, and hard questions are made personal. Through it all we are formed more into God’s image and the likeness of his Son.

This fall, Jordan will pursue a Ph.D in Theology and World History at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, MO. Eventually, he would like to teach on a university campus and engage students with the reality of the Christian message.