Saint Stephens Staff

The staff at Saint Stephens is a dynamic group of individuals, each committed to fulfilling God's calling, in large part through their work here at Saint Stephens. 


They also function together as an incredible team, working together to grow our church, mission, and community here in Merrill, knowing that together we can achieve more than any one of us could ever hope to achieve alone. We believe God has led each of us to be here in this time and place to do God's work. 


Along the way, we have a lot of fun! Laughter is a vital part of our workday and smiles are the norm. We are definitely blessed!

  • Rev. KYLE CARNES

    senior MINISTER

    FAVORITE QUOTE:

    "PREACH THE GOSPEL CONTINOUSLY. IF NECESSARY, USE WORDS." - ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI

    Rev. Kyle Carnes is a native of Michigan, having grown up in Lansing and later moving to Grand Rapids when he was called to ministry at the First (Park) Congregational Church, UCC. He brings with him a vibrant energy for ministry and a passion for community. He is married to Jamie, and they have three children.


    Responsibilities:

    • Worship
    • Counseling
    • Administration
    • Planning
    • Community Outreach
    • Christian Education
    You may contact Rev. Carnes via email at:  rev.kyle@ststephensucc.net
  • TINA L. SCOTT

    Business manager


    MY PHILOSOPHY:  "THE GLASS IS HALF EMPTY ... AND IN MY CASE, IT'S USUALLY COFFEE."

    Photographer, business owner, and now Business Manager at Saint Stephens. Tina L. Scott went to NTC for Business Management and has been using those skills in various capacities ever since. She still continues to operate her own business, Photography by Tina, specializing in wedding photography, and when she is not in the office at Saint Stephens, she can probably be found in either her home office working on wedding portraits, shooting a wedding on location, or embarking on some other creative pursuit. Tina is married to Mark and has two grown children and one granddaughter.


    Responsibilities:

    • Newsletter
    • Website
    • Financial
    • Church Database
    • Reports & Statistics
    • Payroll
    You can contact Tina via email at:  tina@ststephensucc.net
  • KELLY KREMBS

    ADMINISTRATIVE Assistant


    self-proclaimed "Crazy cat lady"

    Kelly Krembs brings a big smile and friendly energy to the church office. She has been in administrative support roles throughout most of her career and is a welcome complement to the Saint Stephens' staff. In previous years, Kelly has been active in the facilitation of the annual Relay for Life in Merrill, a cause that is near to her heart. 


    Kelly shares her home with her brother, Mike, and several much-loved cats. She can also be found at craft fairs selling some of her "Kreative Kreations."


    Responsibilities:

    • Administrative Support
    • Bulletin
    • Reception
    • Medical Ministry
    • Orders Supplies
    • Sunday School Support
    You can reach Kelly via email at:  kelly@ststephensucc.net
  • DARLENE JOHNSON

    ACCOMPANIST AND DIRECTOR of the chime choir


    WORLD TRAVELER WITH STORIES TO TELL

    Darlene Johnson quite simply makes beautiful music here at Saint Stephens. On the organ or the piano or directing the chime choir, she lends her talents to our music ministry. Darlene is our primary accompanist for worship services in addition to funerals, weddings, and other special occasions. When she is not playing music or giving piano lessons, she can be found relaxing at her cabin, canning, or spending time with her husband, Jim, and her children and grandchildren. 


    Responsibilities:

    • Organist
    • Pianist
    • Director of Chime Choir
  • JAMES BJORKLUND

    MUSIC DIRECTOR


    HISTORY BUFF

    James "Jim" Bjorklund joined Saint Stephens as our Music Director on August 1, 2016, after retiring  from the position of High School Choir Director at Merrill High School after 24 years. He taught for 13 years at Carl Sandburg High School in Orland Park, Illinois, prior to coming to to Merrill.


    A native of Manitowoc, Wisconsin, Jim is a 1979 graduate of Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, where he studied with Weston Noble. He earned a Master of Music Degree in Choral Conducting from Arizona State University where he taught undergraduate studio voice. Over the years, Jim has directed several church choirs in various denominations, most recently at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church here in Merrill. Jim just started his fifth year of teaching studio voice and techniques at the University of Wisconsin - Marathon County. 


    When not teaching music, Jim also enjoys performing. He has performed three times with the Robert Shaw Choral Institute Choir at Carnegie Hall. Locally, he has been active in recent Wausau Community Theater productions, performing lead roles in "South Pacific," "Man of LaMancha," "Les Miserables," and "1776" to name several.


    Jim and his wife, Pamela, are also busy being grandparents to five active grandchildren. In his spare time, he enjoys gardening, reading, hunting, and studying history.


    Responsibilities:

    • Choir Director
    • Music Scheduling
  • JASON CHANDLER

    Facilities manager


    "MAN CANNOT LIVE ON BREAD ALONE.  Pop tarts?  Maybe!"

    Jason was born in Minneapolis, raised in Marathon City, and currently lives in Wausau with his wife Monica, three children, and pets. He brings with him almost 30 years of maintenance and property management experience related to houses, apartments, schools, and hotels, and is experienced in all aspects of property maintenance and management ... preventative, routine, and emergency.


    Jason says most of his "spare" time is spent repairing and selling homes and spending time with his family. He also enjoys hunting, fishing, playing guitar, building computer systems, metal detecting with Monica, and fixing ... everything! When he's not fixing or discovering, he also enjoys creating. One of his favorite hobbies is making jewelry and rings from unique coins.


    Responsibilities:

    • Repairs
    • Maintenance
    • Janitorial
    • Groundskeeping
    • Supply Purchasing

    You can email Jason at:  jason@ststephensucc.net

  • MARY PAT CAMPBELL

    Interim pastoral associate


    "What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us."

    - Ralph waldo emerson

    Mary Pat Campbell was born and raised in Southwest Montana, the eldest of three children.


    In her first career, Mary Pat was a registered nurse. She then "transitioned from care of the body to care of the soul as a board certified chaplain," Mary Pat describes. She has ministered in hospitals, hospices, and assisted living facilities, and was most recently the Chaplain at Bell Tower Residence here in Merrill until her retirement the end of March 2017.


    Mary Pat traveled to Europe to celebrate her retirement and then joined St. Stephens on May 1, 2017, as our Interim Pastoral Associate working two to three days per week.


    Mary Pat has "three children and three wonderful grandsons--Jason, Leo, and Sidney" who bring her great joy.


    What else brings her joy? Her calling. "I am passionate and humbled when hearing another's story and journeying with them for awhile," Mary Pat says.


    In her spare time, she likes to read, garden, travel, and volunteer.


    Responsibilities:

    • Visitation
    • Congregational Care
    • Pastoral Care Training
    • Adult Education

    You can email Mary Pat at:  marypat@ststephensucc.net