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Carlson DSC07535 10 percentPaul Carlson, Family Life Director

Paul Carlson has been working with youth at Redeemer Baptist since fall of 2014. Prior, Paul worked as a personal care assistant and went to college at Century College. Working as a personal care assistant he discovered his passion and developed his skills for working with youth.

When Paul was in the 5th grade, he was baptized at Redeemer after accepting Christ at a summer camp in Lansing Iowa. Paul was a student in Redeemer's youth program and also attended other church programs where he was a student leader. For Paul, it is important to him that following Jesus Christ is not a one-time event but a lifestyle. He believes that youth need constant growth, learning more about God, and showing others how to do the same.

Now working with the youth, Paul continues to teach others about Christ. Youth Group has developed a fun community that is after the heart of Jesus by learning how to love others and how we love ourselves and Gods plan for us. By growing closer to God they grow closer together. Hebrews 10:24-25 says "And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another and all the more as you see the Day approaching." 


Nathaniel Albrecht, Youth DirectorNathaniel DSC07528 10 percent

Nathaniel has been attending Redeemer his whole life, and he feels blessed to be part of a church family where he can learn from many godly leaders and mentors.

He loves being involved in the church, and most recently, leading the Youth Group at Redeemer. The Youth Group is a place where young people from seventh through twelfth grade can learn more about God, strengthen their faith, and form connections with others. Nathaniel enjoys helping young people study the Word, ask tough questions, and continue to grow their relationship with God. After all, faith is a journey, not a destination, and as Hebrews 12:1-2 says, we are called to “run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith.”

Nathaniel became a Christian at a young age and was baptized when he was sixteen years old. Throughout his faith journey, he has continued to realize how important it is to desire a close, meaningful relationship with Christ. Recently, God has been showing him how to be a bold witness for Christ, sharing his faith in whatever circumstances he finds himself in.

His favorite Bible verse is Philippians 1:6, which says, “And I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”

Dan Paul, ElderPaul DSC07505 10 percent

Dan was born and raised in St. Paul, MN. Throughout his childhood and early adolescence, he attended church regularly and believed in God, but never fully committed his life to Jesus Christ. After regularly listening to Christian radio programs and intently studying the scriptures, Dan realized his need for a spiritual awakening and accepted Christ as his personal savior at 22 years of age. After graduating from Bethel College in 1985 and receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree, Dan concentrated his career in the metal sales industry. Dan has been retired since 2016.

Dan has served as an elder at Redeemer for several years. He currently leads an adult Sunday School class and also serves as a children's leader in the Bible Study Fellowship ministry.

Dan has an immense love for Isaiah 53:5-6 which states: “But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.” Dan’s greatest desire is to spread a passion for the supremacy of God, just as the above verses describe a sinless and perfect sacrificial lamb who takes upon himself the sins of others so that they might be forgiven.

Dan is married to his beautiful wife Karen and is the father of three sons: Peter, Andrew, and James; and two daughters: Shelly and Kayla. Dan and Karen currently reside in Little Canada, MN.

Rod Pederson, ElderPederson DSC07460 10 percent

Rod and Kim moved to Oakdale from Minot, ND in October 2013. Rod drives tractor-trailer for a FedEx Ground contractor and Kim works at Christianson Vision Care in Hudson, WI. They visited Redeemer in search of a church home and have never left! The family of God here at Redeemer Baptist has always been supportive and we truly enjoy the strong biblical emphasis and training we receive here.

Rod is an Elder and he leads one of the Church Connection groups. He is also on the Missionary Committee. Kim is the church financial secretary. They both participate in music ministry. Their daughter Asta and her husband Isaac live in Champlin with two children, and their son Rory lives in Phoenix with his wife Rylie and their three children.

Rod came out of a destructive lifestyle when he surrendered his life to Christ in the early 80s. He’d love to say he’s always been dedicated, but it’s taken a few years to gain maturity and finally walk faithfully with Christ. One area of spiritual growth was overcoming fear and apathy by being obedient to share Christ through witnessing and giving away good news tracts. He likes to picture himself as an usher in a burning theatre, directing people toward the only exit. They will die if he is not faithful in pointing them to Christ. We have a bright flashlight to show others the way through the smoke and darkness. Most seem unaware of the danger they’re in and we must persuade them to come quickly with us before they are consumed by fire. It is an honor and privilege to be given this mission from the Lord.

Rod and Kim’s favorite passage in the Bible is 2 Corinthians 5:19-21 “…that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

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Steve Willson, Elder

Hearing the name of Jesus and going to church were not regular parts of Steve and Sharon Willson’s growing-up experience. But God got ahold of each of them in unique ways and times – Sharon via a book called "The Cross and the Switchblade," and Steve via the witness of some German and American Christians while he was serving in the Air Force.

Sharon finished high school and attended Houghton College, and Steve got out of the Air Force, spent one year in art school, and then began training to serve the Lord as a missionary.

After college, Sharon joined a short-term missions group and went to Austria for two years. After Steve finished his missionary training, he joined the same missions group (unbeknownst to Sharon) and served in South Asia for two years. After their two-year terms finished, they met at the mission headquarters in New Jersey, where they were married in 1982.

After their marriage, the Willsons served as missionaries for several more years in South Asia and returned to the U.S. in 2007. They have four grown children. They started attending Redeemer Baptist church in 2015. Steve currently serves as elder, missions committee chairman, and overseer of the church’s internet website. Sharon serves as the church treasurer and in women’s ministries.

One of their favorite verses is Isaiah 55:11, which reads, "So shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it."

Albrecht DSC07454 10 percent

Mike Albrecht, Elder

Mike grew up in Bluff Siding, Wisconsin, where he went to church but didn’t have a personal relationship with Jesus. As a teenager, Mike's sister shared verses in Romans with him that led him to confess his sins and surrender his life to his Lord and Savior, Jesus.

Mike attended Winona State University, where he met Wendy through InterVarsity Christan Fellowship. They were married in 1997, and started attending Redeemer Baptist Church in 1998.

Mike is the Director of Therapeutic Recreation at a care center. At church, he is a Connection Group leader and enjoys playing on the church softball team. Wendy is the Administrative Assistant at Redeemer.

Mike and Wendy enjoy traveling, hiking, and completing projects together. They have two grown children, Nathaniel and Jordan.

A verse that has been meaningful to Mike is Hebrews 12:2, “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

Joanna Lerud, Worship LeaderLerud DSC07501 10 percent (2)

Joanna grew up as a pastor’s kid, and her mom led her to Christ when she was a child. She met Mike Lerud while attending an InterVarsity retreat her senior year of college. They fell in love and married a year later!

Joanna and Pastor Mike taught in a high school in North Dakota for three years before attending seminary. Their first church in ministry was in Steamboat Rock, Iowa. Jo was involved in the music ministry there.

Jo's favorite part of music ministry is hearing the congregation singing enthusiastically in praise and worship!

Jo loves to hang out with her children and grandkids (Nana time), play piano and sing, go for walks, and swim in the ocean!