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Morning Star Lutheran Staff

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PASTOR JOHN

head of staff pastor

Pastor John Mouritsen has been a part of the Morning Star family since 1999, when he arrived with his wife Kristen and two children, Kieran and Sofia.  In that time, the toddler and 8-week-old have grown into wonderful young adults and made empty-nesters out of him and Kristen.

PJ enjoys reading, cars (ones old enough to work on), the Panthers, and traveling.

He was raised in Connecticut and Ohio but has now lived in North Carolina longer than anywhere else, and for that, he’s grateful.

Pastor John has said on more than one occasion that even if he weren’t a pastor at MSLC, he and his family would attend this church. Pastor John loves the fact that this congregation is open and honest about the ups and downs of life and looks for ways to live out faith in every day that we are given – no matter where we are, or what we face.

He is impressed by little acts of service and devotion that are not normally celebrated but are often the most important parts of passing on faith to the next generation.                         

ED TOMPKINS

Minister of music

Edmund – or Ed, as he’s known to the MSLC family – was born in Richmond, Virginia and lived there until age 10, then spent his teenage years in Monmouth County, New Jersey

He has served as Minister of Music and Organist at Morning Star Evangelical Lutheran Church since February 2004. Prior to that, he served as Director of Music/Organist at churches in Durham, Nashville and Richmond. Ed directs two adult vocal choirs, two inter-generational handbell choirs, a youth handbell choir, and two instrumental ensembles, as well as vocal and instrumental opportunities for children.

He is a graduate of Duke University and Scarritt Graduate School. Ed has conducted handbell festivals in the Carolinas, Florida, Illinois, Tennessee, Virginia and Maryland and served on the handbell faculties at Montreat Conference on Workship and Music; Massanetta Church Music Conference; Music and Worship Arts Week at Lake Junaluska; Lutheridge Summer Music Week; and Lutheridge Handbell Weekend.

He and his wife Judy live in Indian Trail and are members of MSLC. They have two grown children, a son and a daughter, Lucas and Mandy, who were active MSLC members in their childhood and teen years.

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Deacon WENDY
(Formerly) Deacon of discipleship

Wendy joined Morning Star in 2011 as Diaconal Minister with Children and Youth and her ministry responsibilities grew as Deacon of Discipleship.  

In August 2023, Deacon Wendy was called to serve the NC Synod of the ELCA as Candidacy Coordinator, working with candidates for rostered ministry as they go through the discernment, education, and formation process.  She concluded her call at Morning Star in September 2023.

Mark Hustedt
MINISTER with youth

Mark Hustedt says he got involved in campus youth ministry because he saw how much his older brother enjoyed doing it. Now Mark is sharing his talents as Minister with Youth at Morning Star Lutheran.

 

Mark grew up on Long Island, N.Y., and says he started looking south for college because he “hated the cold winters.” He attended and graduated from Virginia Tech, earning a B.S. in Geosciences. His full-time job is with
Geoscience Group Inc., in Charlotte.

 

Mark says his older brother became involved in college ministry at Clemson, and Mark did the same at Virginia Tech. “I made some really good friends through it all,” he says. Mark, who has also worked with Lutheran Student Ministries, says young people “have a lot of knowledge, will support one another, and are willing to be open.”

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Dr. Katie Ann McCarty
Assistant Music Director

Katie Ann grew up in Dayton, Ohio, and moved to the Charlotte area in 2008. In between, she served churches in Ohio, Illinois, and Arizona. She holds degrees in organ performance from the Oberlin Conservatory and Arizona State University, and she studied organ for a year as a Fulbright Scholar at the conservatory in Bordeaux, France.

 

Katie Ann loves spending time with her family, raising two cats, making music, gardening, and cooking. She is glad to be a part of the music ministry at Morning Star, and she’s proud to serve alongside the inclusive and caring congregation at the church.

Stephanie Bauer

OFFICE ADMINISTRATOR

Stephanie joined MSLC as the secretary in April 2019. She was born and raised in Maryland, and she has worked for about 25 years as a church secretary.  She and her husband Bill spent nearly 20 years in Orlando, Fla., where Stephanie was secretary at First Baptist Church.

 

They moved to North Carolina in 2003, because of her husband’s job, and they now live in Union County. Their son Adam also lives in the area.

 

In her spare time, Stephanie likes to travel (favorite destinations: Maryland and Arizona, to visit family), the outdoors, cooking and entertaining. She enjoys a variety of outdoor activities and also is an animal-lover who does pet care.  Stephanie says that given her choice, she’d pick the beach over the mountains, but she enjoys them both.

 

Stephanie says she has been inspired and encouraged by the staff and volunteers at Morning Star and appreciates everyone's prayers and support.

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Chrissy Stublaski

NURSERY ATTENDANT

Chrissy Stublakski has a degree in early childhood education. She has been a preschool teacher, a technology teacher, a camp leader, and Morning Star has been blessed to have her as part of our staff family for over 20 years. 

 

Chrissy is married to the love of her life, Billy. They have a daughter, Angelica, who attends MSLC and is active in youth activities. Chrissy and Billy have been active members of St. Luke's Catholic Church for 17 years. 

 

"The smiling faces, the hugs and the families. I have been blessed to be a part of Morning Star for over 20 years now! I love this place - the spirit, the fellowship and the children."

JERRY SUTTON

BUSINESS ADMINISTRATOR

Jerry Sutton has a Master’s of Science in Physical Education with additional course work in Educational Leadership and Administration from Eastern Michigan University, where he also earned his Bachelor degree.

 

Jerry served as a Community School Coordinator for 16 years, where he developed education programs. He has worked in financial planning and tax consulting, was a Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, owned and operated his own business for 38 years, and served as Business and Stewardship Manager for a mega church in Detroit Michigan prior to joining Morning Star staff.

 

Jerry has been the Business Administrator for Morning Star for 11 years.   He manages human resources, building maintenance, technology and the financial budget operations of the church, accounts payable, payroll, negotiates service contracts, prepares budget reports for the Finance team, and oversees the electronic tithing program.

 

Jerry has been married to Penny for 48 years. They have two sons and two granddaughters.  Jerry and his wife Penny attend Forrest Hills Church in Ballantyne in NC and have been active members for 11 years. 

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