Introducing our elders…John Stas

I got a lot of great feedback on the posts about elders from a couple weeks back, so I’ve decided to introduce you to one of them each week.  As our church has grown, we don’t expect our elders to be able to connect with everyone personally, but we do think it could be helpful for you to learn a little bit about them and put a face with a name.

John Stas is the team leader for our elders.  Here is his story…

I have been married to my best friend Jo Anne for almost 25 years and we have five children and one son-in-law. Our oldest Megan graduated from Purdue Calumet in May and is married to Andrew Umlauf. She and her husband live in Indianapolis. Our second child John (J.P.) is a sophomore at Purdue Calumet but will be transferring to IUPUI in Indianapolis this fall. Next, we have Jessi who will be a junior in high school and Taylor who will be a freshman. Our youngest Jennie, will start 3rd grade in the fall.

Suncrest has been my family’s church home for thirteen years and I have been serving as an elder since 2003. I have been a Christian for 20 years and a Christ follower for 12 years. I distinguish between the two because Christ follower denotes an active role, whereas Christian can sometimes mean a passive state. I have been in both positions at times on my spiritual journey.

There have been different people throughout my journey who have influenced me spiritually but the common denominator between them is that they were people who motivated me to deepen my relationship with Christ. Take the next step. Whatever that step may be.  Since I have been at Suncrest one of those people has been Dan Smith. Dan has been an example to me in both his personal and business life of what a true Christ follower looks like.  Dan exemplifies what a giving, honest, loyal person is and I am blessed to call him my friend. I think Suncrest is full of people like Dan who unassumingly go about their lives influencing people for Christ by their example which is one of the reasons why I love this place.

Another reason I love Suncrest is because of the ministry focus.  I believe in Suncrest’s ministry because I think they “get it.” By that I mean the Great Commission where Jesus commands us to go into all the world and make disciples. At Suncrest they truly believe that the church exists for the people who are not there yet. Suncrest is outward focused but at the same time nurtures the people who call Suncrest home through relevant teaching and small groups. The ministry focus is centered on reaching people so they can know there is a God who loves them and wants a relationship with them. Whether that is in St. John or across the country in New England or around the world in Liberia South Africa, Suncrest purposefully focuses on changing lives.

It has been a pleasure sharing a little about myself with you. I hope it has helped you put a story to one of the names you may have heard around Suncrest. One last thing I want to leave you with that may surprise you. I have a great dislike (fear) of rodents. It doesn’t matter whether they are domestic (hamsters) or wild (mice) I hate rodents, and I have the broken broom handles to prove it! Stop me and ask about it sometime.



~ by Greg Lee on June 5, 2008.

One Response to “Introducing our elders…John Stas”

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