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A Place for Everyone

Judy Gross is no stranger to leadership roles, including her career as an elementary teacher.   She thanks her mother, Louise Martin, for inspiring her to build personal relationships in the church and serving as a role model in a wide variety of activities. Judy shared those interests with her mother, but she also went on to be, for example, a Circle Leader and the first Woman Council President at St. Paul Lutheran.

“It is true that the more you give, the more you get,” Judy says.  She especially enjoys being part of the Visitation Committee, where she visits nursing homes and shut-ins as well as delivers roses to those in the congregation over the age of 80.  Spending time with others and getting to know their stories is an important part of her life-long relationship building.

Before COVID, she and her sisters, along with Janet Doherty, annually organized and hosted the Crèche Festival, where members of the community enthusiastically came together to share the Christmas story through viewing culturally diverse Nativity scenes and reading about how and where they were obtained and what special meaning each had.  While this outreach currently is not viable, Judy says that when that happens, there are things you can continue to do.”  Now a nonagenarian, she remains a member of the Bethany Guild, which serves receptions after funerals, finds fellowship and Bible Study in her ELCA Circle (after more than 63 years), sets up the altar before worship, helps make peanut butter eggs, and serves on the Visitation Committee. 

I believe St. Paul is a friendly church,” she declares, and that there is a place for everyone.”