I was born on August 13, 1972 in Cibecue, AZ, where my father, Richard, served as a missionary to the Apache Indians. Our family moved to Wisconsin in 1976, when the senior Pastor Pagels accepted a call to Immanuel, Johnson Creek. If the Pagels name sounds familiar, it might be because my grandfather Otto Pagels was also a pastor who served at St. Paul’s, Ixonia until the Lord called him home in 1964.
My mother, Carol, taught kindergarten for twenty two years at St. Mark’s Lutheran School in Watertown, and she now enjoys spending time in retirement with her soon-to-be six grandchildren. I have two younger siblings: Lucas is an attorney in Milwaukee, and Bethany works as a reading specialist.
I received my elementary education at St. Peter’s, Helenville, WI. From there I went on to Northwestern Preparatory School (now LPS). I attended Northwestern College on the same campus and graduated in 1994. After vicaring at King of Kings Lutheran Church in Clifton Park, NY and emergency teaching at Huron Valley Lutheran High School in suburban Detroit, MI, I graduated from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in 1999.
I was assigned to St. John, Wauwatosa, WI, where I served as the outreach pastor until the Lord led me to accept the call to St. Matthew’s in 2012. In addition to my church duties, I serve on the national board of Christian Life Resources and have consulted with congregations working with the WELS Commission on Congregational Counseling.
During my first year at the seminary, a classmate introduced me to a childhood friend of his named Shannon. Our relationship blossomed, and we celebrated 21 years of marriage in August. We are the proud parents of two girls, Claire and Greta, and Tux, the world’s greatest cat.