Amy Chalupnik was officially ordained Feb. 14 at Faith Lutheran Church in Becker in front of fellow colleagues, family, friends and former associates and co-workers.
Bishop Jon Anderson of the SW Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church was the day’s preacher and the event featured musicians from Chalupnik’s home congregation as well as representatives from faith including children and youth that spoke during the installation rite.
Chalupnik, 42, is now the first and only woman pastor in the Becker community. She has been serving at FLC since September as a pastoral associate and started as associate pastor officially Feb. 1. She and her family of four live in Buffalo.
Chalupnik is a graduate of Luther Seminary in St. Paul (2013) and earned her master of divinity. While attending the seminary she interned at the Como Park Lutheran Church in St. Paul for four years. Prior to her commitment to seminary, she worked at KleinBank from 1997-2010.
Chalupnik grew up in Corcoran and when she was 12, she and her family took a trip to the Middle East and visited many Biblical sites in Palestine and Jerusalem and it was then she says her eyes were opened.
“That experience opened my eyes to a lot of things and deepened my faith,” she said. “At that age and time I told myself I was going to be a pastor and began exploring the idea of ministry.”
Chalupnik says her aspirations for serving the church waned during her teen years and when she met her husband-to-be in the middle 90s, the future looked to be in the secular world as they settled down and started a family.
But at the age of 34, Amy says she received the call from God again and she listened to His urging. Eight years ago she began her call to a congregation and applied for the seminary.
One of the areas of service Chalupnik hopes to grow as pastor at FLC is the social and community action ministries of the church.
“I want to strengthen the usefulness of the non-profits in the area including Faith In Action and the Food Shelf,’ Chalupnik said. “I’d like to bring a food bank to the area and really serve the region and be a vital part of the Becker, Clear Lake and Big Lake communities.”
Chalupnik is also excited to see how her service as a female pastor impacts the area and hopes women of all ages and denominations seek her out for counsel and/or personal or spiritual support.
“I hope to bring more openness to the church communities in the area and I invite any woman who needs another woman to talk to to contact me if they need a chat,” she said. “Our doors are always open.”
Faith Lutheran Church is located at 11755 Sherburne Ave. and the Senior Pastor is Richard Wehrs.
Chalupnik is married to Jason and they have two boys, Tommy (13) and Danny (12).