Staff & Leadership
Rev. Jim Yoder, Interim Pastor
My name is Jim Yoder. The Leadership Team for Church of the Redeemer has invited me to become the Interim Pastor for the Congregation. Having met with them twice, I accepted the position with great joy.
According to Micah, God has already laid out for us the goodness of being part of God’s family. The people understand the abundance of God’s love. At the same time, being part of God’s family comes with some expectations.
When I stop to think about it, from childhood through the present, I have always had chores. As a tyke the duties were picking up my toys. The participation expectations of family life grew in a parallel process with each life-stage. As the dimensions of family expanded, so did the requirements. The same is true of God’s family.
And then Micah relates three basic tasks. He states them simply and succinctly. As soon as the tasks leave his mouth, the simplicity and succinctness dissipate. The verbs are do, love, and walk. These action words do not imply expectation about becoming part of the family. We are already there. The implication emphasizes remaining part of the family. The same chores we did to get an allowance.
Doing justice means remaining open to experiences rather than holding fast to one belief system. It is about doing the right thing simply because it’s the right thing to do. Loving mercy is showing kindness in all things. It’s about applying the same forgiveness and absolution to others as God has done for us. Walking humbly is being attentive to God’s presence and action in our lives. It has to do with discernment of the Spirit. Although the overarching plan for our work together has not been clearly established, the Leadership Team has determined a primary goal. It is that of learning congregational ministry with a part time pastor. This interim period has the freedom to experiment with new ideas
This is where the entire congregation joins in – we need to evaluate new ideas from the perspective of God’s requirements. Together we can do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with God. - Many blessings, Jim Yoder, Interim Pastor
Jeannette Juhala, Organist
Jeannette is the Organist and Bell Choir director at Church of the Redeemer. A native of South Dakota, Jeannette lives in Hershey with her husband Dan and children Eric and Heather and their families, including 2 granddaughters. Jeannette is employed by Giant Foods.
She is involved in the liturgical arts ministry of the church and enjoys spending time with her four dogs.
Dr. Michael Wojdylak, Choir Director
Dr. Michael Wojdylak
Michael leads a double life both as a dentist in his own private practice and as a musician who composes, performs and teaches at Lebanon Valley College as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Music. He directs the College Choir at Lebanon Valley College and is the music director for Voices of Palmyra, a forty-voice community choir that rehearses and offers several concerts annually at Church of the Redeemer.
Dr. Wojdylak earned his B.S. degree at the Pennsylvania State University, 1977; M.AGR., 1983; D.D.S.,University of Maryland, 1987; B.A., Lebanon Valley College, 1997; and M.M., Marywood University, 2003.
Michael has created compositions for performance at Church of the Redeemer as well as various churches across the country. He is an accomplished pianist, organist, director, composer and vocalist.
In his spare time, Mr. Wojdylak enjoys the outdoors, especially gardening and taking care of his menagerie of pets. He is always looking for musicians to write for and people to audition for his choirs.
Maryann Bruce, Church Office Manager
Maryann Bruce worked at Lancaster Theological Seminary for almost eight years holding the position of Assistant to the Dean and Assistant to the Director of Field Education. Maryann is also currently the Church Secretary at Salem UCC in downtown Harrisburg and at Faith UCC New Cumberland.
Born and raised in the St. Petersburg area of Florida, she graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor's degree in Geography and met her husband all in the same weekend.
David and Maryann were married aboard the Starlite Majesty in Clearwater Beach and moved to Pennsylvania in 2000 after visiting a friend in the area the year before. "We loved the area so much that on the flight home we decided to move here!" Maryann began working immediately for Lancaster Seminary and David taught 6th grade at Eastern York Middle School.
Maryann and David had their son, Jackson, in 2003 and shortly after David became an 8th grade English teacher at Catherine Hall, Milton Hershey School. David is now a 6th grade Social Studies teacher after serving as an Assistant Principal at MHS.