Risen Savior Lutheran Church installed a new full-time pastor in July.
Jonah Domenichelli received a call from Risen Savior this summer after graduating from Concordia Theological Seminary in Fort Wayne, Ind., this May. He was ordained in June and was installed as the pastor for Risen Savior July 12.
Domenichelli and his wife of 23 years, Renee, found a home in Sioux Falls for them and their five children and two dogs. They moved in a couple of weeks before his installation.
“Sioux Falls is a new place for me. It’s a wonderful place,” he said. “It’s really been a wonderful community — the community here in Tea and Sioux Falls. It’s really been a great experience for our family.”
Risen Savior has gone about 10 years with part-time pastors. Domenichelli notes while each pastor loved their parishioners and parishioners loved their pastors, parishioners knew that the pastors were temporary.
With a full-time pastor, Domenichelli said the relationship between the pastor and the congregation will grow.
“That affects the relationship and the challenges that they’re in and even what they maybe do as a congregation for the community and for themselves,” he said. “This community is very important part of this church’s prayers and thoughts and well-being and concerns. They love Tea. Everybody here loves Tea.”
Domenichelli’s biggest goal is for the congregation to know that he is there to serve them faithfully week in and week out, day in and day out by both meeting their needs, teaching, preaching, serving and providing them with word and sacrament ministries.
“They need to know that there’s no question that I’m always here for them and available,” he said.
He also wants to provide teaching and learning for adults and children and provide outreach for the community.
When Domenichelli was in seminary, he never dreamed he would be finishing school during a global pandemic and then starting his role as a pastor in one. Fellowship aspects of church have changed. However, he said some things remain the same.
“You’re still serving God’s people. You’re still providing them with God’s word and God’s sacraments. You still do all those things,” he said.
Domenichelli is grateful to have been called to Tea. It has been a great place for his family.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better place to be called to. I give thanks to God for such wonderful blessings and this congregation,” he said.