­Pastor Mary E. Zupansic


Nancy Jackson, Office Manager

Nancy manages so much for our church office, including keeping the office running as three congregations blended into one. She began with Atonement Lutheran Church in January 2008 and believes God always has a plan and she is meant to be here at Peace. Nancy formerly worked at the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. She is married to Randy, and they have four adult children and six grandchildren. Nancy and Randy attend Kumler United Methodist Church. Nancy is currently chair of the Administrative Council. Randy serves on trustees. Peace has become Nancy’s second church family and she enjoys her time here!

Elena Dockter, Administrative Assistant

Elena joined Peace Lutheran Church in 2016. A few of her administrative tasks include attendance tracking, Friday email distribution, web calendar maintenance, and special projects. She's regularly in the office Monday and Friday afternoons and is happy to assist in any way possible. Elena lives in Chatham with her husband, Jason (he really is Dr. Dockter), three lively daughters, a yappy dog, a lazy cat, a hyper hamster, and an incredibly hardy fish.

Jan Ambrose, Sunday Traditional Service Coordinator

Jan grew up in Chicago and moved to Springfield in 1972. She earned a bachelor’s degree in music education at Western Illinois University. She’s found a new passion for traveling since retiring as music educator from Springfield Public School District after 39 years of teaching children. Jan was music director at former Faith Lutheran Church, where she had many responsibilities. She enjoys spending time with family, which includes my husband Allen, two grown children, three grandchildren, and two family dog pets.

Brenda Peck, organist

Our church organist since 1991 (formerly with Atonement), Brenda has been playing for churches since age 12. She previously taught elementary school music in Chatham, as well as teaching private voice and piano lessons on and off since high school and serving as an adjudicator for contests. She has also served as choir director in the past. Brenda said the Lord gave her the musical abilities to be part of her ministry and testimony. Her husband, Don, is retired from the state and serves as a minister at Loami United Methodist Church. They have three sons: one who lives in Chatham, one in central Illinois and one in Connecticut. When she’s not playing or practicing at Peace, she enjoys painting, crafting, biking, solving crosswords or you might find her at home where she always has a puzzle out on the table.

Pamela Scott, Lay Minister

Pamela has been a church musician since junior high. Raised United Methodist, a Lutheran choir directing job introduced her to Lutheran service liturgy. She promptly fell in love and never left. "The melodies and words of the liturgy burrow into our hearts and minds during worship and follow us home, reminding us of God’s constant love." She enrolled in Synodically Authorized Ministry (SAM) training to learn more about Lutheran theology. Completing this Lay Ministry education program of the ELCA has enabled her to assist with pulpit supply when needed. Pamela has degrees in music and theology. She is blessed with husband Bill Spindel, who cooks, and shelter rescue Lyddy, who barks. In her spare time she works at the UIS Library, accompanies the UIS Chorus, and reads all the mysteries she can find.

Cheryl Schirring, Lay Minister

A lifelong student, Cheryl has an impressive background not only in education but also in self-taught hobbies. She has a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s in 19th century social history. She helped start the volunteer program at Lincoln’s New Salem where she demonstrated spinning and open-hearth cooking. She enjoys cooking with “a recipe as a suggestion.” She has learned to embroider, knit and crochet. Cheryl is retired from the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum (formerly the Illinois State Historical Library) after 44 years in the manuscripts section. A few years ago, she completed three years of training with the Synodically Authorized Ministry program with the ELCA to become a licensed lay minister.

Bonnie Froiland, Substitute organist

Bonnie and music go way back. As a child, she took both piano and organ lessons, though her aunt steered her away from a career in music. She worked for more than 20 years at the Sorling Law Office as a legal assistant before her retirement. Bonnie was assistant organist at Grace Lutheran and full-time organist at Luther Memorial for 30 years. She is married to John, and between them, they have five children, nine grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Bonnie has enjoyed playing for joy and solace all these years, and Peace is blessed by her gift!

Amy Denney, Communications/Evangelism Coordinator

Amy grew up in a Lutheran school and church, and has been writing since the time she could hold a pen. Her master’s degree is in Public Affairs Reporting at University of Illinois at Springfield, reflecting also her lifelong curiosity of politics. She assists Peace with branding, communication, events and evangelism. Her other “jobs” are teaching Holy Yoga (including Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. at Peace) and wellness coaching. In her spare time, she loves going on mission trips, writing, reading and theater (you’ll find her not on stage but in the audience cheering on her family in their latest performance). She lives in Springfield with husband, Dan, and two busy teens, Abby and Ryker, and toddler Tatum, who thinks she’s the circus master.

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