Director of Christian Education

Deaconess Debbie Rank Speer
(708) 848-4741
ChristianEd@GoodShepherdLC.org

The first question I am usually asked is, “What is a deaconess anyway?” The quick answer is that a Lutheran deaconess is a woman who is called, trained and set apart for service. For me, this service is lived out in a congregation setting, currently here at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church as the Director of Christian Education. I did my education/formation at Valparaiso University, a year of internship in Fort Wayne, Indiana, and was consecrated as a deaconess in 1999.

My ministry at Good Shepherd focuses on faith education and spiritual growth for all ages. I lead our Sunday School, Confirmation ministry and youth program, coordinate our summer Vacation Bible School, and offer support and resources to our many member-led programs. I am passionate about encouraging others in what God has called them to do and to create opportunities for mentoring between age groups.

What makes my work so great is that I get to do crafts with kids, go bowling with middle schoolers, ride horses with high schoolers and camp with college students. At the same time, I am able to talk with parents about the challenges of parenting today, explore the gift of being a woman of faith with other women, and volunteer at a food bank side by side with people of every generation. I truly love what I do!