Staff

Pastor Jason Wahlstrom

Senior Pastor
E-mail Pastor Jason Wahlstrom

serves as Senior Pastor of Holy Nativity. He has previously served congregations in Lake Benton and Blaine, both in Minnesota. Prior to ordination, Pastor Jason attended the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago and the University of Chicago. He currently lives in Crystal with his wife Ann, two children, and a dog.

Pastor Jason takes great joy in teaching and preaching and especially appreciates the people of Holy Nativity and their willingness to learn and explore new opportunities to serve our community. He is excited to see where the future will take the congregation as we continue to work at serving our neighbors.

In his spare time, Pastor Jason enjoys watching the Twins and Cubs, cooking, playing video games, and collecting and listening to records on vinyl.

Pastor Ashley Updegraff

Associate Pastor
E-mail Pastor Ashley Updegraff

Pastor Ashley Updegraff serves as the Associate Pastor of Holy Nativity. Previously, she has served congregations in central Illinois and in Rogers, MN. She did her undergraduate studies at the University of Iowa (Go, Hawkeyes!) and her seminary studies at Luther Seminary in St. Paul. Pastor Ashley loves teaching, preaching, and modeling a faith that matters for everyday life. She enjoys walking alongside the people of Holy Nativity and helping them to find God’s presence—and Jesus’s hope—in their joys and sorrows.

Pastor Ashley works closely with families and children of all ages, and believes the church is called to partner with families to raise healthy, faith-filled kids. She’s intentional and creative in connecting with others, and can’t wait to meet you!

When Pastor Ashley isn’t working, you’ll find her with her big, blended family, reading a book, enjoying the outdoors, or watching HGTV.

Iver Hubert

Director of Music Ministry
E-mail Iver Hubert

Holy Nativity’s Director of Music, Iver Hubert, graduated from Concordia College in Moorhead, MN with a Bachelor’s degree emphasizing in choral conducting and composition. While there, he studied conducting and composition with Dr. René Clausen and Dr. Daniel Moe, and voice with David Hamilton.

As an accomplished chorister, Iver has sung under the direction of Michael Smith in the Brainerd High School A Cappella Choir, Dr. Rene Clausen in the Concordia Choir, Phillip Brunelle in The Plymouth Music Series (now currently Vocal Essence), and recorded and toured nationally with all three groups.

As Holy Nativity’s Director of Music, Iver’s duties include directing the Nativity Choir, Nativity Bells, planning worship services (including hymn selection), and arranging for special music/musicians and music events throughout the year.

Lisa Baker

Organist & Communications Coordinator
E-mail Lisa Baker

Lisa received her Bachelor of Applied Science degree in Psychology from the University of Minnesota – Duluth, and her Bachelor of Music degree (emphasis in Organ Performance) from the University of Wisconsin – Superior. Her organ teachers were Dr. Justin Rubin (UMD) and Dr. Norma Stevlingson (UWS). She also completed a Web Design Certificate at Century College (White Bear Lake, MN) in 2008. Lisa has served Holy Nativity as Organist/Accompanist since 2004, and Communications Coordinator since 2006. Her roles at Holy Nativity include accompanying worship on piano, synthesizer and organ, accompanying the Nativity Choir, managing the church website, social media and digital sign.

She loves composing music, reading, creating content for her popular local family blog, and of course, spending time with family and friends.

Linda Lien

Congregational Care Coordinator & Funeral Coordinator
E-mail Linda Lien

Since leaving her 27 year career as an Executive Secretary with Prudential, Linda took on her dream job and became Coordinator of Parish Life at Holy Nativity in 2009. The job title has since been switched to Congregational Care Coordinator which sums up exactly how she feels about her position. “I really care about the people of Holy Nativity. They are like my family and this is my second home.”

Friends and family are all-important to Linda and her favorite times are when she is with her 2 children, their spouses, and 4 grandchildren. She also enjoys spending time at her place in Nisswa, MN in the summer, reading, playing bingo, and loves watching Christmas movies!

Kristen Chamberlain

Sunday School Director
E-mail Kristen Chamberlain

Kristen received her Bachelor of Science in Mass Communication and Speech Communication in 2001 and her PhD in Communication Studies in 2007; both from North Dakota State University. After graduating from NDSU, Kristen and her husband, Mark, moved from Fargo to the big city! She is currently an Associate Professor in Communication Studies at Augsburg University in Minneapolis. At Augsburg, Kristen teaches classes in Intercultural Communication, Media and Popular Culture, Environmental Communication, and Public Communication. Teaching is her absolute favorite thing, which is why she also loves teaching Sunday School. She has been a Sunday School teacher since 2014 and has been the Director of Sunday School since 2019. Kristen’s predominant area of research is on the intersections of science and environment, but she is also endlessly fascinated by tv and movies. She loves to read, especially if she has a cup of coffee and a cat on her lap. You can find her on Instagram at @kristenchamberlain and on Twitter @chamberlainka.

Wendy Grimes

Youth Ministry Associate
E-mail Wendy Grimes

Wendy graduated from Augsburg University in 2006 with a degree in Elementary Education. Rather than teaching, she decided to be home full time with her family. She feels fortunate to have been home with both her daughter and son and also provided daycare for her niece and nephew when they were small.

Wendy grew up attending Holy Nativity and was both confirmed and married there. She became a part of the youth ministry team in 2005. She remained an active volunteer with our youth and has helped to grow the program to the success that it is today. In 2016 she took on the position of Youth Ministry Associate. Her favorite part of her job is that she is able to make connections and develop relationships with the extraordinary kids we have here at Holy Nativity!

In her down time, Wendy’s favorite things to do are to spend time with her husband, children, family and friends…especially if it is around a campfire or at a lake! If that isn’t possible she’ll settle for a good book in front of the fireplace at home next to her dog and cat.

Kara Holt

Financial Coordinator

Kara graduated from Luther College in 1986 with a double major in Accounting and Computer Science. She worked for Thrivent Financial in various accounting areas from 1986-1998, briefly moved to Dallas to work for a start-up mortgage loan servicing company, and now does accounting consulting work for several clients. She also has real estate and contractor’s licenses, manages a rental property in St. Paul, and plans to buy and fix up houses in the future. Kara, her husband Bruce and their three boys joined Holy Nativity in 2010 and she became the Financial Coordinator in 2014.

Tom Wiblishauser

Custodial Care & Activity Set-up

Tom Wiblishauser earned his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration-Accounting Program from the University of Minnesota and 5 years later with industry experience earned a C.M.A. (Certificate of Management Accounting). He completed the Vocational Teaching Sequence at the U. of M. and has taught Math at Hennepin Technical College for 35 years to the present where he is an adjunct Customized Math Instructor and part-time TRIO math, chemistry, and physics tutor stationed at Cooper High School and Robbinsdale Middle School.

Tom currently authors and judges the SKILLS USA State Technical and Trade Math Competitions for both college and high school students. Since 2013, Tom serves as the part-time custodian for the church and Accountant for the Holy Nativity Christian Child Care Center. Tom and his wife Karen support senior fitness and members with mobility challenges at Holy Nativity. They enjoy biking and dancing.

Tawn Hanson

Wedding Coordinator

Amy Laite

Sunday Nursery Coordinator