February 1, 2020
We are pleased to welcome to the North American Lutheran Church (NALC) staff, effective February 1, the Rev. Phillip Gagnon. Pastor Gagnon will be serving as assistant to the bishop for domestic mission and discipleship. He has served two congregations since his ordination in 1997 and comes to us with 23 years of pastoral ministry experience. His first parish was Golden Valley Lutheran Church in Viking, Alberta, Canada. Most recently, he served at St. Albert Evangelical Lutheran Church, St. Albert, Alberta, where he pastored for nearly 18 years. He and his wife, Patricia, live in St. Albert, and have three children, Elise, Elias and Sophie, each in their twenties.
Pastor Gagnon was dean of the Canadian Mission District for four years, was involved in the creation of the constitution of the NALC — Canada Section, and has served on the NALS Board of Regents from its inception. He has taught at the Onesimos Nesib Seminary in Aira, Western Ethiopia on the topic of exorcism and the occult; and world religions and new religious groups at the Canadian Lutheran Bible Institute in Camrose, Alberta from 1998-2007. Since 1989, he has taught seminars on various new religious groups (cults) in Western Canada, California, and Seoul, South Korea. He has also written a book on evil and exorcism from a Lutheran perspective, entitled Deliver Us From Evil.
Pastor Gagnon’s hobbies including reading and art. Since an early age, he has enjoyed pencil drawings, pen and ink (pointillism), and, in the last few years, has especially enjoyed watercolor and acrylics. Always seeking ways to learn and improve his painting skills, he enjoys the creative nature of art and finds rest and peace in using his God-given talents.
On the NALC staff, Pastor Gagnon will be working with the Missions Team, led by the Rev. Dr. Gemechis Buba. Focusing his efforts in domestic missions, he will work with Jenny Brockman and the Rev. Brad Hales to support efforts to plant new churches and provide congregational renewal. In the area of discipleship, he will be working with the Life-to-Life Discipleship Team, chaired currently by the North American Lutheran Seminary (NALS) president, the Rev. Dr. Eric Riesen. Pastor Gagnon’s work in this area will be to support pastors, lay leaders and congregations interested in intentionally developing disciple-making cultures within their congregations. In each of these areas, domestic mission and disciple making, Pastor Gagnon’s presence on our staff will give much-needed support to efforts that are central to the values, witness and work of the NALC.
The added benefit with the addition of Pastor Gagnon to our staff comes simply from the fact that he lives in Canada. His presence on Canadian soil will enable us to more effectively serve our Canadian churches and give a more tangible expression to our continental identity. Along with the inherent benefits from his presence in Canada, Pastor Phil has also led 15 mission trips into Mexico. In the process, he has developed strong relationships with a network of congregations and pastors in the southern part of North America. Our hope is that Pastor Gagnon joining our staff will enable us to more effectively support our Canadian churches, further develop relationships with our sisters and brothers in Mexico and strengthen our continental efforts to bear witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
We are excited to welcome Pastor Gagnon to our staff and pray that God will use our efforts in the North American Lutheran Church to further the work of His kingdom through us. Welcome to Pastor Phil Gagnon!
For more information, contact the Rev. Andrew Ames Fuller, director of communications for the North American Lutheran Church and an ordained deacon in the Anglican Church in North America.