Johnson Ordination

Rev. Robin Johnson completes her journey to ordination.

On August 27, 2023 at 2:00 p.m. on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, Rev. Robin Johnson of Wilmington, NC was ordained to the Ministry of Word and Sacrament with Holy Communion. The ordination included a number of clergy who assisted her on her journey to ordination, and several others made the trip to Southport to help her celebrate.

Rev. Dr. Timothy Smith, bishop of the North Carolina Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA), served as presiding minister. Johnson’s mentor and former pastor, Rev. David Nelson, currently Assistant Pastor at Shepherd of the Sea Lutheran Church in Garden City, SC, was the preaching minister.

Rev. Jason Huebner and Rev. Wade Brinkopf were also included in the ceremony and received the first communion of Rev. Johnson’s career as an ordained minister. Carol Rubow led the Prayers of Intercession.

Pastor Robin invited people close to her to serve as lectors reading the scriptures of the day; her longtime friend Holly Little, her stepdaughter Vicki Wilson, and her eldest grandson Landon Gunn.

Pastor Dave’s sermon centered on his years of mentoring Johnson as she continually questioned her calling while pursuing her studies and completing her “wild and surprising too-good-not-to-be-true story.” He also affirmed that although he soothed away her many “Am I crazy?” queries over the years, he could finally say yes, she was and is crazy with her “dare to imagine story.” He summarized with the statement that the church ordains so we can continue to tell this story, inspiring others toward the same journey.

Following the sermon, the ordinand was presented by Rev. Will Layton, Robin’s internship supervisor and pastor of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Bellevue, IA, as well as St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in LaMotte, IA. Johnson’s husband Eldon Stoehr and grandson Hayden Gunn draped her with her stole.

The choir directed by Lois Moore sang Whirlwind Spirit, accompanied by Karen Sirian. A lovely reception with cake, desserts, and iced tea followed the service. Click here to view photos of the event.

Robin graduated this year from Wartburg Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa. She will be the Pastor at Trinity Landing retirement community and Trinity Grove care center in Wilmington, NC both of which are ministries of Lutheran Services Carolinas (LSC).

LSC is a nonprofit health and human services organization providing skilled nursing care, rehabilitation, assisted living, and retirement options to seniors in North Carolina, as well as foster care, adoption, mental health services, refugee resettlement services, disaster case management, and residential care for people with disabilities in North and South Carolina.

Back Row from the left: Rev. James Lockley, Rev. Jeffery Ingold, Rev. David Nelson, Rev. Nicholas Giannatasio, Rev. Jonathan Conrad
Middle Row: Bishop Timothy Smith, Rev. Robin Johnson, Rev. Will Layton, Rev. Jason Huebner
Front Row: Rev. Wade Brinkopf, Rev. Louise Hilbert, Rev. Audrey Pederson

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