Pastor Ted Laesch, Senior Pastor, was born and raised in suburban Chicago -- a die-hard Cubs fan. He's a "Preacher's Kid" and the youngest of five. He graduated from Concordia University in River Forest, Illinois with a Theological Languages major and a History minor. He met his wife, Mary, in college and they both attended Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, graduating together in 1999 (Mary with a MA, Ted with a MDiv and STM). After two years in Ghana, West Africa for internship and six years in San Jose, California serving Christ the Life Lutheran Church, Pastor Laesch was called to Chapel of the Cross in September of 2005.
Pastor Laesch and Mary have five children, the joy of their lives: Theodore, Nathaniel, Jacob, Ezekiel, and Zoe. He loves spending time with his family, reading, watching the Cubs (win or lose), thick Chicago-style pizza and Starbucks coffee.
He feels blessed to serve at Chapel of the Cross, being able to share God's love and His Word, and to work together with a talented and dedicated group of staff and lay leaders who share the passion of sharing the love of Jesus in North St. Louis County and beyond.
Email Pastor Laesch
Phone: 314.741.3737, x105
David Funke, Director of Adult Ministry, was born and raised in Colorado, and spent most of his summers through high school working on his uncle's farm, and developed a love for the mountains when he moved to Fort Collins. He graduated in 1970 from Fort Collins High School (good St. Louis need-to-know!), and in 1974 from Colorado State University with a Bachelor of Science in Beef Production. He spent 1975 in Jamaica as a volunteer with the Lutheran Council in the U.S.A. After feeling a call to church work, he entered Concordia College in St. Paul, Minnesota, where he graduated in February, 1981. It was during this time he met and married Karen. June of 1981 saw them head off to Calgary, Alberta, Canada, for his first call as a Director of Christian Education at Shepherd King Lutheran Church, and later Lutheran Triune Congregation.
In November of 1986, Dave was installed as D.C.E. at Chapel of the Cross. In 1988 his position changed to Minister of Christian Education, where his responsibilities were to oversee the education programs for all ages at Chapel. In 2009, Chapel added the new staff position of Director of Adult Ministry and called him to fill this job for the purpose of strengthening and expanding the adult ministry possibilities for the congregation. Dave's family includes his wife Karen; son Eric and his wife Linda who are living in Tanzania; son Brian, his wife Alison and their children Jack, Faith, and Blythe who live in St. Louis; and daughter Andrea who lives in Minnesota. He enjoys the outdoors, especially the Colorado mountains and lakes of northern Minnesota, taking pictures and running.
Dave's favorite Bible verse is Joshua 1:9, "Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." It has been a guide and steadying verse for him throughout his life.
Email David Funke
Phone: 314.741.3737 x107
Ryan Meyer, Director of Music Ministry, serves as the principal organist and choir director at Chapel. In addition to working with various musical ensembles, he also assists in worship planning, and enjoys composing and arranging music.
Ryan grew up in rural Nebraska and has been involved in church music most of his life. In 2004, he graduated from Concordia University in Seward, Nebraska, with a Bachelor of Music in Parish Music and accepted his call to serve at Chapel of the Cross. He and his wife, Anne, met while at Concordia and were married in June the same year. They have three young children, a son and two daughters.
Ryan enjoys spending time with his family; playing with their pug, Louie; writing, playing or listening to music; gardening and spending time outdoors; and maintaining his greenhouse (or “office” as the church calls it). Psalm 34 has always been both a favorite and a constant reminder to him of his need for God, His blessings and His faithfulness: “Taste and see that the Lord is good…” (Ps. 34:8).
Email Ryan Meyer
Phone: 314.741.3737 x108
Bill Rusnak, Director of Family Ministry, was born and raised in Ohio, and attended Lutheran schools his entire life. It is a great joy for him to use his background and experience in Lutheran Ministry in teaching, organization and administration in this position at Chapel.
Bill and his wife, Carolyn, have been at Chapel since 2009. While he's been called many things; Son, Brother, Husband, Father, Church Worker, Director, Grandpa and Uncle Bill, (just to list some of the good ones), he is most thrilled to be called a Child of God. Knowing that he is useful in His Kingdoms of Grace and Power is a trust that he treasures.
Email Bill Rusnak
Phone: 314.741.3737 x110