April 2018  
Bible Search
Interim Pastor

Rev. Chip Borgstadt

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Originally from Eastern Iowa, Pastor Chip has lived in Nebraska his adult life. He holds two degrees in Education from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and is an alum of Pacific Lutheran Seminary in Berkeley, California. His ministry calls have included youth ministry at St. Timothy’s in Omaha, Assistant to the Bishop of the Nebraska Synod, United Lutheran in Scribner and St. John’s in Ridgely, Alma Lutheran in Mead, St. Andrew’s Lutheran in Lincoln, St. Mark’s Lutheran in Valley and Resurrection in Gretna. He taught Youth & Family Ministry at Midland for 8-1/2 years.

Pastor Chip is married to Rita, a Nebraska native and they have two grown children. Katy, a teacher, is married to Adam, a Coast Guard helicopter pilot and they live in Traverse City, Michigan, with their 6-year-old son, Avry, and 4-year-old daughter, Lauryn. Jon lives in Omaha and is a retail sales person at the North Face store in Gretna and Duluth Trading in Omaha. Ask Pastor Chip about his two dogs, Izzy and Daisy.

Pastor loves to travel, cook and develop curriculum-focused websites. He has written for many publishers, most recently for the Augsburg Adult Bible Study series. He usually has chocolate in his office, which he gladly shares.

Pastor Chip will serve as the Transition Pastor at Salem. This includes the time to develop the congregational profile and engage in the search for the right pastor to lead Salem in the future.


Administrative Assistant

Verna Kimball

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My name is Verna Kimball, I am 56 years old.  I was born and raised in Fremont, Ne.  I am a member of First Lutheran Church.  I was married for 27 years to Patrick Kimball (now deceased).  I have a daughter, Amanda, that is 25 years old who is now attending Metropolitan Community College and will be graduating in the fall of 2016.  I have a grandson Kolby that is 7 years old who keeps me busy going to all his activities with school and sporting events.  I like getting together and spending time with family and friends playing cards and enjoying the outdoors.


Kathy Wirsen

I've been the bookkeeper for Salem since July 2015, and I enjoy working with the staff here.  My background is agriculture.  I am currently the third generation owner of a farm west of Kennard.  My son is responsible for the farming, and I am responsible for the livestock.  I lamb out approximately 60-70 ewes during the winter months and feed out all the lambs for slaughter.  I also buy additional feeder lambs to add to my home-raised lambs.

My son, Nathan, also has a house on the farm, and I also have a grandson, Cameron, who spends half of his time with his dad.  I never realized how much fun grandchildren could be until Cameron was born.  Since his birth, he has become the main focus of his daddy, and I enjoy spending as much time as I can with him.

Coordinator of Music and Worship

Jeff Hoffman

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Jeff Hoffman is a native of West Point, Nebraska, where he served as organist at Grace Lutheran and St. Paul Lutheran churches. He attended Midland Lutheran College in Fremont, Nebraska and served First Baptist Church as organist. He continued his education at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln studying organ performance.


Jeff has served as Director of Music at Salem Lutheran Church in Fremont, on the staff of First Lutheran Church in Fremont directing the Bell Choir and worship ensembles, and as an accompanist for the Fremont Public Schools. Mr. Hoffman also served as Director of Music at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Fremont, the Archdiocese of Omaha as an organist at St. Cecilia Cathedral and Accompanist and Administrator for the Archdiocesan Children’s Choir. Jeff served as Executive Director for John C. Fremont Days for ten years and is currently Director of Music at Salem Lutheran Church and St. James’ Episcopal Church’s Academy for Sacred Art and Music.


He has served in leadership positions on the board of directors of the Omaha Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, Friends of Keene Memorial Library, Fremont Area Art Association Board, Jefferson House Advisory Board, and active in the Fremont Area Chamber of Commerce as a member of the Membership and Professional Development Councils and chair of their Youth Leadership Academy. 


Little Saints Director

Lily Bowman

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Lily Bowman is the Director at Salem Little Saints! She has graduated from Southeast Community College in Lincoln with a degree in Early Childhood Education. She has worked in childcare centers since May 2007 and has recently been the Assistant Director at Salem Little Saints.

Lily is originally from Hayes Center, NE and now lives in Fremont. She loves being outdoors and spending time with her family and friends!

Assist. Director

Sarah Pehrson


Hello!  I am so happy to be back here at Salem. I am now living in Omaha with my husband, Jacob, and our dog, Max.  My parents live in Fremont so it is nice to be able to visit them after work. I also have four brothers that live in the Fremont/Omaha area. I look forward to each and every day with the kids!

Children's Ministry Director

Sandy Terry

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Sandy Terry is a fourth generation member of Salem Lutheran Church.  She and her husband have two grown children.  Sandy retired from the Fremont Public Schools in 2010; served 2 ½ years as Director of Christian Education at First Lutheran Church in Blair and is currently the part-time Receptionist for the Nebraska Synod ELCA.

Sandy received her undergraduate degree from College of Saint Mary in Omaha and her certification as a Parish Ministry Associate through the Nebraska Synod in 2008.

Sandy enjoys leading the children of Salem in their spiritual journey through Bible story and activities.  She is excited to be back volunteering as Director of Children’s Ministry in her home congregation.

Adult Choir Director

Rosie Parde

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Rosie and her husband Les have been members of Salem Lutheran twice.  First from 1972-1977, and then again from 1982 to current date.  She began her work at Salem by working initially with the Children's Choir which later expanded to the addition of the Adult Choir.  She has also been a member of the praise teams since blended services have been a part of Salem's ministry.  Rosie taught vocal music in public schools having retired in the Spring of 2012.   Education includes degrees from Dana College and UNL in Music Education.  She has also taken various continuing education courses from the University of Northern Colorado and the Vandercook School of Music in Chicago, IL.  Rosie and Les have three grown children, all of whom now have families of their own.  The grandchildren have been blessings to both parents and grandparents.

Ministry through music is powerful.  Singing religious songs is just one of the ways that people worship.  For many, it is the message through song that their own lives are touched in very meaningful ways.  Music is such a powerful means of worship in and of itself.   Music has a way of connecting to individuals in a way that often cannot even be explained, but seems to touch the very heart of each person in very special ways.

Salem is always looking for more people who love to sing to the glory of God.  Our adult choir rehearses on Wednesday evenings.  We welcome any new members who love to sing for the glory of God.  We would love to see the choir expand with having more members.  Rehearsals are fun at the same time of being very productive.

Rosie also serves in the capacity of sharing music with the Sparks program during the school year, teaching and having the children perform music with the congregation at least once a month. 

Head Custodian

Dale Tharp

Dale is 54 years old and has been married for 33 years to his wife, Sherri.  They have lived in Fremont most of their lives. They have 3 children. Their daughter, Melody and her husband Tom Scott, 2 sons, Devin and Brandon.  Devin lives on a place near Wahoo. He works in South Dakota for James River Implement, Brandon and his fiancé Ally live and work in Fremont for S2 Sanitation.  Brandon is also a member of the Army Reserve.  Sherri and Dale also had a fourth child, a little girl Emily Rose, who died from SIDS back in 1991.  She was 10 weeks old.

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