Pastor for Children & Family Discipleship, North (beginning Nov 29)
On Sunday, October 18, 2020, members voted to call Aaron to serve as the Pastor for Children & Family Discipleship at the North Campus. Aaron will begin on staff on November 29.
Aaron & Liz Rothermel are both natives to Minnesota (Aaron growing up in Roseville), and they both attended the University of Northwestern, St. Paul. Aaron graduated with a B.S. in Biology (pre-med). As the Lord redirected his plans from pursuing medical school to ministry, he earned an M.Div. from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. He has served on staff at Sojourn Community Church in Louisville, and he has served for more than five years as an Associate Pastor of Discipleship and Families in Wausau, Wisconsin.
Aaron & Liz have been married for more than a decade, and they are blessed to have three daughters: Lydia (5), Maria (3), and Amelia (6 months).
Aaron writes of his philosophy of ministry:
I believe that ministry is done by God and for God, in that order. God calls every believer to do the work of the ministry. God has given various gifts to teachers and shepherding leaders for the equipping of believers to serve God in their vocations and increase their effectiveness in ministering to fellow believers and reaching the lost (Ephesians 4:12).
Ministry is a whole-life approach. In our family, we make regular hospitality a priority, to both believers and non-believers. Discipleship happens in the context of a relationship, and it’s important that the home life of the pastor reflects this gospel priority of hospitality in its truest sense (1 Timothy 3:2).
A key part of my philosophy of ministry to children is driven by Jesus’ warning, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them” (Matthew 19:14). There are many ways that we can hinder a child from seeing Jesus clearly. It is absolutely vital that a child is taught the goodness of Jesus and the freeness of God’s love for us in the gospel. Childhood is a critical time in shaping a person’s understanding of God. Children and family ministry that is centered on the gospel and grounded in the Scriptures provides a foundation that will serve children their whole lives (2 Timothy 3:15).
I operate with a team-building model of ministry. I see children’s ministry and the programming it requires as a vital discipleship opportunity to invest in children’s ministry workers. I develop ministry leadership teams: teams where people with maturity in their faith and a love for kids work together, resulting in a gospel-centered ministry culture. These teams are a vehicle for me to disciple leaders of leaders. Even more important than a sound curriculum choice is the development of a gospel-centered children’s ministry culture. It is essential to have capable and safe workers who teach and manage the classroom. In addition, it is vital to have a serving culture with an infectious love of the gospel and its power to transform lives by the power of the Spirit.
I love to equip and train leaders. In children’s ministry, this looks like investing in children’s ministry workers so that they are better equipped to serve in their ministries to children and interactions with parents. It also looks like equipping parents with gospel principles for parenting, and discipling fathers to lovingly lead in their homes.
As the Lord has led us through this process to serve in ministry with Bethlehem, I am very excited to serve under the vision and direction of the leadership as we submit to God’s leading together