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The Online Bridge: Spring 2005
Issue 11, May 2005

Dr. Edna Grenz (Sturhahn) :
Vancouver, BC

During my time at NABC I sensed a call into some kind of Christian ministry. I thought I could go into Christian Ed. or be a pastor’s wife. That year I also applied and was accepted into God’s Volunteers (it later became New Day). There I met Stan Grenz, who later became my husband. After we were married in 1971, I began my studies at the University of Colorado, completing a B.Mus Ed. and then teaching in a public school while Stan was a youth pastor and attended seminary, so I became the pastor’s wife that I had been called to be while at NABC.

After our time there we moved to Munich, Germany where Stan did his doctoral studies. From there we went to Rowandale Baptist Church, in Winnipeg where Stan was pastor and then we moved to Sioux Falls, SD where Stan taught at NAB Seminary for 9 years. I was primarily a wife and mom, but during those years I was able to begin a more active ministry in church again, first directing church choirs, and then as a part time minister of worship. I also completed my Masters degree in music at the University of South Dakota.
       

It was upon moving to Vancouver in 1990 that the calling that I had sensed 20 years earlier at NABC came to full fruition. I became a part of the pastoral staff at First Baptist Church, Vancouver as Minister of Worship. I have ministered there for the past 14½ years.

I have also had the privilege of being a part of the Baptist World Alliance on the Worship and Spirituality commission and as a facilitator at worship conferences in India and Nicaragua. Along with Stan, I have had teaching opportunities in other parts of the world. These opportunities and my observations of worship services in many places, have increased both my awareness of the need for teaching in the area of music and worship, and my passion for designing theologically sound worship services.

       

Several years ago I was made aware of the Institute for Worship Studies founded by Robert Webber, and I am now completing my Doctor of Worship studies at that institution.

It has been very challenging to balance study with church ministry and family, but I am so grateful for the opportunity to learn and grow. There are opportunities ahead that will continue to stretch me, as I hope to do some writing in the area of worship.

As an NABC student of 1969-70 I never dreamed of the opportunities and responsibilities that God would give me. Many times I have had to be prodded by the Holy Spirit and Stan.

God has been faithful to us through every challenge of life. There have been some particularly difficult occasions on the journey when I have had to examine myself before God, asking whether my identity is in what I do in ministry and who I am as a person or whether I really find my identity in Jesus. My heartfelt desire is that I will keep my eyes fixed on Jesus, the “pioneer and perfecter” of my faith (Hebrews 12:2).

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Since the writing of this article Edna’s husband Stan unexpectedly passed away. Stan was my husband’s uncle, teacher, mentor & friend. We will all miss him terribly and our prayers are with Edna and her family.

Edna resides in Vancouver along with their married children, Joel and his wife Jenn, Corina her husband Chris, and granddaughter Anika. Edna would love to hear from former classmates.
egrenz@firstbc.org