Thank you for taking a moment to learn a little about me! My name is James Demmel and I am seminarian at United Lutheran Seminary, currently serving Shepherdstown Lutheran Parish as their Vicar (pastoral intern). I earned my Master’s of Divinity from Duke University Divinity School in 2017 and am now working towards ordination as a Minister of Word and Sacrament in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).
My calling to the church is borne out of the freedom we all have in Christ. I love being together with people, learning and teaching about God’s Word, and attending to how the Holy Spirit is moving among us, constantly drawing us in to God and across boundaries into vulnerability and relationship with one another. For me, there is no joy greater than nurturing and sustaining Christian community.
In John’s Gospel, Jesus has a conversation with Nicodemus, a religious leader intrigued by grace. Jesus tells him: “The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” I love this verse because it points to the joyful mystery that is life together with God. We can’t always discern how God is moving in our lives, but from gentle breeze to raging gale, the God of love, the Creator and Sustainer of the universe, is with us. I invite you all to come and live into the mystery of grace here with us at St. James or St. Peter’s.
This joyful mystery of grace has brought me from my home of Durham, NC to Shepherdstown this year. I am blessed to live in town, a few blocks away from St. Peter’s. You can often find me around, running, walking, or reading at one of our fine local cafés. When I’m not around town, I’m likely in DC with my partner, Nicole, a graduate student at George Washington University.
I would love to connect with you! Feel free to call, email, or drop by the office for conversation!