Jeff Erbskorn, who will join the staff of St. Paul Lutheran Church on Trail Ridge Road later this month, has a favorite quote.
“I like to say, ‘The church is a hospital for sinners, not a museum for saints,’ because we’re all broken,” explained Erbskorn, who will serve as St. Paul’s associate pastor. “We find hope and meaning in the church.”
Erbskorn, 43, is a native of Huntsville, Ala. He was ordained in 1996 after graduating from the Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary in Columbia.
“My style is to reach out to both the young and the old and especially to folks who have given up on the church,” Erbskorn said. “In a world that seems to be going crazy, it’s important to find a sense of hope, and I really believe the church has lot to offer in that regard.”
Erbskorn is scheduled to begin working at St. Paul May 20. He will preach during the 8:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. services on May 26 and he will be available to meet church members at the 9:45 a.m. service. Erbskorn’s installation is set for 4 p.m. on the same day at St. Paul’s.
“My mother was a Southern Baptist and my dad was a German Lutheran,” Erbskorn said. “I got the best of both worlds because the Baptists do a tremendous job of witnessing and talking about their faith while the Lutherans tend to be service-oriented and a little bit more quiet. I believe we need both types in the church, so it works out well.”
Erbskorn is coming to St. Paul from North Carolina, where he is the senior pastor at Ascension Lutheran Church in Shelby. Prior to holding that position, Erbskorn was the associate pastor at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Spartanburg and the senior pastor at Transfiguration Lutheran Church in Cayce.
“One of the many things that excites me about St. Paul is the opportunity to work in a team ministry, which I did when I was at St. John’s Lutheran Church,” Erbskorn said. “With a team, you can provide a deeper, fuller ministry because each staff member brings a variety of gifts for the congregation. You can do more outreach and you can do more ‘in-reach,’ so you have a more balanced ministry.”