pastor judy ganz

I grew up in Wisconsin, I have had several ties to Minnesota.  I studied at St. Olaf College for my nursing degree and later did two years of my seminary here.  I also treasure the time my nursing classmates and I spent a week in the boundary waters.  As a brief summary of many years, I spent the 1970’s in Nicaragua where two of my three children were born, serving the Moravian Church there and teaching nursing both in Bilwaskarma and

Managua. Our family was evacuated during the Sandinista Revolution.  I later went back to school to become a nurse practitioner and ended up working in geriatrics.   Nursing is a ministry in and of itself, but I had long wrestled with a call to ordained ministry so eventually ended up in seminary, graduating in 2008.  I met Charlie during seminary and our first call was to Edmonton, AB.  We served there for 3 years before moving to Bethlehem, PA where I was the Executive Director of our Moravian Board of World Mission.  That ministry gave me the opportunity to visit our Moravian missions throughout the world.  I retired at the end of 2017, but served as an interim pastor at our Wisconsin Rapids congregation for the last 7 months of 2018.  I am excited to now be serving the Cedar UMC congregation and look forward to our ministry together and where God might be taking us!

Pastor Judy

Meet The Cedar Team

Lisa Sainio -

Administrative Assistant

Lisa has faithfully served as the Administrative Assistant at Cedar Church for over 14 years.


Family is Lisa’s passion, and her six grandchildren are her greatest blessing. She grew up in Anoka, MN,  raised three amazing children, and now spends most her time with her family, including her 92 year old father.  She’d rather be with family than anywhere else, and she thanks God every day for each and every one of them.

Jill Rykhus -


Jill is originally from Walnut Grove, MN. She started taking piano lessons in first grade.  In high school, she accompanied the choir and played for all the musical plays. She also provided the music for vacation bible school at her church. We’ve been fortunate to have Jill as our pianist for 22 years of the 26 years she’s been a member at Cedar.


Jill and her husband John have 2 grown daughters: Jenna and Jamie, who are both married and live locally.  She also has two dogs, Lacey and Koda.


In her spare time, Jill enjoys running her miniature Australian Shepherd, Koda, in the agility ring. She also enjoys scrapbooking, traveling with her family, and watching NFL football.  Her favorite thing about Cedar Church is the family feel. “People are always there for you when you need them!”

Mary Gutknecht- Custodian

Mary, the middle child of 7,  was born in St. Paul, MN, on a farm where the day started at 4:00 a.m. She's the mom of 5 kids (two step-children). 

Mary has had a wide variety of jobs over the years. This fall she is starting her 4th year keeping Cedar clean and inviting. 

Mary loves to garden, cook, bake, sew, and play Farmville on her computer. 

Mary says, "I thank God for all I've been blessed with and for all the people at Cedar who've shared my life." 

(763) 434-7463

17541 Jefferson St NE,

Ham Lake, MN 55304

Sunday Worship at 10am

Office hours by appointment

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