Skip to content

Our Pastor

My name is Rev. Dr. Michael J. Nielsen, I have been married to Emily (from St. Louis, MO) for over 15 years.  We have seven beautiful children: Hannah who is 11, Miriam is 10, Jonah is 8, and Naomi who is 3,  twins – Timothy and Titus who are 1 ½.   We also have one child who we never met, Eden Hope was miscarried on May 4, 2019. We look forward to meeting Eden in heaven. We also are expecting a new addition to our family in December. Our family is filled out with a one year old Teddy Bear dog named Nico.

I grew up in Antigo, WI and went to Peace Lutheran Church and School. I attended Peace from PreK all the way to 8th grade where I then went to Antigo High School.  I am proud to be a Red Robin (home of the 2019 Division 2 Baseball State Champions).  As I grew up in Antigo, I had the gift of being so close to Camp Luther – about 45 minutes.   I’ve been attending Camp for 32 years now, whether it be at Camp Luther or at Camp LuWiSoMo in the South Wisconsin District or Lutheran Island Camp in the Minnesota North District.   Camp is in my blood I like to say.  Growing up Camp Luther was home away from home.  I served there for two summers (2003/2004) as a camp counselor and at Lutheran Island Camp (2006/2007).  

I graduated from Concordia University in Mequon, Wisconsin in 2006 and Concordia Seminary St. Louis in 2010.   I met my wife at CUW during my Senior year of college (she was a freshman).  During Seminary we dated long-distance.   Part of my seminary experience included a year of vicarage which was in the holy city of Green Bay, WI.  I vicared at Pilgrim Lutheran Church, mere blocks from Lambeau Field.

My first Call out of seminary was a dual-parish in the South Wisconsin District, St. James Lutheran Church in Necedah, WI and St. Paul Lutheran Church in New Miner, WI.  I served there from 2010 to 2014 where I took a call to the Northwest corner of Minnesota to serve the saints of Trinity, Fisher and St. Paul, Euclid from July 2014 to November 2018. I then served the Saints at Salem Lutheran Church in Barron, WI from December 2018 – Easter Sunday 2024.

I am a huge Green Bay Packer fan and partial owner. The Brewers are my baseball team.My college team is the Wisconsin Badgers and I also follow the Bucks on occasion.   I am glad now that I will be able to watch my Packers on TV every Sunday!

Some of my hobbies include gardening, fishing, walking, reading, and spending time with my family.

I also continued my education at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, and recently earned my Doctor of Ministry Degree. I completed my degree in December 2021 and participated in graduation in May 2022.  My project surrounded the home- centered, church-supported work of raising children in the faith. Families are my passion to see how they are watering the seed of faith in their homes. Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions about St. John’s.