One of the leadership teams that I (Joe) am most excited about in our city are Dennis and Armita Harmon. Dennis serves as the Pastor of Hope Lutheran Church (35th and Highland) and as the Vacancy Pastor of Mission of Christ Lutheran Church (9th and Center). Dennis grew up in the city of Milwaukee, not far from the churches in which he serves. He has a rich history of friends and connections, including many in the city hall, which he has introduced me to. He has an incredible heart for Milwaukee and a willingness to support LINC Milwaukee in any way that he can, knowing that it is only through the equipping of local leaders and the Gospel of Jesus that our beloved city will be changed.
His wife, Armita, has long been a vital part of Dennis’ ministry, but also involved in ministries of her own. At one point, she ran the SOS Center of Milwaukee, a wonderful tutoring program run by LCMS congregations and the South Wisconsin District. Recently, she undertook being a facilitator for GreifShare, a national program that helps those who are mourning the loss of loved ones. While a popular program in the suburbs, Hope Lutheran now hosts the city of Milwaukee’s only class. This program has become a big blessing to the city of Milwaukee, as their first cohort reached capacity. There is high demand for a second shift program, but because of Armita’s busy schedule of serving other places, they will have to figure out how to grow into the need.
But this is what good leaders on the ground level do: they see the need, figure out the who, what, and where of how to meet the need, then they accomplish it. I am thankful for leaders like this, I believe that these are the people who can bring change and hope into our cities and our nation.