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Staff
Pastor

Robert Dargatz

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Pastor Robert Dargatz was born in Detroit, Michigan on October 31, 1950 to Arthur and Corky Dargatz. He has one younger brother, Ken, who lives in Michigan. After Robert graduated from public high school, he earned an Associate of Arts degree from Concordia Junior College in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He took a few summer classes at Wayne State University in Detroit, then he finished his undergraduate studies at Concordia Senior College in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree with a concentration in Speech and Communications. He then decided to attend Concordia Theological Seminary in Springfield, Illinois, where he majored in New Testament Biblical Studies and minored in Systematic Theology. He served his vicarage in San Diego, and graduated from Concordia Theological Seminary with a Master of Divinity degree in 1976. He began work on a Master of Sacred Theology degree, then he was placed as a resident counselor and instructor of Religion at Concordia College in Ann Arbor, Michigan. In 1977, he was called as the sixth faculty member at Christ College Irvine where he served for twenty-one years, acting as Religion Division Chair from 1981 to 1995. In 1982, Robert met his life's mate on an evangelism call. He and his wife, Mary, are blessed with three children. In 1998, Robert received and accepted a Call to serve as the Pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Orange. Pastor Dargatz has done graduate work through programs at UCLA in Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, and at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, in Theological Studies. He has had the privilege of serving on the LCMS Pacific Southwest District's Mission Board, as a District counselor for LWML, on the Concordia University Irvine Board of Regents, on the LCMS Commission on Theology and Church Relations, and on the LCMS Commission on Doctrinal Review. He currently serves on the Pacific Lutheran High School in Torrance Board of Directors, and on the LCMS Commission on Theology and Church Relations.

 


Adminstrative Assistant

Joann Chapel

Joann was born and raised in Pennsylvania, but has lived in California for over 30 years. She and her family have been members of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Orange for over 20 years. Before serving as our Pastor's administrative assistant, Joann also worked at Immanuel's dayschool in different capacities. She and her husband have two grown children who are alumni of Immanuel's dayschool. Joann enjoys her work at Immanuel, being a grandma, and spending time with her family.

 


Director of Music

Christian Guebert

Christian was baptized and confirmed here at Immanuel Lutheran Church. In 2010, he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Concordia University Irvine (CUI), and in 2013, he earned his Master of Music degree in Music Composition from California State University Fullerton (CSUF). Having studied choral and orchestral conducting under faculty at CUI and CSUF, he went on to conduct music throughout the United States and in Europe on music tours. Christian is a committed music educator and professor. He has served as a music instructor at Orange Coast Musical Arts, and he presently serves as an adjunct professor of Music at Concordia University Irvine. In addition, he teaches private piano lessons here in Orange County. From 2012 to the present, Christian has served as Immanuel's director of music. Christian is also a commissioned and published composer who has written for instrumental and choral ensembles of various sizes. His compositions have been performed in the United States and Europe. In 2012, one of Christian's choral compositions earned him the honor of being selected as one of seven finalists in a prestigious, nation-wide competition, held by the Pacific Chorale and John Alexander in Orange County. Many of Christian's original works are still being performed in the locales in which they were commissioned or premiered.

 


Organist and Choir Accompanist

Mirta Leiss

Mirta has served as Immanuel's organist and choir accompanist since 2006. She began music lessons at age five, dedicating her life to serving the Lord with her musical talents. From childhood, Mirta was a member of her home church choirs and instrumental groups; she also served as an organist, pianist, flutist and vocal soloist. She graduated from River Plate University, Argentina in 1982 and 1984 with vocal and piano performance degrees. Mirta has served as music teacher at K-12 Christian schools, choir director and music minister in California as well as in her native country. She was a member of the Los Angeles Master Chorale for 8 seasons and organist and choir director for Hispanic Ministries at the Crystal Cathedral for six years before coming to Immanuel. Mirta has been a church organist for more than 20 years and she enjoys playing the keyboard, composing and arranging music.

 


Preschool Director and Kindergarten Teacher

Kristine Rohm

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Kristine was born and raised in the Lutheran Church; she is also a military brat who moved across, and lived in many different places throughout the United States. Happy to have settled here in Old Towne Orange, she and her husband are blessed with two beautiful daughters. Kristine earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education at Concordia University River Forest, Illinois. She has been directing Lutheran preschools for 14 years. Kristine started two Lutheran preschools from scratch (Zion in Dayton, Ohio, and Grace in Corona, California) and was director at St. John’s Preschool in Orange for over six years where her responsibilities included overseeing the expansion of the preschool program and building. Kristine has been very active in the LCMS Pacific Southwest District, serving on the Lutheran Educator’s Conference Committee, the Early Childhood Cabinet, and as a Conference workshop presenter. She enjoys reading, gardening, staying healthy, and keeping things simple.

 


Preschool Teacher

Robin Wells

Robin Wells comes to Immanuel's Preschool from St. John’s Preschool in Orange where she served with Kristine Rohm. Robin earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education from Concordia University Irvine. She also holds a certificate in Montessori Training. Robin brings to Immanuel a wealth of experience, having taught preschool classes for over 15 years. She and her husband are blessed with three children.


Preschool Teacher

Jamie Tidball

Jamie comes to Immanuel’s Preschool from St. John’s Preschool in Orange where she taught for 12 years. Jamie is committed to teaching God’s children. She holds an Early Childhood Credential from Rancho Santiago College, and has over 20 years of teaching experience in Lutheran preschools. Jamie and her husband have been married for 26 years, and they are blessed with three children, all of whom attended Lutheran schools. 


Preschool Office Assistant

Robin Wright

Robin Wright comes to Immanuel's Preschool after taking a break from the preschool environment to homeschool her two children. She served as Kristine Rohm's office assistant at St. John’s Preschool in Orange from 2003 to 2006. Prior to that, Robin taught preschool and did administrative work in Northern California preschools for several years, until she and her husband had their first child.
 
 

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