By Dan Bechtold
A mission trip to Peru was all David Jahn needed to know the Lord was calling him into the ministry.
Jahn is the new pastor of the Assembly of God Church of Winner. He has been serving the church since the end of March.
Prior to going into the ministry, Jahn worked in the field of agronomy.
He explained that a 10 day mission trip to Peru changed his life. He visited six small churches and saw men who had given their hearts to the Lord and had been given a bible and told to go preach. “They had no training. That is what moved me and my thought was why does not someone come along side and teach them. It seemed to me the Lord was saying ‘why don’t you do it.’”
Jahn explained he left Land O Lakes where he was working and went to the seminary.
The pastor went to Bethel Theological Seminary in St. Paul, Minn. and graduated in 1995.
His first church was in Farmington, Iowa, for three years.
He then went to Luverne, Minn., to revitalize a church which was on the verge of closing. He served 13 years as the pastor and was also the chaplain at the Minnesota Veterans Home for 20 hours a week.
After serving the church in Luverne he and his wife were accepted for World Missions. They spent a year traveling in a four state area tryng to raise money to serve as missionaries in Croatia. Each couple had to raise their own funds.
Unfortunately, they did not raise enough money for the required budget.
There were no churches available after a year spent trying to raise money for the mission trip. So, Jahn went to back into agronomy. He managed the ag coop in Faulkton for four years. He then transferred to Corson where he did safety and compliance for 2 ½ years.
Jahn said he heard of the opening in Winner and applied.
Jahn enjoys being a pastor and felt his experience was a good fit for Assembly of God in Winner.
“I like working with people. I enjoy the challenge of public speaking and presenting the gospel,” he said.
“I like challenging people in a way that makes them think. My job as a preacher is to find a way to communicate the message in a way that challenges people to think differently than they normally do and in a way that keep them engaged,” he added.
As our culture has changed so has the church says Jahn.
“I think there are things that have come up were the American church has gotten more concerned about pleasing people than pleasing God,” he said.
In the pastor’s opinion, the modern trend in a lot of churches is what can we do to get everyone to like us.
Jahn grew up in Clarkfield, Minn., which is 25 miles north of Marshal, Minn. His wife grew up on a farm outside of Cottonwood, Minn.
After graduating from high school, Jahn went to the University of Minnesota, St. Paul, and received a degree in agronomy graduating in 1991.
He first job was as a field agronomist for Land O Lakes for eight years. He then was the manager of a coop in Sargent, Neb., for two years.
Jahn and his wife Gail have two children: Elissa, Sioux Falls and Andrea, Parker, who is married and has two children. The Winner couple have two grandchildren.
Jahn and his wife have been fortunate to have gone on several mission trips. They have been to the Ukraine, India and other countries.
“We felt this is where God wants us now,” he said.