Our Current News

Welcome to Our New Members

Gretchen and Randy Conklin: residents of Amherst most of their lives, were married at Immanuel Lutheran Church 48 years ago. Their children, Sharri and Shane, were baptized and confirmed here and have blessed them with 4 grandchildren. Randy worked in the commercial building industry before retiring and Gretchen was a preschool teacher. They look forward to continuing their journey of faith and service at Immanuel.

Kathy and Karl Donfried: have been affiliated with Immanuel since 1968 when it was still a Missouri Synod congregation. Kathy received her RN from Roosevelt Hospital in NYC, Karl served as a Pastor of Advent Lutheran Church in Manhattan and then taught in the Religion Department at Smith College. The Donfrieds have three children and seven grandchildren and live in Pelham. They have been associate members of Immanuel since January 2016.

Ethel Dwight: resides in Hatfield and has a daughter, Barbara Courtney, who lives in Plymouth, MA. She is transferring her membership from St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Holyoke where she has been a part of their church family since the Lutheran church in Hatfield closed. Ethel is retired from UMass, where she worked for 27 years, and keeps busy enjoying her loving family and friends.

Lillian Hebert is Gretchen Conklin’s mother. Lillian lives in Reflections at Arbors in Amherst. She and her late husband, Victor, and their two children, Gretchen and Wayne, were part of Immanuel’s original congregation. After retiring, Lillian and Victor, moved to Westhampton and joined St. Peter’s Lutheran. Gretchen and Randy are comforted to know that Lillian is again part of the Immanuel Community.

Sarah Olsen: moved to Amherst last year from Berkeley, California to take up a position in the Classics Department at Amherst College. She and her husband, Caleb, are an actively interfaith (Lutheran and Jewish) family, and are raising their sons, Nathaniel (3) and Ezra (1), in both traditions. Sarah and family are thrilled to be part of the Immanuel community.

John and Margaret Payne relocated to Shelburne, MA from Princeton, NJ in 1999 to manage the family’s black Angus beef farm. John has been happily busy with the farm as well as being active in local government roles. Margaret is an ELCA pastor who has worked in various capacities in the church before her most recent retirement in 2016. She now volunteers at the Senior Center in Shelburne Falls, works more often at her pottery wheel, and enjoys spending time with the four children and five grandchildren that she and John have accumulated during 48 years of marriage.

Alan Armstrong: was raised an Episcopalian in Silver Spring, Maryland and went to Haverford College and joined Haverford Meeting. Alan practiced law in Philadelphia for many years before moving to Northampton in 1992 with his wife, the painter Martha Armstrong. He began attending Immanuel Lutheran with his wife in the company of their daughter Abby Dallmann and her family and has been drawn to its message and its community. He is interested in the history of science and writes children’s books. Alan and Martha now live in Hatfield.


Austin Clark: is a Masters Candidate in Public History at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. While he was confirmed into the Presbyterian tradition, as an undergraduate he worked for a Lutheran church and so feels very much at home here at Immanuel.
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Immanuel Member Featured In Living Lutheran
Professor Julie Brigham-Grette was featured in a Living Lutheran series on responding to climate change. Read the article here: http://www.livinglutheran.org/2017/04/earth-day-series-elca-addressing-effects-climate-change/