Getting to know John Verner:
John is the third generation member of his family to attend Grace Lutheran Church. His grandfather was Reuben Verner and his parents were Don and Elaine Verner. He is related, to great extent, to many past and present members of Grace, through both his mother and father. John grew up on his family’s dairy farm outside of St. Charles. The farm was familiar to Grace members as the Verner barn was used by Grace for their Christmas Barn Service for almost 20 years, including live animals (cows, horses, sheep etc.) in the service.
John related a story about his parents when they were deciding which church to attend after being married. His mother was a member of Geneva Lutheran Church and while expecting their first child it was said that if the baby was a girl Don would join Geneva Lutheran –if the baby was a boy Elaine would join Grace Lutheran. As it turned out there was a boy –a boy –a boy –a boy and –a boy. John thinks his parents got a clear message from God that they were to go to Grace Lutheran Church.
While growing up he and his four brothers were very active in church life at Grace. John has lots of memories of his days riding in the fund raising Bike-a-thons sponsored by Grace. Lots of miles spent on the back of a 2 wheeler, friendships made and experiences of being a family and depending on each other for various things. If you get a chance ask John about those trips. He has a lot of stories about his adventures. The Verner family hosted 2 foreign exchange students –Hans from Sweden and Frank from Germany. John graduated from East St. Charles High School in 1981 and from Iowa State in 1990, majoring in math. He currently works for an insurance statistical service.
After college, John was introduced by friends to his future wife, Candice Hopkins. They married in 1993 and had three boys, Zachery, Jacob and Joseph. Happy family news is that Zach and his fiancée have set a wedding date in November 2019. John was very active coaching his boys in sports as they were growing up.
John has served on many teams at Grace, Stewardship, Audit, Nominating, VBS (the kids love him he’s so much fun!) and just recently he was elected to the Vision Team. John’s family have been mowing the church lawn in the summer and are going to continue that service this coming summer. Interesting to note that he is following in the footsteps of his father, Don, who spent many years mowing grass at Grace.
Thank you John for helping us to get to know you!
-Written by Cathy Whiteside 2-27-18