Jesus Cares Ministries Staff

describe the imageRev. Joel Gaertner serves are Vice President of Ministry and National Director of Jesus Cares Ministry. He joined TLHA in October 2013. He continues to serve as chairman of the WELS Intellectual and Developmental Disability Ministry Committee. Upon graduation in 1990, Pastor Gaertner was assigned as an Outreach Explorer in Boone County, Kentucky, where he served for 6 years establishing Amazing Grace Lutheran Church. From there until 2011, he served at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Algoma, Wisconsin, followed by 12 years at Faith Lutheran Church in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin before joining TLHA. Contact Pastor Gaertner by phone at (920) 517-0381 or email

Julie Luetke, Jesus Cares Ministries RepresentativeJulie Luetke has served as a Jesus Cares Ministries Representative since 2006. She has always been interested in serving people who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. Her interest in special ministries began more than 35 years ago, and her experience includes volunteering in special education and working in direct care.

She is also very active in the Jesus Cares Ministries program at her church. Julie is always excited when churches design a ministry for people with developmental disabilities in their communities. She likes brainstorming with volunteers to help them better their classes to reach more people. Contact Julie by phone at (320) 522-2379 or email


Jackie Mayer, Community Relations DirectorJackie Mayer serves as Community Relations Director for Jesus Cares Ministries. She helps develop "New Friends", other JCM programs.

She shares, "JCM is such an important ministry to families like mine. I firmly believe that every church should support JCM in some way because when parents first find out their child has special needs, their starting place for resources and support should be their pastor and church family. JCM can give them the resources they need to do so. This ministry has such an impact for the special needs community, the volunteers and my own son. I consider myself blessed to be working with my 'heroes' because they work passionately to care for and support families like mine." Contact Jackie by phone at (920) 860-0639 or email


web bill tStaff Minister Bill Truebenbach first came to The Lutheran Home Association in 2002 to work in mission advancement and is currently a Jesus Cares Ministries Program Coordinator. He has completed the Staff Ministry Certification from Martin Luther College in New Ulm, Minnesota. Through workshops, reading and learning from mentors in this area, he has learned more about working with people who have intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Bill has been blessed to enjoy many activities with JCM participants, including seeing them be confirmed, going fishing, and more. Contact Bill by phone at (262) 677-2066 or email