Who We Are
Pastor Scott Hawkins
310-373-0454, ext. 100
Life is a journey of unexpected twists and turns. We don’t know what the future holds, but we know who holds the future. With that in mind, God has been constantly surprising Pastor Scott. He was born and raised in the South Bay and then went to Concordia University in Irvine where he completed a degree in theology with a minor in Biblical Languages. After college God sent him on a road trip where he served churches from California to Maine. This trip helped him see God’s vast and wonderful church. When he came home he went to Fuller Seminary and met his beautiful bride, Emily. When he completed seminary and got married. God called Pastor Scott and Emily to move to Alabama where they served at as the Associate Pastor at Christ the King Lutheran Church in Birmingham Alabama for six years. While in Alabama they learned about all things college football, BBQ and God’s faithfulness in blessing them with two wonderful daughters; Grace (born in 2010) and Hope (born in 2015). God surprised them all by calling them back to South Bay where they are enjoying serving as the Senior Pastor at Ascension Lutheran Church.
Worship and Music Director
Faye Schwartz has been a member of Ascension Lutheran church since 1975. Her first career was high school teaching; then she worked for 20+ years as an educational computer software developer. And through the years, in various capacities, she has always been a church musician. Music, for her, is the clearest and strongest expression of her faith. She is passionate about planning worship which has a strong music component – music drawn from many genres, and music which engages and includes everyone.
In the community, Faye sings with Los Cancioneros Master Chorale, and at Ascension, she directs the Ascension Ringers Handbell Choir and the singers in the Ascension Choir.
Director of Student and Family Ministries
310-373-0454, ext. 104 or Cell 817-676-2985
TJ Spaeth is our Director of Student and Family Ministries. TJ came to us from Texas where he earned his BA in Business Administration from Texas A & M University in Corpus Christi. He served as Assistant Director of Student Ministries at White’s Chapel United Methodist Church in Southlake, Texas. His experience there included leading youth worship and Bible studies, planning and leading youth mission trips and retreats, and preaching and sharing the gospel.
TJ comes from a large family and has two younger siblings, so young people hold a special place in his heart. He also loves the outdoors and looks for ways to engage youth outside of the church setting. We are blessed to have the enthusiasm, ideas, and active faith that TJ brings to his youth ministry. TJ goes above and beyond to serve the youth and families of our congregation.
(310) 373-0454, ext. 101
Born in Fresno, Joyce Bogard has seen much of the world due in part of to her career-military father as well as years on the mission field in Thailand and New Zealand with YWAM (Youth with a Mission) and in Newcastle, England with Mercy Ships (a Christian hospital ship). She has a BS degree in Business Administration, an AS degree in architectural design, a real estate broker license and her pilot’s license. She has one daughter and five grandchildren, all located here in Southern California. Her son-in-law is the pastor of Powerhouse Church in San Pedro where she serves as the financial administrator part time.
Graphics and Media
(310) 373-0454, ext. 103
Dave came to Ascension in October of 2013. Born and raised in Mobile, AL, he began his professional career working at several Gulf Coast radio stations. After moving to L.A. in 1984, he continued his DJ career until his sideline of computer desktop publishing eventually became his mainstay. In 2004, he began producing graphics and other media for Hope Chapel in San Pedro. In addition to print design, he’s created films, websites and even helped create a men’s ministry program called Voyage to Valor. “My best work shines through when I’m doing it in service to God,” he states. Dave lives in Rancho Palos Verdes with his wife, Kathy and two of his four children.
Darlene Kurt joined Ascension Lutheran Church in 1989. She brought her daughter to the preschool the following year, and thus began an abundance of experience with children. Darlene started out as a mother helper, then moved from mother helper to assistant teacher, to Stay-and-Play leader, English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher, head teacher, and then was named director in 2005. Along the way, Darlene was also Ascension’s Children’s Church Coordinator and Nursery Coordinator. Prior to working at Ascension, Darlene was employed in the business administration field for fourteen years. Darlene holds a Child Development Certificate and a Site Supervisor Permit issued by the State of California Commission on Teacher Credentialing.
Darlene welcomes parents, grandparents, and caregivers to call, stop by, and schedule a tour to see our campus and personally learn more about our preschool program.