Church Leadership

Pastor JohnPastor
John M. Palka, Ph.D.

One of the things that gets me stoked about being in Venice is that on so many levels Venice and the Westside of LA set trends that lead the nation. Where Venice and the Westside are today is where the nation will be in the years to come. It is an honor and pleasure to be working in this mission field with God’s saints at First Lutheran Church figuring out how the church can thrive and grow in this challenging and exciting environment.

My wife, Missy, and I invite you to join us and the FLV family. 



Church Secretary
Brenda Stoppel

Brenda Stoppel was baptized and confirmed at First Lutheran Venice and has been a life-long member. Throughout the years she has served in various roles, including Financial Secretary, Youth Group co-leader, songleader and choir member. After a long career in the finance and human resources departments at GTE and Verizon, she decided to take advantage of an early retirement package offered in September 2010.

Just about the time she was starting to look for a new job, she was asked if she would be interested in the Secretary position at First Lutheran Venice. She initially dismissed the idea but later said she felt like God was calling her to serve her home church in this role. Brenda has been the Secretary at FLV since July 2011.

As she answered God's call to serve, she answered His call to come home. Brenda unexpectedlly went to be with the Lord on Friday, March 12, 2021. We give thanks to God for Brenda who touched and blessed so many lives. 


Team Leaders

Carol Raines-Brown - Music Ministry

Ethan McMahan - Custodial

Samuel Curtis - Podcast and Music Ministry

Mark Parks - Facilities and Maintenance 

Paula Koch - Treasurer

Chuck McMahan - IT and Elder