Church Staff

Rev. John Shipman

Brothers and sisters in Christ, come knowing God’s compassion and love so you will be inspired to make a difference at St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church, Alpena, the state of Michigan and throughout the world.

Nena (my wife) and I have five children and we served in two congregations in Michigan in the 1990s. Both of these congregations (St John at Grayling and St Paul in Au Gres) continue to be celebrated in our hearts and minds and the people in each ministry setting remain a part of our vision of service. I was called to serve within the United States Military (Air Force) following this time in Michigan, as a Chaplain.  In total, I served for over 30 years within the Air Force – over 9 years as an enlisted professional before becoming a pastor, and over 20 years as an officer. I served in four conflicts (Desert Storm, Bosnia, Syria and Afghanistan) and I was deployed 10 times.

Please stop by my office to speak about your hopes and dreams for St. Paul, for if we come with open hearts in the knowledge that God knows each of us, we can work together as servant leaders in Christ’s name.


Administrative and Ministry Assistant
Nena Shipman was hired in November 2020 for a new position at St. Paul. She will serve as both an administrative assistant and as a ministry developer/coordinator/facilitator for youth and small group ministry.   Nena has a bachelor’s degree in Church Camping and Ministry from Spring Arbor College and a master’s degree in Human Relations from the University of Oklahoma.   Her varied background in banking, ministry leadership around the world, and her active involvement at St. Paul will only help us as we continue to grow. 

Jackie Stanifer 

Administrative Assitant
Jackie Stanifer is an administrative assistant at St. Paul Lutheran Church and has worked there for the last 27 years. She works part-time and prepares and prints the bulletins weekly, the newsletters monthly, tickets for various dinners, and provides general assistance as needed. Jackie moved to Alpena from Houghton Lake 30 years ago when she married her husband, Michael. They have three married wonderful children, Jennifer, Jocelyn and Jeffrey; Three precious grandchildren, Emma, Liam, and Elias, and 3 grand-doggies!  Jackie loves spending time with her family and friends, bike riding, walking, swimming, and reading. 

Marvis McNeil 

After Marvis’ life as a wife and mother of three wonderful children, she finds herself most fascinated by music. She has been in several orchestras, been to Interlochen for two years and enjoys everything that challenges her musically.  Music is the love of Marvis’ life,  after her wonderful family. God has given her a gift that she works very hard to spread in all venues. Being at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Alpena gives her a source to share her talents.  Marvis is truly grateful for God’s gift and is always eager to share it. 

Adam Neumann

Media Coordinator/
Adam Neumann is the media coordinator at St. Paul Lutheran Church. Adam is a musician, Karaoke host, and  father. Adam has been to multiple schools studying broadcasting, music, and environmental science and has an associate degree from Alpena Community College. He just graduated with a bachelor’s in environmental science from the University of Phoenix. In the life of Adam there is never a dull moment. He is always working on projects and loves to entertain. You can find Adam on Sunday mornings running the church service livestream.

Marty Cantleberry

Choir Director
Marty is in charge of running the church choir at St. Paul. She is a passionate and experienced musician with a deep love for worship and serving the congregation through music. Marty brings her talents and enthusiasm to rehearsals and performances, inspiring the choir to create beautiful harmonies and uplifting songs that enhance the worship experience for all.