Patricia Kandler, Organist

Pat, whose family has deep roots at Brownback's Church going back to the original Brownback family, has served as church organist since April 1954! She started playing the organ when she was just 15 years old. Pat has 4 children, 14 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren. Her outstanding gifts as a musician truly enrich our worship.

Kris Houck, Parish Administrator

As Parish Administrator, Kris provides a warm and welcoming atmosphere for church members and visitors who call or visit the church. Kris provides general office support to the parish, staff, congregation, and committees, in order to support the ministries and mission of Brownback's UCC. Kris and her husband, Mike, have three children -- Taggart, Kennedy, and Beckett.

Penny Sallade, Choir Director

Penny directs the Chancel Choir, Chancel Handbell Choir, Good News Singers, Worship Ensemble, and Youth Handbell Choir. With the help of Kaitlin Iezzi, she also leads Kids JAM music during Worship Play. Penny coordinates all of the special music that is performed during the summer Sunday services. Penny has two daughters, Kaitlin and Amanda.

Church Staff


Pastor Mark Stryjak

Hello and welcome to Brownback’s United Church of Christ! My name is Mark and I began my theological education at Lancaster Theological Seminary in 2006 and then participated in a yearlong chaplaincy program at Lancaster

General Hospital in 2010, where I received training in clinical pastor education.

My call into ministry developed in 2000, when I was living in San Diego, California, and ever since then, I have been continually surprised at the wonderful places and people I have had the opportunity to meet and minister to. 

I have worked here at Brownback’s United Church of Christ as an intentional interim for one year in 2013 before receiving my official call as sole Pastor to St John’s in Southern Illinois in 2014. After three years and a couple of months, I was able to return to where I began my ministry here at Brownback’s. 

My family and I are very excited for this new and wonderful opportunity to be back in this area, closer to our families and united again in faith with this faith body. My time in 2013 was wonderful and I hope to build on that experience and my time in Illinois to grow and sustain ministries in which to reach as many people as possible.

So if you are searching for a church to call home or just passing through some weekend, I invite you to stop in, knowing that wherever you are on life’s journey, you are welcomed here by a community who provides care for all! 

Very Truly Yours,
Rev. Mark Stryjak