Meet our new Vicar: Sara Funkhouser!

Sara Funkhouser

Thanks to your commitment and generosity, we were able to apply to host a seminary intern, or “vicar” for the 2020-2021 academic year. We have been assigned an intern from Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, IA. Last month Pastor Van Kley, who will be Vicar Sara’s primary supervisor, spent two days in a Zoom conference with other internship supervisors and students. During this jam-packed event, Pastor Van Kley and Sara had time to get to know one another, begin developing Sara’s learning goals, and become acclimated to the unique expectations and guidelines that Wartburg holds for their students and host congregations.

While the COVID-19 situation has left many things unclear, we want to assure you that at this time, we still plan to welcome Sara to Seattle sometime this summer. She plans to remain with us for a full 12 month. At this time, we expect to rent an apartment near the church which we will need to furnish. If you have a lead on a rental space, please contact Pastor Van Kley. If you are spending this time down-sizing and re-organizing, please set aside any furnishings or other items we can use to create Sara’s home (dishes, utensils, appliances, furniture, etc.), and contact Pastor Van Kley to let her know what you have.

While so many things are uncertain, and while we’ve suffered many disappointments and cancellations, welcoming Sara is a wonderful sign of hope and new life still among us! Thank you for your commitment to the vicar program. Please pray for Sara as she finishes her semester and makes plans for her big move to Seattle.


Hello, everyone! My name is Sara Funkhouser and I am a candidate for Word and Sacrament Ministry at Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, IA. I am originally from the Twin Cities in Minnesota and I am excited to get out of the Midwest and explore the PNW! I graduated from Concordia College in Moorhead, MN, with a double major in Religion and English Literature and a minor in Interfaith Studies. I love cooking/baking and spending time exploring outdoors; I am definitely looking forward to seeing mountains and not just hills and corn fields. I also love reading and I look forward to hearing some of the recommendations that you all have for me! I am eagerly awaiting the day that I get to move to Seattle and meet all of you. I cannot wait to be a part of the Phinney community! 
– Sara