Church Staff

Lead Pastor

Mike was born in Bemidji, MN and raised on a farm nearby.  He attended North Dakota State University graduating with a B.S. in Civil Engineering.  During college he was involved with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship during this time he met Jodi.  Jodi was a nursing student who had grown up in Southwestern Minnesota.  Mike fell madly in love with her and after a couple of years convinced her to marry him.

After college Mike became an officer in the U.S. Navy.  Jodi and Mike spent 3.5 years in Japan while Mike was stationed at USMC Air Station Iwakuni.  It was there that they had their first son, Andy.  After resigning from the Navy Mike attended Western Seminary in Portland, OR.  In Oregon their second son, William, was born. 

After seminary, Mike and Jodi moved back to Minnesota and planted an Evangelical Free Church in Bemidji, MN.  While in Bemidji they had two more children, Levi and Katie. 

Mike loves to camp, hunt, fish, ride snowmobiles and atvs.

Mike joined the staff at Calvary in January of 2018.  You can contact Pastor Mike at


Associate Pastor

Pastor Don Barsness is Canadian born and was raised in Billings, Montana.  He and his wife Marla have three children - Cari, Christa, and Curt and five grandchildren.

Don attended Northwest Bible College in Minot where he completed his undergraduate degree in Christian Education.  After pastoring in North and South Dakota for twenty-three years, Don returned to school, earning a Masters of Educational Ministries degree from Sioux Falls Seminary in 2000.

Both Don and Marla have a passion for life related Bible teaching.  Don's love is for spiritual nurturing and Marla's joy in music round out their ministries. 

Don came on staff as Associate Pastor in March of 2014.  He is currently serving as interim pastor while we search for a new lead pastor.

You can contact Pastor Don at


Administrative Assistant

Sarah grew up in Wisconsin.  She met Joel while in Bible school and after getting married, they moved to North Dakota to be missionaries to the Native Americans.  Joel and Sarah have three children, Ethan, Micah and Hannah.  Sarah came on staff as the administrative assistant in January of 2013.  

You can contact Sarah at: