ST. John the Baptist meet the staff

Meet Our Staff

Father Alex Carlson, Pastor

Father Carlson grew up in St. Paul, and was a parishioner at St. Joseph’s in West St. Paul. He graduated from Cretin-Derham Hall high school in 2001, and attended Bemidji State University for a year. In 2002, Father Carlson was accepted into St. John Vianney college seminary for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, where he received his Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and Catholic Studies. In 2006, he entered St. Paul Seminary where he received his Masters in Divinity and was ordained a priest in 2010 for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. He served as an associate pastor at Epiphany in Coon Rapids and St. Ambrose in Woodbury before being installed as Pastor here at St. John the Baptist in July of 2013. Father Carlson has a great love for the sacraments, especially the Eucharist and Confession. He is also a big proponent of Catholic education, as it formed him into who he is today. He enjoys spending time with family and friends, golfing, and ice fishing.

952.474.8868, ext. 216
Fr.Carlson@stjohns-excelsior.org

Deacon Tony Pasko

Deacon Tony is a native of Chicago, but moved to the Twin Cities in 1985. He is married to Ingrid, and they have three children (their fourth passed away ten years ago) and seven grandchildren. Deacon Tony attended graduated from DePaul University, and later went on to Loyola University of Chicago for their MBA program. He was ordained a permanent deacon in 1997, and served at Our Lady of Grace in Edina until joining St. John's in June of 2016. He enjoys golf (but wishes his game was better) and boating in his free time

952.474.8868
deacontony@stjohns-excelsior.org

 

Deacon Gary Hoffman

952.474.8868
deacongary@stjohns-excelsior.org

Andrea McMerty-Brummer, Parish Administrator

952.474.8868, ext. 204
AMcMerty-Brummer@stjohns-excelsior.org

Taylor Gruber, Director of Faith Formation

Taylor started working at St. John's in September of 2015 and oversees all of the faith formation programs of St. John's, starting at baptism and running all the way through adult formation. She grew up in Alexandria with her parents and six siblings, went to South Dakota State University, and served as a FOCUS missionary in Omaha. In her free time, Taylor likes to spend time with her family and friends, biking around the lakes of Minneapolis, and pulling pranks on her coworkers.

952.474.8868, ext. 207 
tgruber@stjohns-excelsior.org

Kate Fafinski, Youth Ministry & Communications

Kate works with the 6th-12th grade youth of St. John's, and in the Communications department. She grew up in Chanhassen with her parents and three brothers, and was a missionary for NET Ministries prior to joining the staff of St. John's in September of 2015. Outside of work, Kate likes photography, cooking, kayaking Minnesota's lakes and rivers with her brothers, hiking Colorado's mountains and Minnesota's trails with her Dad, and taking her dog (Maverick) to the dog park with her Mom and her dog (Zoey).

952.474.8868, ext. 217 
kfafinski@stjohns-excelsior.org

Michaela Frie, Music Director

Michaela is originally from Omaha, but studied Music Education at St. Cloud State University before moving on to get her Master of Arts in Liturgical Music from St. John's University in Collegeville, and eventurally joining St. John's staff in the early spring of 2016. She is married to Bryant, has a daughter named Elizabeth, and a cat named Trixi. In her free time, Michaela likes to go musicals (she hopes to one day be in a musical at a community theater), symphonies, and operas. She also enjoys traveling, hosting parties, and playing card games.

952.474.8868, ext. 205
mfrie@stjohns-excelsior.org

Kathleen Hollahan, Marketing & Development Coordinator

952.474.8868, ext. 208
khollahan@stjohns-excelsior.org

Scott Kragness, Lead Maintenance Technician

Scott joined St. John's staff in the fall of 2016. He lives in Eden Prairie, is married to Robin Kragness (who works in the school office), and they have two adult children, Hailey and Hudson. Prior to St. John's, Scott worked at Target for seven years. He is an avid reader, enjoys golfing, and was a sailing boat captain and scuba instructor in Hawaii for twenty years. One time, while scuba diving, Scott rode a whale shark.

952.474.8868, ext. 206
skragness@stjohns-excelsior.org

Christa Vassallo, Bookkeeper

Christa has four boys (one husband and three sons!), and is from Chanhassen. She went to Minnetonka High School, graduated from Northern Arizona University, and has worked in accounting for most of her life. She loves to create, is very artistic, and is always in the middle of a design project.

952.474.8868, ext. 203
cvassallo@stjohns-excelsior.org

Megan Adam, Office & Cemetery Manager

Megan has three (almost) adult children, Cate, Shannon and Michael, and two rambunctious dogs named Luci and Pickle. She earned her Bachelor's at the College of St. Benedict/St. John's University, then moved to southern California to work in banking management for eight years before coming home to raise her children in the relative sanity of Minnesota. She lives in Minnetonka and enjoys gardening & home repair/renovation projects, as well as spending time with friends and family - often enlisting their help on those repair/renovation projects! She feels very blessed to have found St. John's, and knows that God has a plan, which we can hear if we take the time to stop talking about our own plans and just listen.

952.474.8868, ext. 200
madam@stjohns-excelsior.org 

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