Our Team


Lead Pastor:  Sam Snyder

I am passionate about knowing God and making him known. I grew up in Mexico and I have spent the last 16 years living, learning, and ministering here in the United States. I have been shaped by many ministry experiences from Mexico to the USA, from Bible school to Grad school, from small towns to big cities, from failed ventures to successful ventures, from youth pastor to church planter…but the experiences I love the most are being a husband to Sarah and a father to five kids. Send me an email or catch me on a Sunday.

 Community Life Pastor: Mishawn Gudipati

I love working with the children, individuals and families at our church! My greatest passion is to see the generations loving God and knowing Him personally as they walk in the calling God has over their lives. I attended the University of Northwestern SP where I majored in Ministry and Psychology and I love being able to put what I’ve learned into practice. My husband Jessy and I have three children.


Elder: Agnesgrace Auko-Kambeke

I am originally from Kenya, East Africa. I have 4 adult children, three boys, and one daughter. I went to school at the University of Minnesota, where I earned my MSW in Mental Health Social Work and MPh in Nutrition. Currently, I am working on a Master of Arts in Leadership as I prepare to be a chaplain – sometime next year – God willing. I enjoy doing discipleship and pastoral care ministry as well as going to nursing homes to visit the sick.  I am passionate about our church because of the teaching of the word of God, Worship, and relationships with members of the church.


Elder: Felix Amenumey

I am originally from Ghana, West Africa. I graduated from the University of Minnesota, with a Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership Policy and Development. I have been a member of Cross Culture since 2006 and I am passionate about empowering people in prayer and intercession. My wife, Sheila and I reside in St. Paul with our three children.



Elder: Gene Van Veldhuizen

In 1967 I received Christ as my Savior. I attended North Central College in Mpls. After graduating in 1972, I attended and was employed at Bethel Christian Fellowsip in St. Paul, the planting church of Cross Culture. In 1982, my profession changed to printing. For the last 26 years of my printing career, I was employed at Northwestern College as the print shop manager and retired in 2012. Since retirement, I have been privileged to conduct a church service at the Rose of Sharon Nursing Home and I lead a small missional community group. My wife, Alvina and I were among the initial group that planted Cross Culture. We enjoy the vibrant worship expression.


Elder: Sara Howard 

I was born in Wrangel, Alaska, raised in northern Minnesota, graduated Cromwell Highschool in 96, and graduated Lake Superior College in 2000 as an OTA. Nothing impressive, nothing to draw attention, but maybe that is as it should be. I don’t want my life to be a culmination of achievements, but rather a journal of moments. This church is my home, my family, I love it. If you must know who I am, I am a follower of Jesus, a wife of 14 yrs, a mother of 3, an artist, a gardener, a coffee drinker, a loud laughing, opinionated woman who only wants to serve in whatever way is needed and to walk the Jesus way.


Elder: Jessy Gudipati

I grew up in southern India where I learned about and decided to follow Jesus. My passion to make disciples started at a young age. My heart is to see people receive the truth about who Jesus really is and make the life changing commitment to follow him each and every day. I reside with my wife, Mishawn, and our three children in St. Paul.

Ministry Coordinators

Compassion: Carissa Kjarland

I attended Northwestern University and have made the Twin Cities my home. I love helping people and enjoy using my gifts and talents to lead the Compassion ministry at Cross Culture.


Connecting: Lorraine Wotorson

I love interacting with people and enjoy seeing people make connections. Hearing peoples stories and creating spaces for lives to intersect and experience God’s love, mercy and grace matters to me. The Twin Cities became my home when I immigrated from Liberia, West Africa about 23 years ago.  At Cross Culture I have found acceptance, grace, and friendships.  A place where folks who just came alongside me as I walked through life – divorce, single parenting, care-giving, and now empty-nesting.  I am blessed!  And because I have been blessed, I want to use what I have to bless others.


Children: Noele Orellana

I’m passionate about equipping and empowering kids to experience the love of God and to walk in the power of the Spirit. I work with Minneapolis Public Schools in Early Childhood Education as my career choice and I love learning alongside kids coming from all backgrounds. My husband and I reside in St. Paul.

Finance: Andrew Howard

I’ve been attending our church since 2009, and it has been a great church home. I love it for the intimate times of praise and worship, the interactive kids ministry, and the creative fellowship opportunities of connecting with others during church services and during the week in people’s homes. I naturally gravitate toward math based ways of helping others, which is why I enjoy overseeing the finances for our church.


Hospitality: Sarah Snyder

Originally from the east coast, Minnesota has now been home for over 14 years. After graduating from Bible school, I married my best friend Sam in 2004. I moved to the frozen tundra and survived my first winter! In 2012 we went from a family of 4 to a family of 7, when we adopted our three oldest children, locally from foster care. Now, as a mom of five, I long to cultivate our home to be a place of joy, beauty and rest; not just for our family but for others too. I love hospitality and creating welcoming spaces for all to enjoy. I believe that people are this world’s greatest treasure and that life is better when shared with others.


Missions: Matt Carlquist

Having missions experience myself, I enjoy leading the missions team at Cross Culture. It is a privilege to support and encourage the various missionaries of Cross Culture.


Youth: Tyler Holman

I love seeing lives transformed by the truth and power of God. It is my hope to pour into the generations so that the message of God’s love and freedom He brings through the cross can be made known. My wife and I recently welcomed our first child, a beautiful little girl.