News and Tribune


August 4, 2013

Red Cross Humanitarian Awards: Jennifer Mills-Knutsen


Mills-Knutsen found her calling in a different kind of renewal. Like so many material things, hopes and dreams were broken that March day. Survivors needed help reconstructing their spirits too. Through her affiliation with the church, Mills-Knutsen chaired the Spiritual and Emotional Recovery team for March 2 Recovery, an organization that supervised the allocation of funds and provided other resources for victims of the tornadoes. As the efforts progressed, she would go on to chair the March 2 Recovery Steering Committee. 

“We dealt with helping people get access to mental health and pastoral care if they needed it because in the wake of a disaster, often times people find that it is a spiritual crisis,” Mills-Knutsen said. “It awakens a lot of questions about how God works in this world. And so people need a place to process that.”

St. Luke’s congregant Jack Vissing didn’t need any time to understand why he nominated his pastor for the humanitarian honor. The local attorney extolled Mills-Knutsen for her ideas and enthusiasm. Among many impressive qualities, those were why he and the other selection committee members hired her as their pastor.

“I have been around leadership all of my life. I’ve seen good leadership and I’ve seen bad leadership. And she does exceptional,” Vissing said. “I’m humbled by the fact that she is my pastor.” 

Humility resonates with Mills-Knutsen as well. Receiving the award isn’t something to which she aspired, but she remains grateful for the honor. Serving her community in ways she believes Jesus would sanction, though, is her ultimate reward.

“For me, it all goes back to the idea of call and the idea of following Jesus. That’s what I do. My life is about living the life that God can use and that Jesus would want me to live. And that means being willing to serve,” Mills-Knutsen said. “If you’re doing it in Christ’s name, that’s what it’s all about.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Easter 2014 photos

Click on any photo to purchase it.

Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law Holder Urges Bipartisanship on Immigration Raw: Truck, Train Crash Leads to Fireball US Airlines Cancel Israel Flights Obama Signs Workforce Training Law Crash Victims' Remains Reach Ukraine-held City Diplomatic Push Intensifies to End War in Gaza Obama Offers Condolences at Dutch Embassy Cat Fans Lap Up Feline Film Festival Raw: Lawmakers Scuffle in Ukraine's Parliament The Rock Finds His Inner 'Hercules' Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die Raw: MH17 Passenger Remains in Kharkiv, Ukraine Raw: Israel Hits Gaza Targets, Destroys Mosques Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts
2013 Photos of the year

Take a look at our most memorable photos from 2013.