By Lynne Beauchamp, firstname.lastname@example.org
For Pastor Mark Porinsky, July 9 marked a monumental day. This day, in 1978, Porinsky wasordained and installed at Faith Lutheran Church on North Territorial Road in Dexter.
Forty years later, in June 2018 the congregation celebrated the anniversary of his arrival by hosting a party in his honor.
During those forty years of service, the Pastor said he has seen many changes and faced several challenges.
“It is harder now to reach people for the Lord and the church then it was back then and it wasn’t easy back then, to be honest” said Porinsky.
Porinsky grew up in the city of Wauwatosa, Wisconsin and spent much of his summers at his grandparent’s lake cottage. He, along with his siblings, enjoyed the country atmosphere the cottage provided. Porinsky said he enjoys the country atmosphere of his parsonage in Dexter, but finds it challenging having the church “out in the middle of nowhere”.
Prior to the church location on North Territorial, the congregation worshiped in downtown Dexter from 1944-1956. In 1956, relocated to a new church and parsonage on Baker Road until 1972. At that time a church dedication took place at its current location on North Territorial Road where Porinsky was called upon in 1978 to lead.
Porinsky said a big part of his ministry in the early days included hospital visits. He said today, most hospital stays are on an outpatient basis and there is not the time to make those calls. He also noted he spends more time reaching out via the internet whereas before it was by a phone call.
Porinsky and his wife, Carolyn, have five children and five grandchildren. Now grown, the children spent their early years in the Dexter School Community. Like their father, the children are avid runners and were involved with track and cross-country events in school.
Porinsky said a highlight of his career has been serving shut-ins and the elderly. He remembers having softball teams at the church, many church events over the years and recalls having the Lutheran School serving K-8 before its closure in 1994 due to lack of students. Porinsky said he has performed 212 baptisms, 203 confirmations, 66 weddings and 120 funerals to date. The current congregation consists of approximately 200 members.
Other than preaching the Lord’s word, Porinsky enjoys playing guitar and writing song parodies. At the 40th Anniversary Celebration, Porinsky wrote and performed his parodies of the U of M and MSU fight songs.
When asked if the pastor was a better comedian or musician; long time church member, Jim Jedele, with a laugh agreed Pastor was a better musician.
To find more information on Faith Lutheran Church visit its website at www.faithdexter.com .