A Message from our Pastor



(Where football meets church theology)
Now that we’re in football season, a more lighthearted message this month.  Enjoy!
1. DRAFT CHOICE:  The decision is to sit close to a heating vent in the winter, or the air-conditioning vent in the summer.


2. END ZONE:  Sitting in the back pew all by yourself.


3. THREE POINT STANCE:  Being present for worship, on time, and with your Bible in hand.


4. PASS INTERCEPTION:  What mama does when she sees her son Billy trying to pass a note to Susie in church.


5. IN THE POCKET:  Where some potential church offerings can be found.


6. TWO MINUTE WARNING:  When the council president points to his watch if the pastor’s sermon is going too long.


7. QB SNEAK:  When the council president slips into the worship service late.


8. BENCH WARMER:  An inactive member.


9. FUMBLE:  A lousy sermon!


10. PUNT:  What the pastor does when the sermon isn’t working.


11. EXTRA POINT:  What you receive when you tell the pastor his sermon was a touchdown.


12. CHEERLEADERS:  Ladies who compliment the pastor on his sermon.


13. QUARTERBACK:  What some worshipers want when they put 50 cents in the offering plate.


14. TACKLE:  What an alert usher does when a child tries to sneak out of the service.


15. RUNNING BACKS:  Children who keep running back and forth, in and out of the service.


16. TOUCHDOWN:  When attendance and giving records are broken.


17. WIDE RECEIVERS:  Overweight ushers who squeeze down the aisle while receiving the offering.


18. PENALTY FLAG:  What the church gets when its members stay home.


19. ILLEGAL MOTION:  Leaving before the final blessing.


20. SUPER BOWL CHAMPION:  A church doing the will of God!


God’s Peace,                                                                                                                  

Pastor Ed                

Edward Kropa  "Pastor Ed"



The Rev. Pastor Kropa, known as Pastor Ed to his congregation, spent part of his youth raised in Freehold Township.   In 1967 when he was 11 years old, he and his family became charter members of our newly formed Hope Lutheran Church. 

“During this period, I regularly served as an acolyte and was involved in the church youth group.  In fact, it was while growing up at Hope that slowly but surely, I began to sense a call to ministry " 

"While attending college, I began to explore this possibility further.  First by taking courses like public speaking, and by coming home on weekends to teach Sunday school.  Finally, when I could no longer "talk myself out of it," I applied and was accepted to Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, Ohio. "

It was at Trinity that Pastor earned his Masters of Divinity and in 1985 returned to Hope Lutheran Church, where he was ordained.  He later went on to earn a Doctorate in Ministry at Drew University.

During his 32 years of pastoral leadership Kropa and his wife Jeanette have served 6 churches & raised 3 daughters.  He is a excited to be back in Freehold, reuniting with friends and family and embracing his new congregation.  

“Not only am I coming back to my church, I am returning to my community.  Returning to HOPE is coming home.”

Pastor was "called" to service on June 11th, began his leadership role in early August, and was installed as our new Pastor at a ceremonial worship service on September 24, 2017.  

Pastor Ed and family completed their inaugural year at HOPE.  They have embraced the return, are loving NJ and are happy to call it HOME.  

This past year, Pastor and his wife Jeanette welcomed the birth of their 1st grandchild and embraced 2019 with their newly expanded family!

MEET Our Church Council

PRESIDENT - Michael Della Rosa

VICE PRESIDENT - Sharryn Papinchak 

TREASURER -   John Drager

SECRETARY - Debbie Unger

Education  -  Janet Creech

Fellowship  - Tom Landes

                              Michelle Verdino

Maintenance Stefan Martinsen

                                -  Matthew Sprunger

Outreach  -  Bill Siefert 

Youth Ministry  -  Tara Zigler

Youth  -  Michael Woods

We are looking to fill the Support Commission Coordinator roll
Reports to the Church Council and provides Stewardship, Skills and Enlistment support.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities: 

1) Convene a meeting to plan a Stewardship Program, and execute it during the 4th Quarter.

  • a) Report results to Council at its December meeting

2) Develop or revise the Time and Abilities Form

  • a) Distribution and collection of form during the 4th Quarter
  • b) Ensure that new members of the congregation receive a copy
  • c) Maintain our database of member's skills and interests, and match them to the activities, needs and structure of the Church Council

3) Maintain a support bulletin board and provide Volunteer Ministries coordination.

4) Provide for new member orientation to the Stewardship Plan for Giving and the Time and Abilities Form.

5) Develop, maintain and publish a summary of Church Committees and their membership, for use by the members of the Church Council.

6) Consider special appeals that do not fall under other Council ministries and make recommendations to the Council (e.g. World Hunger, ELCA appeals, etc.).