Rev. Michael and Karen Schempf

Serving the Lord in Sierra Leone



The Rev. Michael and Karen Schempf serve the Lord through The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) as missionaries in Sierra Leone. Michael teaches theology classes at Christ Evangelical Lutheran Theological Seminary (CELTS) in Jembe. CELTS is committed to the faithful and confessional education of men to serve as evangelists and pastors. Michael’s work supports Word and Sacrament ministry through the development of faithful curriculum and teachers. Michael and Karen also work closely with the leadership and members of Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church of Sierra Leone (CELC-SL) to partner in outreach and the expansion of theological education in Sierra Leone and the region.

Michael was born in Detroit, Mich., and his home congregation is Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Watertown, Wis. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Concordia College, Ann Arbor, Mich. (now Concordia University, Ann Arbor). He received his Master of Divinity degree from Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind. Prior to becoming a missionary, Michael served congregations in Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin. He also served as a VA hospital chaplain and with Bethesda Lutheran Communities. Michael enjoys cycling, hiking, snow skiing and traveling.

Karen was born in Fort Wayne, Ind., and her home congregation is also Good Shepherd Lutheran Church. She received an Associate of Arts degree from Concordia College (now University) in Ann Arbor and a Bachelor of Science degree in Special Education from the University of Saint Francis in Fort Wayne. She has served at two different Lutheran schools. Karen enjoys spending time with Michael, connecting with family and friends, outdoor activities, and sharing Jesus and His love with children.


Please pray for the Schempfs as they live and serve in Sierra Leone. Pray for their health and safety as they travel many miles. Ask God to give Michael wisdom and insight as he builds relationships with seminarians, faculty and staff at the seminary. Pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to draw more faith-filled men to the seminary in answer to the growing needs of the church throughout Sierra Leone. Pray for Michael and Karen’s four adult children — Andrew, Philip, Sarah and Christina — and their families as they live and work in the United States. Let us give thanks to God for Michael and Karen’s service in this part of the world.

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Additional Information

  • Birthdays:
    • Michael - March 7
    • Karen - March 2
  • Wedding Anniversary: May 17
  • Home District: South Wisconsin

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