Pastor Brad Highum
Pastor Brad Highum was ordained to the ministry in 2007 following a career of more than twenty years in operations and marketing management.
Prior to joining Abiding Love, Brad served his internship and then as mission development pastor at New Life Lutheran Church in Dripping Springs. He served for five years as Minister of Adult Education and Development at Riverbend Church in Austin while studying at the Lutheran Seminary Program in the Southwest, receiving his Master of Divinity degree from Wartburg Theological Seminary. He brings great gifts of spiritual leadership, preaching, teaching and pastoral care to our community. Originally from Minnesota, Brad met and married his Texas sweetheart Nance in Colorado, where their daughters Jesse and Carly were born. Carly and Jesse both make their home in Austin.
I believe spirituality is kinetic, that faith is an intentional lived experience, that what we believe and proclaim must be manifest in our lives. We’re devoted at Abiding Love to helping people discover and live out the faith God is calling them to. Pastor Brad
Denise Alaimo, Business Administrator
Denise Alaimo moved to Austin to go to UT and has never left for more than a couple of months. After teaching high school science (chemistry, physics, biology), she earned an MBA from UT. She worked for the Texas Securities Board for 16 years registering securities offerings, broker/dealers and investment advisors. She has also owned a specialty tax-consulting company. A long-time member of Abiding Love, she is enjoying being a part of this vibrant community. In her spare time, Denise enjoys being with her daughter and son-in-law, two young grandchildren and friends, as well as listening to music, reading, and occasionally hiking.
Terry Carnline, Assistant Children's Center Director
Terry has been in the early childhood field for over 35 years and has spent the last 18 and a half years here at Abiding Love where she enjoys sharing God’s love to our youngest, reach out to their families when they are in need, and be there as support for the teachers. On the weekends, she loves spending time with her children and now (2) granddaughters, playing in her flowerbed and reading.
Gus Sterneman, Director of Worship and Arts
“Dr. Gus” as he is affectionately known, is equally at home on the podium, behind a mixing board, or on the stage. He has degrees in music theory, music history, and instrumental conducting, and a doctorate in opera/musical theatre conducting.
In addition to his work at Abiding Love, Gus also serves as Music Director for the Heart of Texas Chorus in San Marcos, an a capella barbershop chorus. He also works with the Austin Civic Orchestra and Once Ounce Opera. He has taught classes music theory, music history, and music technology, and has been working with the Barbershop Harmony Society developing a series of classes on Liturgical Barbershop.
A life-long pacifist, Gus is a fierce advocate for social justice, gender equality, and LGBTQ+ rights. He enjoys a good pun, but loves a really bad one. He's a multi-instrumentalist with a passion for stagecraft, A/V work, board games, and Lutherie. And coffee. Lots of coffee.
Debbie Tonne, Children’s Center Director
Debbie Tonne has worked in early childhood education since completing her Bachelor of Arts and Texas teaching certification at Howard Payne University in 2000. Prior to coming to Abiding Love in 2012, she spent 12 years at Circle C Child Development Center, starting as a teacher and then moving into an administration role. She loves the joy that comes from being part of a faith-based center, where we can freely share the love of Jesus with families; providing high quality early childhood education; and empowering teachers through quality professional development. During her free time, Debbie enjoys cooking, symphony in the park, traveling, genealogy, time with friends, and her book club.
Dawn Wetzel, Office Administrator
Dawn has served as a church professional since 2002. Before coming to Abiding Love in 2012, she worked in the Round Rock School District, then served as Director of Youth and Family Ministry at Peace Lutheran Church in Austin. She is a graduate of Concordia University, Texas. Dawn enjoys traveling, antique shopping, gardening, entertaining—basically anything that keeps her moving. She and her husband, Daryl, live in Spicewood, Tx, see their family whenever possible, and do their best to enjoy life.