On January 14, 2021, Concordia University Ann Arbor (CUAA) announced its 2020 Special Awards Recipients. The Outstanding Alumnus Award honors graduates of Concordia for reflecting in their lives and careers the values upon which the university was founded. The 2020 award recipient was our beloved Pat Maier, wife of Michigan District President Rev. Dr. David P. E. Maier.
Patricia “Pat” Kemmerling Maier is a 1977 graduate of Concordia Junior College, Ann Arbor. A pastor’s wife and former Lutheran educator, Pat met her husband David on campus. She has been blessed to serve the Lord in the many ministries of their churches and schools in Michigan and Illinois. Most recently, as wife of the Michigan District President, she values the opportunity to connect with ministry wives and to help plan The Katie, a yearly retreat (even if it’s virtual) for their encouragement. She has been active in planning and presenting at other retreats, conferences and women’s events, including the Camp Arcadia Women’s Retreats, Women’s Leadership Institute, and the Best Practices for Ministry conferences.
Pat enjoys writing, drawing, and speaking to inspire others in their walk with Jesus. As co-founder of Visual Faith Ministry, she believes in the importance of applying educational research to faith learning by creating resources as well as teaching and writing about visual faith practices that equip and encourage all ages during focused time in prayer and God’s Word. Connie Denninger, co-founder of Visual Faith Ministry, says “Working with Pat Maier in the founding of Visual Faith Ministry has been one of my life’s greatest blessings. Her humble heart and gentle spirit for serving others belies the great ‘hidden’ artistic talent that has come into the light. This gift has served well to point others to God’s Light in His Word as she quietly leads and directs to Him. Whether we share stories of mothering, ministry, or life in the neighborhood, she always reflects the heart of Jesus.”
Pat is a collaborator and artist for The Visual Church Year, a collection of worship resources which follow the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) Lectionary readings. A published artist, Pat completed a series of margin art for The Enduring Word Bible by Concordia Publishing House, as well as several illustrations for recent hymn journals by Next Step Press. She believes that the creative use of language and art—when connected with God’s Word—can touch the heart, promote understanding, and spark joy.
Pat and her husband enjoy spending time with their four grown children and their families (which include five grandchildren) here in Michigan and while vacationing in Montana. Her ongoing focus is to spend time each day in God’s Word, connect with the people God places in her life each day, and to find peace in the realization and reality of His amazing grace in all circumstances.
An Ode to Pat Maier
(written by Debbie Kasper, a member of the committee that plans The Katie retreat, and a good friend of Pat’s)
Whether we see you on the shores at Camp Arcadia detailing women’s retreats,
wrapping your prayers around your family in times of challenge and celebration,
or disinfecting an apartment for a friend who has cancer,
Your helpful heart stands out as witness of your walk with Jesus.
Whether your art work is published in a new Bible,
We see you teaching others in a workshop or co-leading a trip to Israel,
or even when you use your spare moments to help a friend “fancify” name tags for a wedding,
Your talents and gifts stand out as witness of your walk with Jesus.
Whether we are staying up too late at “The KATIE” talking and praying,
preparing a meal together,
or you are dragging me off to Sweetwater donuts,
Your friendship stands out as witness of your walk with Jesus.
Pat, you stand out in many ways … It is only fitting that you are receiving the “Outstanding” Alumnus Award from CUAA
as witness of your walk with Jesus.
Photos by Elisa Schulz/Michigan District, LCMS