Our Story

Real Hope was planted in 2000 by Glenn Herschberger.  For 15 years we met in the Lake Mills High School auditorium until we built our current location in 2015. After 15 years, we have continued to grow into a church that is committed to loving God, loving people, and serving the world around us. Disciples are truly being made here in Lake Mills and it is our prayer that we will continue to reach out into Lake Mills and surrounding communities with a message of hope and salvation through Jesus Christ. We invite you to join us and become a part of HIStory. 


Staff & Leadership

We have a passion for people, our community, and our world. We love to do what Ephesians 4:12 tells us, "equip the saints for the work of ministry". True ministry is not solely our job, but yours. Contact anyone listed below to find out how you are equipped by God to serve others. 

  • Craig Legel

    Lead pastor

    Craig has been pastoring at Real Hope since 2005. After serving as our youth and worship pastor for 5 years he took over as lead pastor in 2010. Craig is married to Kari and together they have 4 kiddos. Craig has a love for the local church and helping to make true disciple-makers that love God passionately and desire to serve others and share with them the hope of the Gospel.


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  • Russell Thomas

    Pastor of family discipleship

    Russell has been on staff since 2015 when he returned back to the states from full time missions work in Russia working with Cru. Russell and his wife Sarah have 5 kiddos. Russell's passion is to help disciples make disciples, and help them grow in their desire for the Gospel through a deeper walk with Christ and greater desire for His Word. 

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  • Landon flick

    Youth and connections director

    Landon has been on staff since 2019. He began as an intern and then once he graduated college came on full time as our youth and connections director. Landon just got married to his sweet wife Bekah in August, 2021. Landon's passion is helping youth discover the good news of the Gospel and helping them grow into valuable parts of the body of Christ. He also loves connecting with people to help them discover the gifts God has placed on their lives. 


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  • Bethany Weavers

    Worship & music Director

    Bethany came on staff in the Fall of 2021 after serving in a volunteer music role for a few years. Bethany and her husband Paul have 3 kiddos. Bethany loves music and is thankful she gets to lead the congregation most weeks in worship through singing. She is passionate about helping us experience true Biblical worship. 


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  • Sherri Elsner

    Administrative Director

    Sherri came on staff in the Fall of 2021 after many years working as an Admin Assistant in the healthcare field. Sherri and her husband Wally have 3 sons, and a daughter-in-law, and 2 grandchildren. Sherri loves to do everything to the best of her abilities for God's glory!

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Real Hope Elders

Along with our two full time staff pastors, we also have three non-staff elders. Together the five of them work as a team to oversee and shepherd our church. If you'd like to email all the elders together CLICK HERE. Otherwise you can email them individually below. 

  • Craig legel

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  • Russell Thomas

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  • Steve Schnaidt

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  • Kyle Wollin

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  • Scott Pollard

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