Jim was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1959 to Don and Elaine Weiland. Recognizing the importance of Christian education, Jim's parents sent him to St. John's Lutheran School in Lannon for his elementary education and to Wisconsin Lutheran High School (WLHS) in Milwaukee for his secondary education. Jim graduated from WLHS in 1977.
From 1977 to 1981, Jim attended Northwestern College in Watertown, WI, where he earned his B.A. degree. While attending Northwestern, Jim met his future wife, Sue, daughter of former African missionaries Pastor Richard and Irene Mueller.
From 1981 to 1985, Jim attended Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary (WLS) in Mequon, WI, where he received his Master of Divinity degree. He spent his vicar* year at St. Matthew Ev. Lutheran Church in Benton Harbor, MI. Jim and Sue married in 1982.
Upon graduation from WLS, Jim received a divine call to serve First Evangelical Lutheran Church in Racine, WI. He was ordained into the public ministry on July 5, 1985, and served First Lutheran for 11 years alongside the Reverend Dr. Nathan Pope.
In 1996, the Lord led Jim to accept a divine call to Christ Ev. Lutheran Church in Merrill, WI, where he faithfully served God's people for 22 years. Jim was unexpectedly called home to heaven on January 22, 2018, as a result of injuries caused by an automobile accident.
*a candidate for ordained pastoral ministry, serving in a "vicariate" or internship, usually in the third year of seminary training.
REV. JAMES D. WEILAND
October 13, 1959 - January 22, 2018 (age 58)
The Rev. James “Jim” D. Weiland, age 58, of Merrill, went to be with his Lord and Savior on Monday, January 22, 2018 at the Aspirus Wausau Hospital. He was born on October 13, 1959 to Donald and Elaine (Alonso) Weiland in Milwaukee, WI. Jim attended St. John’s elementary school in Lannon, WI, where he was encouraged to become a pastor. He graduated from Wisconsin Lutheran High School in Milwaukee. He was in many clubs including chess, drama, and student council. He was very involved with wrestling and became the state champion in 1976. Wanting to continue his education, he completed 4 more years at Northwestern College in Watertown, WI and another 4 years at the Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in Mequon, WI. He married Sue Mueller in 1982 and soon after began his ministry at First Evangelical Lutheran Church in Racine, serving his congregation from 1985-1996. He and his family then moved to Merrill, where he has spent the last 22 years serving as the pastor at Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church. Jim was one of the founders of the Wausau Table Tennis Club and was a member of the Tennis League in Merrill. He was an avid bowler, enjoyed martial arts, paintball, disc-golf, and pitching for the church softball team. Jim was truly a servant of the people and a servant of the Lord. His church and his family were his life. He was a very talented and intelligent man, even ministering in German at times. Jim enjoyed the peace of nature and would take in its beauty every chance he had, whether it was kayaking, boating, deer hunting and especially going on one of his many fishing trips. He was easy to be around and was a fun-loving and active person who looked forward to family game nights! Jim loved adventure and going on family vacations, including going to Canada to fish with his sons. He is lovingly remembered as a jokester by his family and was well-known for playing his guitar and story-telling around a campfire. Jim and his family had a cabin in Rhinelander that they called “Wildwood”. He would frequently head to the cabin and take in the peace and quiet that it offered. His focus was always Christ-centered and he instilled that belief in his children. Jim had a kind, gentle soul that will be missed by many.
Jim is survived by his parents: Donald and Elaine Weiland of Fond Du Lac, his wife of 35 years: Sue Weiland of Merrill, sons: James (Karen) Weiland of Rothschild and Brian (Jessica) Weiland of Kronenwetter, daughters: Becky (Patrick) Kluck of Wausau, Christina (Wayne Krutke) Weiland of Merrill and Laura (Ross) Gottschalk of New Ulm, MN, grandchildren: Jimmy, Belle, Gabriel, Grace and Miley, brothers: Donald “Rick” (Cindy) Weiland and Thomas “Tom” (Sue) Weiland, both of Menomonee Falls, WI, sister: Jean Weiland of Menomonee Falls, WI and numerous nieces, nephews and good friends.
Funeral Services for Jim will be held on Monday, January 29, 2018 at 11am at Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church in Merrill. Pastor Nathan Pope will officiate. Visitation will be held on Sunday, January 28, 2018 from 4pm-8pm at Waid Funeral Home, and again on Monday, January 29, 2018 from 10am until the time of the service at the church. Burial will take place at Merrill Memorial Park Cemetery following the service.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made, in Jim’s name, to any of the following organizations: Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church in Merrill, Our Savior’s Lutheran School in Wausau, St. Peter’s Lutheran School in Schofield, Northland Lutheran High School in Mosinee, Martin Luther College in New Ulm, MN, Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in Mequon, WI or Luther Preparatory School in Watertown, WI.
Waid Funeral Home & Cremation Service of Merrill is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences may be made at www.waidfuneral.com.
Service of Christian Funeral for Pastor James D. Weiland