The Rev. Jen Rude was named the University Pastor at Pacific Lutheran University in August, 2016.
Before coming to PLU Jen served as the program director for Extraordinary Lutheran Ministries, a national support and advocacy organization for LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and/or queer) pastors and seminarians. For eight years Jen served as an Outreach Minister with The Night Ministry in Chicago, where she provided pastoral care, crisis response and advocacy in an interfaith and multicultural setting for street-based young adults. In 2007, Jen was extraordinary ordained at Resurrection Lutheran Church in Chicago and served there as Associate Pastor. After policy change at the national level removed barriers for partnered LGBTQ clergy, Jen was received onto the ELCA roster in 2011.
Jen received her Masters of Divinity from Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, CA and her B.A. in Religion with Gender Studies and Psychology minors from ELCA-affiliated Augustana University in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Jen is a member of Proclaim, the professional community for publicly identified LGBTQ Lutheran rostered leaders and those preparing for rostered leadership. Proclaim is a program of Extraordinary Lutheran Ministries.
Outside of work, Jen enjoys hiking, cooking, brewing homemade kombucha, the Enneagram, reading about minimalism/simple living, tending to her composting worms and exploring Tacoma and the Pacific Northwest with her spouse Deb.
As part of her role as University Pastor, Pastor Jen leads Sunday worship and Wednesday chapel each week on campus, and seeks to meet students, faculty and staff wherever they are on their faith or spiritual journey.