Joe Garber, Lead Pastor

Joe Garber serves as one of the two pastors at Byerland Mennonite Church. He has a deep desire to see all generations grow together and to love one another as disciples of Jesus. His teaching and preaching are firmly rooted in the Word of God, and flow from a heart that depends on the leading of the Holy Spirit. He has a passion to see people drink deeply from the “well”, to be forgiven, and to forgive as the Word of God is applied to daily life.

Pastor Joe was born and raised on a dairy farm in Lancaster County, PA. His ministry experience has led him to serve in Bronx, NY, Lancaster City, PA, Tanzania, East Africa, Albania, and currently at Byerland Church. His ministry education has included Rosedale Bible College and Eastern Mennonite Seminary. He is currently enrolled in a Master of Arts in Ministry at Evangelical Seminary. Pastor Joe has been a bi-vocational pastor since 1996 working as a dairy farmer and more recently doing landscaping when he is not serving the church and the community. He is married to Yvonne (Leaman) Garber (since 1984). They have three adult children, of which two are married and reside in Lancaster County, PA. Joe & Yvonne are blessed with three grandsons. Our interests include loving grandparenting, bicycle riding together, traveling, global mission awareness. They currently serve as LMC International Partner Delegate to the Tanzania Mennonite Church.


Jay Hess, Associate Pastor

Pastor HessAs Associate Pastor at Byerland Church, Pastor Jay’s goal is to see individuals lives intersect with the gospel of Jesus Christ, to bring them to an understanding of who they really are, and by God’s grace who they can be. Pastor Jay has a  deep passion to see people experience the transforming power of Jesus Christ in their lives, just as he is experiencing it. As Jay will proclaim, “God is not done with either one of us yet.”

He was born and raised on a farm in Lancaster County, PA. In his upbringing, he was very active in church and has held many leadership roles in the area of youth ministry, evangelism, and community service projects. His ministry training includes one year of STEP training through Eastern Mennonite University. Pastor Jay to this day continues to farm on the same farm he was raised on. He has been a pastor at Byerland Church since October of 2013. He is married to Beth and they have four children. His hobbies include hunting, hiking and exploring new places.


Denny Dagen, Elder

Denny is Elder of the Financial / Maintenance Team and Care Fellowship Team. Denny identifies himself as a sinner, saved by faith, through the mercy and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.  He longs for others to experience the saving grace of Jesus, and to continue to grow in their relationship with Christ. Denny is co-owner of a plumbing and heating business.  He has a Master Plumbing License and has been working in the trade for 40 years.  He likes the outdoors and likes to ride bicycle and hunt.  He enjoys vacationing with his best friend, wife Kathy.

Kathy & Denny have been married since 1985.  They have attended Byerland Church from birth.  After a ten year period away from Byerland, they returned in response to a calling in 1996.  They have two adult daughters who live in the Lancaster area.  Both are married and they have been blessed with two granddaughters.  

As Denny & Kathy experience God’s healing and grace in their own marriage, they long to offer hope and encouragement to all marriages.

Sheldon Hoover, Elder

Sheldon is Elder of the Mission and Evangelism Team as well as the Worship and Prayer Team. It is from a humble heart of gratefulness that Sheldon serves the Bride of Christ, the Church. He finds joy in lifting the arms of those he serves under just as Aaron and Hur held up the arms of Moses in Exodus chapter 17.

He and his wife Mindi have served the body of Christ over the last 20 years in various ways: Children’s ministry, administrative assistance, and cross cultural ministry in Uganda, East Africa. Sheldon graduated from Elim Bible Institute with a certificate of Biblical Studies with a focus in Pastoral Ministry. Mindi is on staff at LMC(Lancaster Mennonite Conference). Sheldon works for a swine production management company and enjoys interacting with his clients. Together, Sheldon and Mindi continue to parent their 5 children through the rigors of life and enjoy evening sunset walks together as they catch up on each others day.