Frine Donadelli – Formed for the Future of the Church
Frine was born in Venezuela. When she was 10 years old, she moved with her mother and sister to Spain. (Her name is pronounced free-nay.) In 2014 Frine moved to central Florida to live with her father and in 2015 moved to Naples to live with her aunt, Angela Vargas, a member of Emmanuel. Although Frine was raised a Catholic, she soon joined her aunt as a member of Emmanuel.
Frine began volunteering with the Emmanuel Community Church (ECC) in 2015. In 2017 she joined the church staff as an administrative assistant with multiple responsibilities. She especially enjoys leading activities focused on children and youth. Although she works primarily with Pastor Jose Lebron, she has also interacted with others from Emmanuel’s staff. She credits Deacon Dee Schleutker with giving her the initial encouragement to follow God’s call and apply to Emmanuel Academies. She says many others have supported her journey including her aunt, Howard Isaacson, Pastor Jose Lebron, his wife, Nieves and the ECC youth themselves. She says these people saw her as a leader called to serve the Church before she believed it herself.
“These people saw her as a leader called to serve the Church before she believed it herself”
In 2018 Frine was one of the first to raise her hand and join Emmanuel Academies’ (EA) 5-Year BA+MDiv program, formed to equip future Lutheran pastors. Frine enrolled at Concordia University – Chicago to study for a Bachelor’s degree in Organizational Management. Emmanuel Academies provides Frine with a full scholarship based on her call to be a pastor, outstanding academic performance and employment with the church. The funds come from the generous donors to EA and a grant from the Kern Family Foundation. Frine is also working towards her Master of Divinity degree with the continued financial support of Emmanuel Academies as she follows the pathway to ELCA ordination.
Frine says that she is intimidated by public speaking but has faith that God will give her the courage to grow into her ministry and gain the confidence to address larger groups. Frine sees her mission as encouraging Emmanuel to add more activities for and to grow our church through the youth and young adults. She believes that keeping these young people involved in our church and serving our surrounding community will strengthen the foundation of their faith and serve them all their lives.