Our Mission

Our Mission is to invite people on a journey to become fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ.

What We Believe

Statement of Faith (Brief)

Jesus Christ is the head of our church and the only way to salvation.  We believe and strive to live by the instructions of God, which are accurately recorded in the words of scripture.  The Holy Spirit guides our decisions and shows us the ways of God.  We firmly believe in the call to serve, the need for community and the local church as God’s plan for redemption.


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How We Do It

Our Discipleship Process shows the usual steps people take at Cornerstone to become fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ. Most people come first to our Sunday morning service where we do our best to create an environment where we all can encounter God. The next step after this is to join a Life Group to further involve people in community. After this is usually when people serve in a ministry to demonstrate their love to those in our church and our La Crosse community. People in our community eventually find themselves investing in their friends, neighbors, families, and coworkers to bring them to experience God’s love and grow His Kingdom. Wherever the starting point, all of this is built upon a foundation of spiritual practices such as Bible reading and prayer.

Our Core Values

We believe that Christ followers should manifest authenticity and yearn for continuous growth.
We believe that communication is essential for a real and personal relationship with God.
We believe that all people matter to God and therefore ought to matter to the church.
We believe that life change happens best in small groups (Life Groups). This includes community, growth, loving support, and accountability.
We believe that a church should operate as a unified community of servants with men and women learning and stewarding their spiritual gifts.
We believe worship should be the expression of a lifestyle of personal worship.
We believe that the church should be culturally relevant while remaining doctrinally pure.
We desire to be an active part of what God is doing throughout the Greater La Crosse area—to see the spiritual climate of the entire Greater La Crosse area be changed by the power of God.
We believe that Christ’s command to “love our neighbor” calls each of us to demonstrate the richness of Christ’s love to our local, national, and global communities by using our God-given resources to bring blessing and restoration to others in need.

Our Staff

Ben Newman
Ben NewmanSenior Pastor
Ben has been at Cornerstone since 2007. He graduated with a Master’s of Divinity degree from Columbia International University in South Carolina. He is married to his lovely wife Sue and has two children: Karis and Timothy. When he’s not working, you’ll find him spending time with his wife and two kids, backpacking or watching college football.
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Lea Kendhammer
Lea KendhammerAdministrative Assistant
Lea graduated from WWTC in 1981 with a degree in Computer Operations. She was married to her husband Mark the summer of 1981. She has been with Cornerstone since 2001. They have two married sons and two grandchildren who live in North Pole, Alaska! Lea enjoys kayaking, hiking and tropical vacations.
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Courtney Smith
Courtney SmithAssociate Pastor of Youth Ministries
Courtney Smith started working with Cornerstone Community Church in 2016. She is a graduate of North Central University in Minneapolis, MN. She earned her degree in Youth Ministries. Courtney married Max on June 14, 2014. They cannot wait to own a dog. She enjoys hanging out with friends and family, shooting hoops, doing anything outdoors and loves ultimate frisbee, flag football, and tennis! If she isn’t trying to crush you at a sport ;-), you will find her working on a puzzle, reading or asking you to play a board game.
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Max Smith
Max SmithAssociate Pastor of Worship Arts
Max started working with Cornerstone Community Church in 2016. He is a graduate of North Central University in Minneapolis, MN. Max earned his degree in Recording Arts with a focus on Worship Leading. He married Courtney on June 14, 2014. They are both huge movie buffs and are willing to take on any movie trivia challenge. Max is somewhat of a comic book nerd, so if you love anything from DC or Marvel, you will have fun with him. He loves doing wedding photography with his wife and any other type of clients. Above all, Max enjoys playing guitar and loves jamming in groups. He is always looking for talented musicians who love the Lord to join the worship team! so don’t be shy if you are interested!
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Our Overseers

Ben Newman
Ben NewmanOverseer & Senior Pastor
Ben has been at Cornerstone since 2007. He graduated with a Master’s of Divinity degree from Columbia International University in South Carolina. He is married to his lovely wife Sue and has two children: Karis and Timothy. When he’s not working, you’ll find him spending time with his wife and two kids, backpacking or watching college football.
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Chad Wedan
Chad WedanOverseer
After attending Cornerstone during college, Chad and his family moved to Oconomowoc, WI for a few years, but returned to the La Crosse area in 2013. He is married to his lovely wife Jill and they have six children: Isaiah, Naomi, Hannah, Elliana, Lacy, and Mathias.
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Brandy Cleveland
Brandy ClevelandOverseer
Brandy has attended Cornerstone for many years and served in a variety of roles, including teaching in our Leadership Academy. In 2015 she became an Overseer. She is married to Steven and has three children: Steven James, Janet, and Joyce.
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Darcy McCallson
Darcy McCallsonOverseer
Darcy is a long time attender of Cornerstone and faithful worship team member, serving on the media team for our Sunday services. She and her husband have traveled to South Africa on a short term missions trip. Darcy enjoys board games with her family and sewing. She became an Overseer in 2016.
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Steve Wolfgram
Steve WolfgramOverseer
Steve was an original member of the launch team of Cornerstone back in 1996. He has a passion for music and has played bass and drum set in the band for years. He became an Overseer in 2016. He is married to his lovely wife Mandi and has a daughter, Katrina.
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Courtney Smith
Courtney SmithAssociate Pastor of Youth Ministries
Courtney Smith started working with Cornerstone Community Church in 2016. She is a graduate of North Central University in Minneapolis, MN. She earned her degree in Youth Ministries. Courtney married Max on June 14, 2014. They cannot wait to own a dog. She enjoys hanging out with friends and family, shooting hoops, doing anything outdoors and loves ultimate frisbee, flag football, and tennis! If she isn’t trying to crush you at a sport ;-), you will find her working on a puzzle, reading or asking you to play a board game.
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Our Ministry Leaders

Jon Zlabek
Jon ZlabekExecutive Director
Jon began attending Cornerstone right after it launched in 1997. He has had a variety of roles including Overseer, Life Group Leader and Coach, and Finance Team. He became Executive Director in 2015. He has a lovely wife Michelle and teenage daughters, Cassie and Caitlin.
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Shanu Kothari
Shanu KothariLife Group Ministry Leader
Shanu came to Cornerstone’s first public service in 1997. He has served in several roles over the years, including Overseer and is our longest tenured Life Group Leader. He became Life Group Ministry Leader in 2015. He is married to his lovely wife Peg and has two teenage daughters, Brittany and Samantha.
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Steve Arnold
Steve ArnoldCollege Ministry Leader
Steve has been at Cornerstone since his college days in early 2000s. He has a passion for seeing college-age students connect in the local church. He is married to his lovely wife Liz and they have three children: Clarence, Winston and Gillian.
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Suzie Pence
Suzie PenceKIDZone Ministry Leader
Suzie has been at Cornerstone since her college days in early 2000s. She began working with the children shortly thereafter, and has been Ministry Leader since 2014. She is married to Jeremy and they have two children: Samuel and Sophia.
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Kasey Crawford
Kasey CrawfordCompassion Ministry Leader
Kasey began attending Cornerstone during college and has a heart for those who are vulnerable. She connects individual and group passions to tangible ways to serve in the La Crosse community. She is married to Mike and has two children, Kinsley and Keaton.
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John & Maurita Warrick
John & Maurita WarrickGuest Services Ministry Leaders
John and Maurita’s journey towards being fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ started some time ago. John had not attended church for the better part of 30 years. When he met his wife Maurita, she helped him with a longing to deepen his faith. They found Cornerstone in 2016 and since then have both grown in their relationship with Jesus. They love being involved with a church that is passionate about reaching people for Christ.
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Faith

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