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1701 Russell Blvd
Davis, CA 95616    (530) 756-5500

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Church Staff

Daniel R. Smith


I was born in 1973 in the Los Angeles area and spent the first four years of my life in Iowa, where my father attended seminary. The son of a pastor, I grew up in Oakland and then Davis, attending Davis High School (class of 1991). I majored in Biochemistry/Cell Biology at the University of California San Diego (class of 1995) and then studied at the University of Hamburg, Germany during the 1996-97 academic year, where I became fluent in German. While I was there I became engaged to my wife, Nele, a native of Germany. We were married in May, 1998, and were thrilled by the births of our two sons, Jakob (2002) and Lukas (2004).

Feeling a call to the ordained ministry, I entered Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary where I earned Master of Divinity and Master of Arts in Systematic Theology degrees in 2000, writing my thesis on the theology of the cross in the writings of Martin Luther and Søren Kierkegaard. I was ordained in 2000, and my first call was to King of Glory Lutheran Church in Orange County, CA (2000-2004), where I was Associate Pastor for Discipling Ministry, responsible for adult education and small groups. After that, I accepted a call from Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in San Carlos, CA in 2004 where I served until 2010 before beginning my ministry at Lutheran Church of the Incarnation in February of 2010.

In addition to pastoral ministry, I am also an academic theologian. I completed a Ph.D. in Systematic and Philosophical Theology at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, CA in 2013, writing a dissertation entitled: Toward a Lutheran Theology of Nature: An Ecological Ethics of the Cross. One of my great concerns and passions is helping the church go green and move toward a more sustainable way of living with the planet. I am also a lover of jazz, an avid reader, jogger, a guitar player and a sports nut. I love children, especially my two boys.

Leena Ou
Office Administrator

Office Administrator
My name is Leena Ou. I was born in 1998 in Stockton, CA and have lived there my whole life. I attended Ronald E. McNair High School (Class of 2016) and currently attend UC Davis as a second-year Comparative Literature major. My plans for the future include becoming a teacher and returning to my hometown. Stockton wasn’t the best place to grow up but it gave me perseverance, ambition, and a passion to give back to my community. I was very fortunate to be surrounded by people (from family, friends, and teachers) who constantly encouraged me to follow my dreams; I hope to be that person for someone else one day. When I am not in school or work, I enjoy listening to music from the 80’s, watching movies/reading books and writing about them on my blog, or spending time with my dog, Bagel. My favorite quote is by Ernest Hemingway: “The world is a fine place and worth fighting for”-- I try to live by this every day.
Lindsey Burns
Lay Youth &
Family Minister
I was born in 1979 and raised in the Sacramento area untilI graduation from Casa Roble High School in 1997. As a high school student I became involved in the Sierra Pacific Synod Youth Committee and discovered my love of working with other youth forging their faith journeys. I also spent a great deal of time serving my church musically through singing in choir, playing piano for the children’s choir and accompanying different groups on the flute. In the fall of 1997 I moved to Davis California where I attended UCDavis majoring in History. I continued my love of music by playing in the UC Davis Marching Band and taking as many music classes as I could. It was at UC Davis where I met my husband Travis and we were engaged a couple months before I graduated in the summer of 2001.

After graduation I entered into the management trainee program through Enterprise Rent-a-Car and worked my way up to Regional Sales Executive. During my almost ten years at Enterprise I gave birth to my daughter Reagan (2007) and my son Ethan (2010). After I re-entered the workforce from my second maternity leave I felt my heart pulling me in a new direction.

While worshiping at Advent in Citrus Heights the need for a Youth Director was publicized. Because of the wonderful experiences I had in youth group growing up and the great church leaders I had, I knew that this was what I had been looking for.

I started working with the High School and Junior High groups in December of 2010 and haven’t looked back.

Being a youth leader allows me to work with great kids and parents and has given me a chance to see how our Lord works through young people.

In my free time I play and teach piano as well as run around after my two kids on the soccer and baseball fields. I also enjoy spending as much time out doors as I can camping, hiking or on the lake.

Cagdas Dönmezer
Interim Worship Musician

Bio coming soon.

Anthony Lien
Choir Director
The Holy Spirit is alive and at work in the worship and music life of LCI and I am excited to be a part of it.  I have served as Choir Director here since January 2003 and have been overwhelmed by the blessings I have received.

I hold a Ph.D. in musicology (UC Davis) and masters degrees in both choral conducting (UC Irvine) and theology (Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary), and I bring to LCI a diverse background in Lutheran theology, ministry, and music.  I have conducted junior high, high school, collegiate, and professional choral and instrumental ensembles, taught students of all ages, and served as an adjudicator for vocal and instrumental competitions.

If you are interested in joining LCI's choir or have any questions about our music ministry, feel free to email me at, or simply show up at any one of our Thursday evening (7:00 pm) rehearsals.  Auditions and music reading skills are NOT required.  During the summer there is no evening rehearsal; instead we meet one hour before worship each week to prepare a song for that service.  Please visit the LCI Worship & Music page for more information.

Cathy Young
Nursery Care Lead

I was raised in Pennsylvania and attended Cabrini College.  I taught middle school English for two years before moving to Davis.  After teaching K-12 in Vacaville for another 11 years, I resigned to assume caregiving responsibilities.  Recently I have worked as a nature educator with Camp Putah, Explorit, Yolo Basin Foundation, and the UC Davis Arboretum, as well as a nursery caregiver at the Episcopal Church of St. Martin.

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