Four area churches need a new pastor after theirs was recently arrested for an alleged sex crime that occurred in Ohio.
Steven P. Woyen, 46, of Albert Lea was taken into custody by Freeborn County authorities on a warrant issued April 16 in Ohio for sexual battery, a third-degree felony crime.
Last January, Woyen was featured in a local newspaper story when he was hired as the pastor for Bricelyn Lutheran; North Blue Earth Lutheran; Our Savior’s Lutheran, Kiester; and Trinity Lutheran, located south of Kiester in Iowa.
A member of one of the congregations confirms that Woyen is no longer their pastor and believes there may be a search under way for a replacement.
Woyen was booked into the Freeborn County Jail after being arrested for being a fugitive of justice and later transported to the Tuscarawas County Jail in Ohio.
According to a news report, a Tuscarawas County Grand Jury indicted Woyen on three counts of sexual battery that allegedly occurred between 2008 and 2011.
Woyen reportedly engaged in sexual conduct with a minor who attended or was a member of First Lutheran Church of Strasburg when he was its pastor.
Since the Ohio allegations surfaced, Woyen has submitted his resignation as a Lutheran pastor.