Faith at Friendship Village


A smiling pastor standing at a pulpit at the Friendship Village chapel.
Resort-style retirement communities in St. Louis.

Faith at Friendship Village

Your Daily Connection to Encouraging Words

Since our founding in 1975, faith in Christ has been the chief motivating factor for all we do. To better meet the needs of our residents, Friendship Village provides for the services of dedicated chaplain teams on both campuses. Those teams present regular worship services, Bibles studies, prayer gatherings, hospital visits, grief support and more. They also and coordinate with area churches and ministries. Friendship Village places a very high value on the faith traditions of each resident.

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Meet the Friendship Village Faith Team

Jim Savage, Chaplain

Jim Savage


Born and raised in Wilmington, Delaware, Jim graduated from the University of Delaware with a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry and biology. After spending three years as a captain in the U.S. Army, he graduated from the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, with a Master of Divinity degree to prepare for the ministry to which God called him.

Jim pastored the Cross Keys Baptist Church in Florissant, Missouri, for 20 years and served on the board of directors of Friendship Village for 18 years. He has been the Chaplain at Friendship Village Sunset Hills since October 2007, where he is affectionately known as "the village preacher.”

Jim is married to his lovely wife, Sandy. They have three daughters and seven grandchildren, all of whom live in the St. Louis area.

Burt Campbell, Chaplain

Burt Campbell


With over 30 years of previous pastoral care experience, Burt joined Friendship Village in 2017. He is an ordained minister through Open Bible Churches where he has served as a District Director while pastoring his own congregation. Before moving to the St. Louis area, Burt worked with numerous denominations and churches as president of his local association of churches.

For Burt, the best part of about ministry is helping people find vibrancy and meaning in their relationship with Christ.

He is married and a proud parent to three grown children. He loves spending time connecting with people and hearing their stories. He has a passion for reading, playing the guitar, studying history, and taking part in miniature war-gaming.

Burt completed his undergraduate studies at Oral Roberts University and pursued his graduate work through Regent University. He currently serves on the national board of Open Bible Churches and is a contributing author to We Believe: Core Truths for Christian Living, Open Bible’s official church resource for teaching core foundations of the faith.

Patricia Lee, Assistant Chaplain

Patricia Lee

Assistant Chaplain

Patricia Lee joined the Chaplain’s Department in the summer of 2007 after serving 6 months as a seminary intern from Covenant Theological Seminary. Prior to receiving the Master of Divinity degree she had also earned a master’s degree in counseling in 2004, and has been a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Missouri.

In addition to providing personal pastoral care and counseling, her ministry includes worship planning, Bible teaching, music ministry with the Chapel Choir, caregivers and bereavement support, as well as assisting Chaplain Savage in certain administrative logistics. Together they recruit and mentor seminary interns and invest in developing the Chaplain’s team.

Born and raised in Hong Kong, Patricia came to the United States as a teenager when her father, an Anglican priest, was called by the Episcopal Diocese of Northern California to pastor a Chinese congregation in San Francisco. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Biochemistry in U. C. Berkeley and continued on to complete a PhD degree in immunology.

After getting married to Po Sun Lee in 1978 and settling in Jacksonville Florida, she worked as a certified medical technologist and taught for a season in the community college, then devoted 14 years to raise their four children, three daughters and a son. The family relocated to St. Louis in 1988.

Patricia’s training and life experiences have prepared her to serve this community. She takes great joy in fulfilling God’s calling with her gifts.

Sam San, Associate Chaplain

Sam San

Associate Chaplain

Born in Taiwan, raised in the Dominican Republic, and having lived on both the East Coast and in the Midwest, Sam has a deep appreciation for cultural diversity. Sam also has a diverse professional background as he started his training in mathematics. After spending 16 years in Information Technology, Sam obtained a degree in marriage and family therapy and worked as a family counselor for underprivileged children in Washington, DC.

In 2012, Sam answered His calling to vocational ministry by attending Covenant Theological Seminary from where he holds his Master’s in Divinity. Sam joined our Chaplain Department in 2016 because of his passion for senior citizens.

Prior to coming to Friendship Village, Sam volunteered with the Light of Christ Chinese Senior Activities Center (Olivette) for many years, where he still serves as their singing instructor. At Friendship Village Sunset Hills, Sam is often known affectionately as “Sam San the Hand-flute Man” because he loves to share his musical gifts with those who enjoy singing. Sam is married to his amazing wife and ministry partner, Stephanie, and as of now (2020), they have been blessed with a 9-year old son and a 1-year old daughter.

Mary Meirink, Associate Chaplain

Mary Meirink

Associate Chaplain

Mary joined Friendship Village in 2019. She graduated from Saint Louis University with a MA in Counseling and completed four units of Clinical Pastoral Education with Residency at Lutheran Senior Services. She brings twenty years full-time service in Congregational Care and Prayer Ministry.

Mary is a licensed minister with Open Bible Churches, a Spiritual Director with the Evangelical Spiritual Directors Association, and a Licensed Professional Counselor in Missouri.

In her free time, you will find Mary taking amateur photos, writing, singing, playing guitar, and leading and attending retreats.

"Loving God and loving people is what it’s all about."