Mike Whitaker

Lead Pastor

Howdy folks! I'm Mike, and I'm the founding pastor of The Connection. I landed in the area in the fall of 2018, and am thrilled to call Edwardsville-Glen Carbon my home. I love this place, and may or may not have shed a tear when I found out I was only 25 minutes from Busch Stadium. I have helped churches begin new ventures throughout my time in ministry in both Colorado and Illinois, and love consulting with other pastors and congregations on how to start new things for new people, as well. Some say I would talk to a coffee cup if it would listen, so feel free to give me a holler!  I'm passionate about helping others know the hope and peace I've found in my relationship with Jesus Christ, so ask me questions, I'd love to chat! And when I'm not out and about enjoying all this community has to offer, I love spending time with family and friends, making music, and watching my St. Louis Cardinals win. 

Katie Gholson


I'm Katie and I am thrilled to be part of the pastoral leadership team at The Connection.  I've been in ministry for 13 years at various churches and not-for-profit agencies.  I am currently a Hospital Chaplain at St. Elizabeth's in O'Fallon, IL.  I grew up in Edwardsville and I am excited to watch our faith community come together in the town that I love.  My family and I live right outside of town and we spend our free time hiking, swimming, and exploring the outdoors.  I love getting to know people and hearing their stories.  I believe that God has created each person for a unique purpose and God's love is for ALL people.  I would love to meet you, hear your story, and witness God's work in your life.