Please help us welcome new clergy to the Alexandria and Arlington Districts. As of July 24 churches received new pastors or associates. Some are homegrown, some have come from other states, and several are starting their very first appointments. Learn more about them below. New Alexandria District Clergy

New Alexandria Clergy

Benson McGlone, Gainesville UMC – Bristow

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Virginia Beach UMC

Family: Alicia – Wife, Bean – Dog

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Reaching new people

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Preaching and growing the church

What was your very first job? Changing the world by bagging groceries.

Fun fact about you: I love a seriously good cup of coffee…but I’ll still drink crappy church coffee too.


Charles Matthew Stribula (“Charlie”), Old Bridge UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: None

Family: Carol (wife, since 1987), Harrison (son, born 1989), and Max (son, born 1996).

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Leading the Wednesday evening Communion & Prayer worship service!

What are you most passionate about in ministry? The sacraments, especially Holy Communion!

What was your very first job? Night watchman at Flushing Airport (NYC), where I had previously learned to fly.

Fun fact about you: I’ve been a Boy Scout adult leader 17 years, even though I was never a scout as a youth.


Chenda Lee, Annandale UMC


Jim Johnson, St. Andrew’s UMC


John Obeng, Ghana Wesley(Alexandra/New Life Campus) Second site of Ghana Wesley

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Ghana Wesley

Family: John is married to Dr. Angela Obeng a Clinical Psychologist and the couple have four children; Nana Yaa, Awura Ama, Michael and Akua Obeng.

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Planting a new church in the Ghanaian and African Community through the enabling power of God. Having the opportunity to serve, love, mobilize and make disciples of Jesus Christ in the Ghanaian and African community for the transformation of the world.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Prayer, personal study of the Bible, evangelism and social justice.

What was your very first job? Served as Sales Executive at Unilever in Ghana-West Africa

Fun fact about you: I was a goalkeeper in my Elementary School soccer team.


Katie Webster, Burke UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Wesley Seminary

Family: 3 Daughters (Olive, Edie, & Kit), 1 Yorkie “Solomon”

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church?Working with the senior pastor and church leadership to deepen and build on the work God is doing at Burke.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Being a carrier of hope in people’s lives – in the world.

What was your very first job? Waitress

Fun fact about you: I used to perform professional improv comedy with ImprovBoston and then Washington Improv Theater. (I was even the Artistic Director.) I still jump into shows in DC from time to time.


Lauren Geraghty, Messiah UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Messiah UMC

Family: Spouse (John), Three kids (Jack 7, Elin 5, Rory 1), and a dog (Goose)!

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? I’ve attended Messiah for many years. This year, I hope to help more people find their place in the church, plug in, and connect.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Helping people connect and learn to be in community both with God and each other.

What was your very first job? Babysitter =). After college, I was in mortgage sales.

Fun fact about you: We live in Springfield and most of our family (my husband’s four siblings and mother and my family parents, brother, sister-in-law) all live anywhere from 50 steps to 3 miles of us. My sister lives in Richmond so she is furthest out of the bubble!


Melissa Porter-Miller: Franconia UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Redland UMC

Family: Husband–Robert, Son–Shea (11 years old), Daughter–Siobhan (5 years old), Cat –Cassie

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Living into the church’s vision; continuing to develop the church’s strategic plan, continuing to build on family ministries

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Mission, creating dynamic worship experiences, mission work, reaching out to the church and community with Christ’s love.

What was your very first job? Working at Forbes Candies

Fun fact about you: I served as a missionary in Ireland. I love the color purple.


Mario Velez-Lopez, Spirit & Life UMC


Michael Finegan, Spirit & Life UMC


Monica Reynolds, Warrenton UMC


Peter Berbenera, Spirit & Life UMC


Peter Kwon, Annandale UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Immanuel Korean UMC

Family: None

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? First time appointment. Excited about everything

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Congregational ministry. Mostly preaching.

What was your very first job? Kumon instructor

Fun fact about you: I love soccer and I was born in South Korea.


Taylor Mertins, Cokesbury

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: St. John’s UMC – Staunton

Family: Wife- Lindsey; Son- Elijah; Dog- Tennessee

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Getting to learn the story of Cokesbury Church.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Worship and Preaching

What was your very first job? Lifeguard

Fun fact about you: Eagle Scout


Tony Arnold, Christ Church (Online Campus)

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Wesley Seminary – MDiv Student

Family: Theresa is my wife. No children. We were both agnostic when 2011 began and came to know Jesus Christ personally by the end of that year. So we can’t tell our faith stories without telling the other’s story.

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Launching our online campus and sharing life with people all over the US and around the world.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Helping people to grow in their faith (live into God’s purpose for their lives) and become equipped to disciple others.

What was your very first job? Music and Arts

Fun fact about you: My wife and I love to travel. We’ve been to Italy and the Caribbean. One day we would like to get involved in an overseas mission.


Young Min Kim, Nokesville UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Korean UMC of Greater Washington

Family: Bo Young Cho (spouse), Caleb Kim (son), and two dogs (Daehan & Minguk)

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? It is my first time serving a church as a pastor. Everything is new and exciting.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? preaching, education, and organizing

What was your very first job? Job Service and Youth Service Coordinator at Korean Community Service Center

Fun fact about you: I love to go backpacking to South America by myself.

 

New Arlington District Clergy

 

Bob Riggles, The Vine

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Cardinal UMC and CCO Campus Ministry at Ball State University

Family: Jill (wife), Lilli Jo and Turner (Twins, 5), Elli (snowflake baby 2)

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church?  Experiencing the dynamic ministry of the Vine’s multi-site strategy and missional DNA for engaging and connecting others to a vibrant and flourishing faith community.

What are you most passionate about in ministry?  Being the church beyond the walls of our church facilities and reclaiming a Pauline/Wesleyan model of apostolic ministry.

What was your very first job? Snow Removal

Fun fact about you: Lived in or visited more than a dozen countries


Catharine Guest, Andrew Chapel UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Franconia UMC (Alexandria)

Family: 4 grown children – 2 men and 2 women; three grandchildren – a boy and two girls; a mother who will be 98 in September, two Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and two parakeets!

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? the human-human and human-divine relationships that will develop and deepen as we serve God together

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Helping folks understand they are precious and beloved of God – so much so that they are worth dying for – once they start accepting that truth, our ministry together takes off.

What was your very first job? Working at Arlington Hall Station where they were first developing night vision goggles

Fun fact about you: Rode a camel in the Moroccan desert


DeLishia A. Davis: Calloway UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Christ Church, Fairfax Station

Family: Husband – Billy Ray and two daughters – Maya Alexis (17) and Mycah Alexandrea (3)

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Church growth

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Christian formation

What was your very first job? Church office helper

Fun fact about you: I love tennis and baseball


Elisabeth Williams (Beth), United Christian Parish

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: I served Presbyterian churches in the past, as I am a Presbyterian pastor. I am now currently serving a united congregation of four denominations.

Family: I am married to my high school sweetheart and have two adult daughters and three grandchildren.

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? I am looking forward to help UCP move into the future with a unified vision of what their ministry can accomplish in their community and in their church.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? I love teaching the bible and especially enjoy working with confirmation as the young people explore their faith.

What was your very first job? My first paying job besides babysitting was packaging small items like googly eyes for a hobby shop.

Fun fact about you: I flew to Australia to see Haley’s Comet and then it was cloudy all week.


Eugene Kim: Pleasant Valley UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Korean UMC of Greater Washington

Family: Jinok Lim (wife), Bin Kim (son, 15), San Kim (son, 12)

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Getting to know church members, Outreach ministries

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Mission and preaching

What was your very first job? Missionary

Fun fact about you: I lost 80lb last three years.


Hee Won Cho, Korean UMC of Greater Washington

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you cam: Boykins Charge

Family: Sunhyo Kim(spouse), Haon(son), Yeon(son), Sean(son).

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Meeting new God’s people, worshiping with them, building an intimate relationship in Christ with them.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Young adults and worship

What was your very first job? part-time clerk at a construction company 17 years ago.

Fun fact about you: I’ve visited more than 20 countries.


In Yong (Danny) Chung, Korean UMC of Koinonia


James Harrington: Friendship UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Leader at Friendship UMC & Ministerial Assistant at Annandale UMC

Family: My wife Kathy is a Reading Specialist in Alexandria City Public Schools. We have a daughter Amelia (almost 2) and are expecting a baby in mid-August (very soon). We have a dog named Allie. We live in Falls Church.

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? The opportunity to help Friendship Church reach its community and become a more vital congregation. (I know we can do it.)

What are you most passionate about in ministry? I love helping to plan creative worship experiences and planning/leading special small group studies for youth/adults.

What was your very first job? Paperboy for the Washington Post

Fun fact about you: While on a cruise re-tracing the steps of Paul’s final missionary journey, we were caught in a terrible storm (making nearly everyone on board sick), which was eerily reminiscent with Paul’s shipwreck at Malta.


Jiyeon Kim, Korean UMC of Greater Washington

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Warrenton UMC

Family: single, no pets

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? building up team with new pastors and staff

What are you most passionate about in ministry? sharing the Word of God in a variety of setting, including worship, bible study, meeting, pastoral care, etc.

What was your very first job? math teacher

 


Kate Floyd, Arlington Commons (an Arlington new faith community)

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Grace UMC, Atlanta, GA

Family: Married to Kyle Tau, who works for The Council of Bishops in the Methodist Building on Captiol Hill which is what brought us to the area. I have a 3 1/2 year old daughter, Daisy, and a 9 month old son, Samuel and our dog is Angel.

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Reaching people who are skeptical of the institutional church in new and creative ways so they are drawn into community with Christ, each other, and the world.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Creative worship planning and leading with a team

What was your very first job? File clerk at Legal Aid Clinic in Lubbock, TX

Fun fact about you: I’ve seen the Indigo Girls in concert more than 20 times.


Teer Hardy: Mount Olivet UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Great Bridge UMC, Director of Youth Ministries

Family: Allison (wife), Camden (son), Rosie P. (beagle)

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Opportunity to work with young adults and young families.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Seeing the ways God works in the lives of those we meet in the community.

What was your very first job? Camp counselor at Goshen Scout Camp

Fun fact about you: My sock game is on point.


Young Ryu: Arlington Korean UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Wesley United Methodist Church in Vienna

Family: Su Jung (wife), Seo-Yeon (rising 9th grader), Min-Oh(rising 7th grader), Min-Joon (rising 5th grader)

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Becoming lead pastor again, Parsonage very next to the church.

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Revival

What was your very first job? Youth Director (Youth Pastor)

Fun fact about you: I like soccer. I like to watch 5 minutes documentary called e-knowledge channel (in Korean).


Yun Chol Kim: Korean UMC of Greater Washington

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Brucetown UMC (Winchester District)

Family: Jenny Kim, Emily Kim (10) Abigail Kim (7)

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Extremely different context

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Spiritual Growth

What was your very first job? Employee at the fast food restaurant

Fun fact about you: I had been trained as a auto mechanic at the Korean Army. I could do both Holy Communion and Engine oil change at the same time if people don’t mind.


Yunho Eo, Christ Crossman UMC

Church (or other job/position/school) from which you came: Colonial Beach

Family: Wife, Jongwon Eo

What are you most excited about for the coming year at your new church? Making disciples

What are you most passionate about in ministry? Discipleship Training and Small Group Initiative

What was your very first job? Samsung in Korea

Fun fact about you: I try to swim under the water as long as I can endure.