Welcome our New Pastors!!!
I am from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. I’m the youngest and only daughter of three. My grandfather was an ordained Presbyterian pastor and my mother went to seminary when I was in high school to become a professional Christian Educator. She liked school so much that she got her Masters in Divinity. My father is a retired professor of law and he taught me to look at every side of a situation, opinion or problem.
I was ordained in May 1999 after spending a year as a Young Adult Volunteer in Mission. While in Mexico, I taught English, learned Spanish and led PCUSA Mission work teams. It was there I learned to trust the nudging of the Holy Spirit. After that year, I moved back to Pittsburgh, became ordained at my home church as an Interim Associate Pastor and as Consultant for the Metro Urban Institute of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. Next I served for three years as an Associate Pastor in Charlotte, North Carolina, and then it was on to the Presbyterian Church at Hammonton to as their pastor.
After ten amazing years, I went back to school at the Council for Relationships to learn to be a Marriage and Family Therapist. The hardest part of the past three years has been not having a regular church family. Since completing my post-graduate certificate, I began building a practice as a Marriage and Family Therapist at the Council for Relationships in Voorhees. I have enjoyed going to different churches but I kept feeling drawn back to you. That’s how the nudging of the Holy Sprit works!
I am from Santa Barbara California, where I grew up without church. I began attending a Presbyterian youth group in high school in the middle of a family crisis, and the love and care I found there convinced me to stick around. I worked for eight years for the YMCA, running youth and family programs. After my sons were born I started working for my home church as the youth director. After five years of wonderful ministry there, I felt a call to seminary and further religious study. We moved to Princeton in 2006 where I started my M.Div. program.
I was ordained in 2009 to be pastor at New Covenant Presbyterian Church in Mt. Laurel, NJ. I served there three years. In 2012 I began working with three churches in and around Trenton to form a collaborative youth group. I also serve as Chaplain at Rider University. My work with a diverse group of youth and young adults over the last several years has been exciting and rewarding (and challenging!).
In September I began working with the Taiwanese American Fellowship Presbyterian Church in New Brunswick, NJ. I serve as their children and youth Christian educator on Sunday afternoons. It is a trilingual church (Taiwanese, Mandarin, and English), and I am enjoying the challenge of intercultural work. I also serve as Communications Director for the United Mercer Interfaith Organization (UMIO). Our work is focused on social justice, primarily in Trenton with marginalized communities.
I’m looking forward to collaborating with you all and Jen to create community, walk with God, love our neighbors, learn and grow!
Gretchen Kolecki, Director of Christian Education
Gretchen works with our children and youth programs organizing Sunday school and overseeing our junior and senior high youth programs. Gretchen is married to Dennis and have three sons Tyler, Andrew and Jack.
Church Secretary- Janis Danielewicz
R. William Powell, Organist/Music director
Will comes to us with an extensive background in church and theater music. A graduate of Rowan University, Will is accomplished in piano, guitar, organ and choral directing. Will lives in Collingswood with his wife, Kirstin and their daughter Loralei
Barbara Bockman, Treasurer
Doreen Caniglia, Director of Kaleidoscope Kids Preschool
Mary Anne Kelly, Bookkeeper
Custodians-Paul Ciarrochi and Susan Wilson