Bethany’s Pastoral Search Committee has been entrusted with the responsibility of leading the search for our new next pastor and making a recommendation to the congregation. After many meetings, and much deliberation and prayer, and by unanimous decision of the Search Committee (Linton Childs, Dean Arnold, Judy Beaupre, Dave Digel, Leroy Larsen, Kathy Rodriguez, Ryan Andrews, Melissa Nelson, Robin Schultz, Linda Zawada, and Scott Beaderstadt) and by unanimous vote of the Church Council (Lauren Polenske-Murphy, Sara Haas, Ann Ridge, and Alicia Ervin, plus Judy, Dean, Dave, Kathy, and Linda), we are delighted to introduce the Reverend Vince Amlin and the Reverend Rebecca Anderson.
On Sunday, July 24, Vince and Rebecca led us in a special worship service, which was followed immediately by a special congregational meeting where the congregation voted in favor of extending a call to serve as Co-Pastors of Bethany United Church of Christ.
Vince Amlin grew up in Indiana and Ohio and is a graduate of New York University and the University of Chicago Divinity School. Ordained in the UCC in 2010, he has served as Associate Pastor of the United Church of Gainesville, Florida for the past seven years where he is involved in preaching, pastoral care, Open and Affirming and social justice ministries, and church administration. Vince knows the North Side of Chicago well, having managed the Common Pantry at Epiphany UCC and served as an intern and part-time pastor at Holy Covenant United Methodist Church in Lake View while he was a student. Vince is a talented preacher who is part of the UCC’s“Next Generation Leadership Initiative.”He has also organized church retreats, has run skit nights and talent shows, has written devotionals for the UCC’s national website, and loves to sing. He and his wife Rachelle, a licensed clinical social worker, have a one-year old daughter, Nola.
Rebecca Anderson grew up in small towns in the Midwest and New England and is a graduate of Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts. Before her call to ministry, she worked as a farmer and gardener, a docent at a Shaker village, and with children as a nanny, in camps, and running an after-school program at a Jewish day school. She found her way back to church attending a joint UCC/Disciples of Christ church in Boston and then attended the University of Chicago Divinity School, graduating in 2010. She is ordained by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and is eligible for ministerial standing in the UCC. She has worked as Minister of Small Groups and Spiritual Formation at Holy Covenant United Methodist Church and, for 4 ½ years, as Associate Minister at Glencoe Union Church in the northern suburbs, where she preached and worked with outreach and justice teams, adult education, and to revitalize the teen ministry program. She is part of the University of Chicago’s “Chicago Commons Project” for developing ministerial leaders. She is passionate about bringing ministry to everyone, especially people who don’t think church is for them.
We believe Vince and Rebecca are a remarkable team whose enthusiastic attitude and combined experience, strengths, and talents open up exciting opportunities for Bethany’s future. Vince’s regular schedule will be about 75% of full-time, and Rebecca about 25%. Typically, we expect both of them to be present on Sundays.
Pastor Vince and family will be moving into the parsonage during the week of September 19th. Pastor Rebecca will preach on September 25th. Pastor Beth’s last Sunday will be September 18th.
All of us on the Search Committee greatly appreciate the support and patience of the congregation over the past year and a half as we have worked to define and articulate our needs and to consider a wide range of potential candidates with diverse backgrounds and gifts. We are excited about Bethany’s future and are thrilled to be in a position to call candidates with the skills, experience, accomplishments, and enthusiasm that Vince and Rebecca can bring to our congregation.