Rebecca Anderson (co-pastor) is ordained in The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). She has a Masters in Divinity from the University of Chicago and a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Playwrighting from Hampshire College (Amherst, MA). A believer in the power of the spoken word, Rebecca’s been on Snap Judgment (radio) and The Broad Experience (podcast) and worked with story-telling companies like 2nd Story, The Moth, and Do Not Submit (all in Chicago, IL). Rebecca has developed and teaches workshops designed to grow the practice of story-telling and foster interpersonal connection. As a comic, she was featured in The Boston Globe and The Christian Century. With a background in farming and gardening, growing healthy food has been joy, job, and spiritual grounding for Rebecca. In 2015, she planted her first garden in Rogers Park, where she’s putting down all kinds of roots.
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Vince Amlin (co-pastor) is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. Vince has a Masters of Divinity from the University of Chicago and a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Dramatic Writing from New York University. His writing has been published in Split Ticket: Independent Faith in a Time of Partisan Politics and From the Psalms to the Cloud: Connecting in a Digital Age. He is also a monthly contributor to the United Church of Christ "Still Speaking Daily Devotional." Vince has always dreamed of starting a church, out of a deep interest in Christian community. He used his Ministry Fellowship from the Fund for Theological Education to study Christian intentional communities around the world. When not working, Vince can be found scouring the prairie or studying the tops of trees for birds. He's currently working on a book titled The Great Speckled Bird: Faith Lessons Learned Through Binoculars.
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Alexa Eisenbarth (student pastor) is in her third and final year as a Master of Divinity student at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. A Washington state transplant, she graduated from Whitworth University with a Bachelor of Arts in Theology and Sociology in 2016. Having sensed a call to ministry in high school youth group, that call and her faith have changed a million times since then. She is a certified candidate for ordained ministry in The Pacific Northwest Conference of The United Methodist Church, and hopes to participate in the reconstruction of the Christian faith tradition that it might not do harm. Alexa has previously worked for The General Commission on the Status and Role of Women in The United Methodist Church, and at Audubon Park, Kennewick First, and Bothell United Methodist Churches as a pastoral intern.
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Adam Motz (music director) is a musician, attorney, teacher, and advocate. He has a Bachelor of Music in Education from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a Juris Doctor and Certificate in Advocacy from Loyola University Chicago School of Law. He was inspired to become an attorney by the marriage equality movement, and has since worked with the Legal Council for Health Justice and the National Immigrant Justice Center’s LGBT Immigrant Rights Initiative. By day, he spends most of his time writing legal stuff, but outside of that, he loves to play the piano, solve crosswords, and explore the city with his better half. He is classically trained, but really values flexibility in musicianship (go with the flow!), and he writes some of his own songs, too. He loves pop music, all the divas, country, Christian, and classical, but his number-one-favorite-of-all-time will forever be Céline Dion.
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Bri Crumbley is the queen of all things administrative (and is in the process of accepting that that can actually be a spiritual gift). With a passion for planning, a musical theatre background, and a self proclaimed Type-A- personality Bri is here to stage manage the production that is Gilead. Both her make-it-happen attitude and desire to create spaces where people connect and grow together were evident in her nearly 5 years with Cross Culture Student Ministries (now Grace Students - Chapel Hill, NC) as an administrator, events coordinator, and small group leader. A sociologist at heart, high-energy introvert Bri is always up for a chat, be it problem-solving, idea-generating, or pure relationship-building. When she's not roaming around Roger's Park, Bri likes to hang out in her home state, North Carolina, preferably with a Cheerwine and her chosen family.
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OTHER MEMBERS OF THE TEAM
Since we began working on Gilead, many talented folks have stepped forward to offer their help. We are honored to work with them. You should follow the links below and pay them money to do things for you!
Adam Frieberg, photography and technology. Find him at http://www.adamfrieberg.com/
Edyta Legiec, web design. Find her at http://www.littleworldphoto.com/
Lucas Ryan, photography. Find him at https://www.facebook.com/LRYANPhoto/
Mathew Schramm, logo design and branding. Find him at http://www.matschramm.com/
Rachel Singer, art ("Give" page). Find her at http://www.theblindcartographer.com/
Hall of fame
We've had, and are gonna have, amazing people passing through this congregation, as student pastors, as musicians, as interns. Until we're like, a hundred years old, and there are too many to fit in this space, we wanna hold a place for them and the ways they've shaped us as a church!
Vince Wilson helped launch Gilead as our first music director. Vince is a professional singer and songwriter from Philadelphia, PA (and now back home there). He was classically trained at Swarthmore College for twelve years through the Chester Children's Chorus and has provided vocal support for artists such as Tasha Cobbs, Mark Collier, Shawn Bigby, Ernest Pugh, Dorinda Clark-Cole and more. Currently he specializes in music production, singing, songwriting and performance theough his solo vocal work and collaborative projects. Vince has spent a considerable amount of time leading worship and being a band leader across many genres. You can hear him here.
In addition to all his considerable musical chops, Vince came to Gilead knowing how to start something new: he's the founder of The Soul Section, a band and an event, in State College, PA (home of Penn State), where artists, singers, rappers, poets and musicians gathered.
Chelsea Cornelius was our first ever student pastor, during her second year at the University of Chicago Divinity School, in the Masters of Divinity program. She's a candidate for ordination in the Presbyterian Church (USA). Her academic interests include feminist theology, queer theory, bioethics, and identity and discursive space. She also works in the University of Chicago Writing Program, serves on the Office of the Provost's Sexual Misconduct Advisory Board, and co-organizes DivOUT (the Divinity School LGBTQ+ organization). Her previous ministry work includes serving as a chaplain at Cook County Jail, a Ministry Associate in campus ministry, and as a summer camp Program Director in northern Wisconsin.