Meet Bill Garrett, who speaks to us as a congregation from the pulpit as one of our “clergy—in-residence” but is also paid by the church on a part time basis to provide pastoral care and oversee many of the church’s administrative duties. Bill came to us from all the way from northern California! He enjoys being one of many voices in the pulpit presenting a variety of insights with a variety of speaking styles.
Bill comes to us with his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Texas Tech University, as well as his Master’s Degree in Divinity from Texas Christian University (hence the accent!). Bill embraces the idea of Progressive Christianity. To him, it affirms the same thought from one of our denomination’s founders about being Christian, but not the only Christians. He believes that Progressive Christianity honors and respects the ability for each person to claim and own his/her own faith.
Bill loves to travel, cheer on the San Francisco Giants (you can take the boy out of the West Coast but can’t take the West Coast out of the boy), and search for really fine Mexican food! Bill also enjoys spending quality time with Nancy (his wife and partner for 47 years), his 2 daughters, his 2 son-in-laws, and his grand-daughter.
Rev. Bill Bloom serves our community as Director of Music. He is a graduate of Temple University's Esther Boyer College of Music and the School of Sacred Ministries. Rev. Bill is an ordained Interfaith Minister, teacher, composer, arranger, pianist and vocalist. Rev. Bill joined our clergy as our minister of music over 20 years ago. Bill's credits his continued dedication to our church because of its theology and inclusiveness and diversity. He is proud to be part of a church that does not just "talk the talk", but "walks the walk".
Bill is proud father of 3 daughters and 2 grandchildren. When Bill is not singing and playing piano with us, he sings with Philadelphia Boys Choir and Chorale (and has been doing this since 2004). Bill is the co-writer and co-producer of the Seminal Hit Recording, "Double Dutch Bus".
Rev. Nancy Schongalla-Bowman was ordained in the United Church of Christ in 1979 after receiving degrees from Stanford University and a Master of Divinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary. She served as Associate Pastor at a UCC church for 4 years, followed by hospital, hospice, and nursing home chaplaincy roles. After completing marriage and family therapy training at Council for Relationships in Philadelphia, Nancy joined the staff. She returned to Princeton Theological Seminary in 1995 where she find fullfillment (and lots to do!) as Director of Student Counseling.
Married to Gary Schongalla-Bowman in 1985, Nancy and Gary have 3 sons, 4 granddaughters and a dog. She is the somewhat-official coordinator of the "Clergy in Residence" at United Christian Church. She and Gary facilitate an evening small group in their home in Yardley.
Michele Schenk studied for ministry with the United Church of Christ's Licensed Ministry Program and is currently working towards Ordination.
After serving another UCC congregation for five years as their part time pastor, she found herself looking for a church to join, and after visiting several others, landed at United Christian again (She was previously a member from 2005-2010). She believes that here at United Christian Church, "We don’t just talk the talk; we walk the walk here. We embody the slogan of radical hospitality; we embrace all persons - including our LGBTQ friends; mission is a priority and diversity of our congregants is apparent."
In addition to preaching, Michele enjoys leading women’s retreats and being part of a women’s spirituality group. Other passions are learning more about and seeking racial justice for our community, and those who still live in oppression; and helping to make our environment sustainable.
When she is not working at her full-time job at The Hun School or doing ministry with United Christian Church, you may find Michele walking through the woods or sitting reflectively alongside the Delaware River refilling her proverbial cup. You may also find Michele filling her creative cup by getting dirt under her nails as she is an avid gardener and sewer. She lives in historic Washington Crossing with her her life partner-
travel partner-best friend Joe. She loves talking about her two adult children and her beloved granddaughter, so feel free to ask her about them any time.
Rev. Lance Roberds is an ordained minister of The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). He is the Executive Director of the Counseling Center, a nonprofit agency offering psychotherapeutic services to the Greater Bucks County area, and the Senior Partner in Northampton Psychotherapy Associates, both located in Holland, PA
Meet Rev. Dr. Beverly Dale, otherwise known as “Dale”! www.beverlydale.org Dale came to join us as a clergy member because she was, in her own words, “looking for a congregation that would appreciate my passion for healing the sexual ignorance and trauma created by the erotophobic Christian Church….and who would give me the space to create a sex-positive Christian environment – and not think I was weird!” She continues to guide us through her teachings regarding “reading the Bible with sex-positive eyes, Christianity without shame or guilt”. She believes that, too often, church tradition is an excuse to avoid the difficult questions and challenges of applying the gospel to today’s concerns.
Dale comes to us with all that she learned while earning her Bachelors and Masters degrees in sociology from Illinois State University, as well as her Masters of Divinity and Doctorate of Ministry from Chicago Theological seminary. She is presently the founder and chair of the Incarnation Institute for Sex & Faith, a non-profit that teaches an inclusive, science-friendly, and sex-positive Christianity. www.incarnationinstitue.org Dale has published a variety of columns and articles on justice causes and recently her first book that is for professionals who have to clean up the messes created by sex-negative Christianity!
Dale enjoys cooking, creative writing, and creating mosaics. One of Dale’s hidden talents is that she is quite an accomplished shepherd. Growing up as the daughter of a tenant farmer in the Midwest, she raised sheep for her 4-H project and showed them at the annual county fair! If you have any sheep (or “sheepish”) questions (Haha!), Dale is a great resource!