Pastor Jennifer McDonald
My name is Jennifer McDonald and I am delighted to be the new pastor of Vincent United Methodist Church. I began my pastoral appointment here on July 1, 2018. I am eager to get to know all of you and the town of Minot, and likewise, eager for you to know me. So, please read on to learn a little bit about me.
I was born in Corvallis, Oregon and over the years have lived in nine different states! For most of the past 25 years I made my home in the parts of Wyoming and Montana that butt up against Yellowstone National Park; and I began my journey towards ordained ministry in Cody, Wyoming. Most recently, however I came from Wilmore, Kentucky where I lived for three years while studying for my M.Div. at Asbury Theological Seminary. I will be completing my M.Div. online this year. I have B.A. in biology from Earlham College, and a M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Prescott College.
I love the Bible and picking one favorite verse is a bit of a challenge. I am especially fond of the Old Testament wisdom literature, but these verses from Philippians have been what you might call my “life verses” since I left my counseling business five years ago and turned towards my calling into pastoral ministry. “…I regard everything as loss because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.” (Phil. 3:8) and, “…forgetting what lies behind, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus.”(Phil. 3:14). The Christian Life is a journey, and I have discovered that I only grow into my calling and into a deeper relationship with Christ, when I am ready to leave behind what is past and lean into the future that God intends.
Though I have not lived in North Dakota before, my move to Minot feels a lot like coming home. My Dad grew up in North Dakota, and his parents grew up on farms in Perth, and lived much of their adult lives various places around the state. A love of the prairie seems to be woven into the very fibers of my being, and I am thrilled to be living here.
I enjoy so many different hobbies that it makes no sense to list them all here. I love many kinds of outdoor activities and also enjoy a variety of artistic pursuits. I have a bird-dog, a flat-coated retriever who has never before lived in such good bird hunting country. Now that I live in North Dakota, I intend to focus on my dog and bird-hunting hobby as much as I can.
But given all of that, the greatest joy of all in my life is walking the Christian journey of growth in grace with other disciples. There is nothing so exciting as following Jesus with others who are also growing and living into their call to participate with God as he creates loving community and transforms the world. I am so happy to be the pastor of Vincent UMC, and I am filled with anticipation—eager to see what God has for us next.
Office Manager Keri Hoover
Hi, My name is Keri Hoover. I am from Halliday, ND. I moved to Minot in 1993 to attend MSU and have lived in the area since then. I currently reside in Burlington. I am the Office/Finance Manager of Vincent United Methodist Church. I look forward to assisting you and learning about your church and the members. Please let me know if I can be of any assistance to you.
As organist, I enjoy showcasing our pipe organ. There is a lot of variety to the literature, and a wide range of sounds that can be achieved. It’s fun to hear the congregation respond as they sing hymns. I consider it a team venture. I truly believe that the quality of music can make a huge difference in worship. The appreciation I feel from the Vincent family is a precious gift.
My name is Matt Balas and I am the Director of the United Methodist Youth Fellowship (UMYF). I have had the opportunity to lead this wonderful group of youth for many years. During our time together we participate in many fun activities including picnics, Laser Tag, ice skating, movies, lock-ins, mission trips, just to name a few. The UMYF also supports happenings within the church including leading the annual Easter Sunrose Service, Christmas Program, and Trunk or Treat night, serving as ushers and greeters during worship services, and working at the Welcome Table food pantry. I invite all youth in grades 7-12 to come out and be a part of the Vincent UMYF.