June 6, 2017
A congregational meeting takes place 12:15 pm, Sunday, June 11 (with lunch) to vote on calling Rev. Kelle Brown and Rev. Steven Davis to serve as Plymouth Church’s ministerial leadership. Please attend this meeting to affirm the great skill, energy and abilities Kelle and Steve bring to the service of our church needs. This important step of validation, provides Kelle and Steve standing in the broader United Church of Christ community.
Youth “Game Gathering” and child care are available during the vote. School age kids may pick up food from the noon luncheon in Hildebrand, then head to Room 221, where board games and supervision will be available. Kids are also welcome to bring computer games. Pre-school age child care is available in first floor pre-school rooms. Please contact Jamie Shilling, 206.948.5725.
Rev. Kelle Brown
Originally from Columbus, Georgia, Kelle brings a wealth of experience, from spiritual leadership and business acumen to inclusion education and community building. While attending Spelman College, she was asked to lead music for a church start, Amistad UCC in Atlanta, Georgia. At the age of 19, her life of ministry began. In addition to being a Minister of Music, a youth minister and a church administrator, Kelle consistently pursued her call to ministry.
Graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Spelman College in Atlanta, and after working in different capacities as a mental health provider, Kelle traveled to Seattle in 2003 to earn her Master of Divinity from Seattle University School of Theology and Ministry. She also received a post-Master’s degree and is completing her Doctorate of Ministry from San Francisco Theological Seminary. Her dissertation is entitled: Moving from the Gate to the Porch: Solidarity as a Hallmark of Discipleship.
Kelle provided pastoral leadership at Madrona-Grace Presbyterian Church during a time of great change and transition, and as an intern, was the Director of Child and Youth Ministries at Bethany UCC. She also interned at Mercer Island Presbyterian Church, gathering experience and skill. After ordination in 2011, Kelle moved to Richmond, Virginia to provide pastoral leadership to the women and children of Daughters of Zelophehad, a Presbyterian supported ministry for families experiencing homelessness, as well as pastoring the Woodville
She returned to Seattle as Pastor for Mary’s Place, where she facilitated weekly empowerment and spirituality groups, led powerful and dynamic worship and worked as community liaison to other faith organizations. Kelle also facilitates conversation on dismantling oppression, and offers ways to consider and reflect on privilege, bias, prejudice and bigotry, and provides spiritual and leadership coaching to individuals.
Kelle arrived at Plymouth in August of 2015, and found a church full of many faithful and welcoming people. She has since discovered that this church is poised to be a progressive voice of inclusion to all people, a place that will welcome church “refugees” looking for healing, and a chalice where all sacred music is seen for its beauty.
She brings a wellspring of vision and innovative ideas. As to vision, Kelle shares the following, “I intend to lead Plymouth with humility and grace, and promote ways to have the courageous conversations needed to journey together as God’s people. I see Plymouth, in the spirit of the Sankofa, looking back to honor the traditions and heritage of a church that is a pillar of Seattle, while flying forward with the gifts of those we honor, knowing that we the living are charged to imagine how we will be agents of change and compassion in the future.
“Let us consider how to use the resources to welcome the other, and to listen for the voices that have been
muted. Let us consider new ways of gathering resources that will be more sustainable into the future. How we do church is changing globally, but God has more for us to do, to include engaging in hands-on ministry to the least and the last and the most vulnerable. There is no scarcity here! God is a God of abundance.”
Kelle enjoys writing, drawing, composing music and reading. In addition to her children’s book, Sun and Moon, she is working on a novel, Casseroles. She is most proud of her daughter Indigo, who is a student at the
University of Washington, the love of her life.
Rev. Steven Davis
Steven Davis knew from age seven he wanted to become a minister. Born in Shreveport, LA, he grew up in El Paso, Texas. At age 13, Steve embraced the gift of faith in Christ and the next year embraced the call to ordained pastoral ministry.
Starting as a student/pastor at the age of 19, while going to undergraduate school at McMurry College in Abilene, Texas, Rev. Davis served in ministry for 28 years. He earned his bachelor’s degree with a double major in Religion and Psychology and his Master of Divinity from Emory University, Candler School of Theology, in Atlanta, Georgia.
Rev. Davis served in the United Methodist Church, in parish ministry of congregations from 20 to over 800 in attendance, rural and urban settings, and up to four worship services each weekend. He served as Associate Minister and Senior Minister of larger staffed congregations, where he provided leadership and vision with support and program staff and volunteers. His work as Evangelism Coordinator in UMC New Mexico and North Texas Conferences was fueled by his passion to see congregations become healthy, vibrant places of ministry and outreach to serve the community and communicate faith with integrity, justice, grace and hope.
Rev. Davis was forced to relinquish his ministerial credentials in the United Methodist Church when he came out as a gay man. He continued to respond to God’s call on his life as he pursued ministry in the UCC where his whole life and experience could be lived in authenticity, acceptance and grace. While seeking ministerial authorization in the United Church of Christ through the South Central Conference, Steve participated in ministry at Cathedral of Hope UCC in Dallas, TX, the world’s largest predominantly LGBTQ congregation. Steve also worked fulltime as Project Coordinator for Process Improvement for a leading global company which produced radiation detection devices. Additionally, Steve was asked to serve as Supply Minister for The Gathering of San Angelo UCC, a central Texas new congregation start for 1 ½ years before accepting the position of ministry at Plymouth.
Steve says, “I am beyond overjoyed to answer the call to a new place in ministry, and to be called as the Executive Minister at Plymouth Church, continuing to serve as a co-leader in ministry with Rev. Kelle Brown! Knowing the visionary pastoral leadership and empowering lay leadership of this progressive and life-changing congregation, I am thrilled to be part of carrying this vibrant ministry forward, strengthening our organizational functional effectiveness and our facility operations to support our mission, and increasing our outreach to the community and world with our bold and progressive message of justice, inclusion and hope: I believe God has brought us together for an
exciting new chapter and season of ministry together!”
“I view my leadership at Plymouth, in partnership with Rev. Kelle Brown, as an opportunity keep Plymouth as a vibrant, inclusive and progressive place of leading change, justice and faith. With my pastoral gifts, I hope to help create and support experiences in worship and day-to-day life, where the message of hope and substantive change for the good of all is not just an aspiration, but a daily reality. In collaboration with Rev. Brown’s skillful leadership in visioning, worship and pastoral care, I see myself assisting in organizing our ministry efforts to bring all the pieces together, develop a strong and reliable financial grounding and move us ever outward in our appeal and ministry to others. I see Plymouth becoming a teaching congregation, a place of social justice advocacy and support and a church reaching out with a media presence and inspirational worship broadcasting across the Pacific Northwest and around the world. I’m honored to work alongside Kelle and this amazing staff and congregation!”
Plymouth Church is open to the public Thursday, February 14, beginning at 9 am.
Plymouth Church UCC follows the Seattle Public Schools schedule for weather closures/delays. In case of emergency, please contact Executive Minister firstname.lastname@example.org. Email messages will be checked regularly.