Laura Baber - firstname.lastname@example.org
Laura is an ordained deacon in the Susquehanna Conference-UMC. She is the Director and Founder of Equipping Lydia, where she guides individuals and groups through the process of spiritual formation. She journeys with others as they explore their understanding of God’s love, healing and restoration.
She received her M.Div. from Asbury Theological Seminary, Wilmore, Kentucky; a B.A in English Literature from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College, and completed the Ministry of Spiritual Direction Program through the Center for Spiritual Formation.
She is a member of the Susquehanna Conference and an Affiliate Member of the Kentucky Conference-UMC.
Alison Grove - email@example.com
Alison is an ordained elder in the Susquehanna Conference-UMC, currently serving the Friends in Faith Parish in the Scranton-Wilkes Barre District. Previously, she served churches in Hallam, Curwensville, Millersburg and Sugar Creek, all in the Susquehanna Conference.
Alison is passionate about helping people grow in their spiritual journey of faith and the connection between church and community. Her philosophy for ministry follows the model found in Acts 6: being devout in prayer, engaging in service for the proclamation of the Word, equipping the congregation for ministry, and developing leadership through guidance and service.
Alison received her M.Div. from Asbury Theological Seminary, Wilmore KY in 2000, her Instructional I Teaching Certificate in Elementary Education from Lycoming College, and a B.A in Speech Communications and Broadcasting from Mansfield University in 1984.
Jay is a graduate of Lycoming College, Drew Theological Seminary, and received a DMin from United Theological Seminary in Dayton, OH.
He has pastored churches in what are now Williamsport, Altoona, York, and Harrisburg Districts and served the Central Pennsylvania Conference as Assistant Council Director and Council Director. Jay
is a Spiritual Director and teacher of Spiritual Directors. He and his wife, Marjorie, have retired to Mechanicsburg, PA.
Center Director: Kathy Harvey Nelson - firstname.lastname@example.org
She has been a Spiritual Director for numerous people since being certified by the Center for Spiritual Formation in 2006. As a director, Kathy is committed to walking the journey of deepening spiritual relationships and exploring creative ways of practicing the presence of God.
Kathy is married and mother of two grown children. In her spare time she enjoys reading, travel, and hand-crafts. She is also the author of a children's book, "Eva: The Perfect Little Puppy," a reflection of the love brought into her life by her current fur-baby.
Richard Kohr - email@example.com
Richard received a B.A. (Psychology) from Lycoming College (1963); his M.S. (Educational Research) from Bucknell University (1965), and his Ph.D. (Educational Psychology) from The Pennsylvania State University(1970).
Richard worked for the PA Department of Education, Division of Evaluation & Reports (1971-2002, retired). He also practiced with Knestrick & Sleber and Sleber Associates from 1999 until his retirement in 2005. He is a Consultant for Statewide Assessment for Data Recognition Corporation.
Barbara Lemmel - firstname.lastname@example.org
Barbara is an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church. She the coordinator of the New England Conference Parish Consultants, and works with corporate clients through the Coaching Center of Vermont.
Barbara studied conflict mediation and family systems theory with the Lombard Mennonite Peace Center in Chicago and with the Center for Pastoral Effectiveness in New Orleans. In 2003, she developed Tending the Fire, reaching more than 300 pastors, five judicatories and several churches. She has served congregations in Vermont and upstate New York. As Troy Conference Minister, she facilitated conference re-structuring and offered programming and spiritual guidance to churches and pastors.
Barbara lives in Vermont with her husband and two children. She is committed to learning that is transformational and fun.
Kimberly Preske - email@example.com
Kimberly received her Master of Social Work (MSW) from Temple University(2014) and a B.S. in Environmental Forest Biology from the State University of New York (1992). She is a Licensed Social Worker (LSW).
She blends her personal experience as an adult school shooting survivor with her professional training as a social worker and spiritual director. In 2008 she completed the Center for Spiritual Formation’s Ministry for Spiritual Direction. Increasing awareness and providing pre education about school disaster planning, trauma, self-care and mental health are her primary focus.
Kimberly has practiced as an outpatient and school based outpatient therapist. She is the Executive Director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Pennsylvania York County.
Lois Shellrude - firstname.lastname@example.org
Lois Shellrude serves as pastor of Community Life at Bedford Community Church, Bedford Hills, NY where she oversees all Adult Ministries including Bible and Spiritual Formation electives, recovery programs, small groups, retreats and seminars, and outreach projects.
Lois’ studies include Music Education, Music Therapy, Crisis and Abuse Counseling, Biblical Studies, Spiritual Direction, and the MBTI. She has taught K-12 vocal and instrumental music in the public schools, and has served throughout her adult life in pastoral or music ministry on the staff of churches in Colorado, Scotland, the Philippines, and NY.
Lois’ eclectic nature includes love of family, music, travel, animals, nature, reading, poetry, and studying people and personality. Since 2000, Lois and her husband, Glen, have lived in New York's beautiful Hudson Valley surrounded by Glen's rose garden.
Bill Stewart - email@example.com
Bill has served as a District Lay Speaker and is an Associate of Holy Cross Monastery in West Park NY.
Bill is a 1979 graduate of the Culinary Institute in Hyde Park NY and for many years worked in Business Dining. Since 1997 has worked in full time food service ministry at The Tuscarora Inn, a large Christian conference center in Mt Bethel PA, that is owned by the Lutheran Brethren Church.
Bill grew up with his wife Peggy, attending grade school , church and confirmation together. They were married in the church where they grew up in 1986,and moved to the Poconos. They have three grown children.
Bob Stoudt - BobStoudt@aol.com
Bob retired from pastoral ministry in the United Church of Christ in 2014. He served as Pastor of the Penbrook United Church of Christ, Harrisburg for over 40 years.
Bill received a B.S. in Secondary Education with a Major in English from Bloomsburg University (1970); an M. Div. from Lancaster Theological Seminary (1973); a D.Min. from Lancaster Theological Seminary (1979), with an emphasis in the area of spirituality. His doctoral project was the development and testing of an original retreat model by which to foster spiritual growth; M.S. in Community Counseling, Shippensburg University (1997).
He also served private clients as a Board certified and licensed Professional Counselor in the State of PA; and completed a Jungian-oriented training program for Spiritual Guides (1993), at the Guild for Spiritual Guidance, Rye, New York.
Cynthia Willis - firstname.lastname@example.org
Cynthia oversees and coordinates visitation for limited activity members of Wesley UMC, Bloomsburg PA. She maintains accurate listings of home bound members; initiates personal contact with members as needed; coordinates ministry or regular visitation; recruits, trains, schedules volunteers; provides continual updates to pastors on emerging needs; and coordinates lay/clergy shared home communion ministry.
She also directs choirs ranging in age from 3 through teen, and prepares two worship services for local nursing home residents each month.
She has completed training for NODA (No One Dies Alone), a volunteer program at Geisinger Hospital in Danville, PA and has worked in this position as a volunteer. Cynthia is also a certified Safe Sanctuary Trainer for SUSUMC.
Cynthia studied at Western Michigan University, Goshen College, and Drake University in Florence, Italy. She has worked as a graphic artist, portrait photographer, manager, and district training manager.
Russell Hart, Center Director Emeritus - email@example.com
Russell has been a ministerial member of the Susquehanna Conference of the United Methodist Church for over fifty years, having served parishes in Three Springs, Altoona, Harrisburg and Red Lion, PA. In 1995 he became Center Director of the Center For Spiritual Formation, retiring in 2017.
He received a Ph. B. from the University of North Dakota in 1966, an M. Div. from Wesley Theological Seminary, in 1970 and a D. Min. from United Theological Seminary in 1979. In 1984 he received a call to become an iconographer and in 1991 received instruction at l’Ecole Russe de St. Georges in Meudon, France.
His publications include The Icon Through Western Eyes, Crossing The Border: An Introduction to the Practice of Christian Mysticism, and Communing With The Saints, from Templegate Publishers, and the Spanish language edition of the latter entitled En Comunion Con Los Santos, from Neo Person Publishers. He also co-authored Reclaiming Your Calling: A Guide for Managers And Supervisors In The Health & Human Service Field, Open Minds Publishers. He is a contributor to The Upper Room Dictionary of Christian Spiritual Formation, and A Guide to Prayer For All Who Seek God, also by the Upper Room.
Russell directs the Center’s two-year Ministry of Spiritual Direction program, edits The Center Quarterly, and leads retreats and seminars on sustainability and the life of prayer.
Kathy Milans - firstname.lastname@example.org
Kathy has experience as an elementary educator, teacher trainer, adjunct professor, and has served as Family Resource Director for a major hospital. Along with a B.A. and M.A. in Education, she holds an M.A. in Pastoral Counseling from Asbury Theological Seminary.
Kathy is licensed by the state of Kentucky to provide pastoral counseling and is credentialed as a Registered Play Therapist/Supervisor by the American Association of Play Therapy.