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Knox Presbyterian Church is pleased to welcome our newest staff member... Jana Rae Reister, who will serve as our Associate Pastor. Jana was officially appointed to the position of Associate Pastor by vote of the Knox congregation on Sunday August 30th. The congregational meeting followed a service in which the Rev. Reister delivered her first sermon to the congregation of Knox. You can hear that sermon here.
Jana grew up on a farm in western Michigan, and received her undergraduate degree in psychology and sociology from Hope College in Holland, Michigan in 1988. She moved to Seattle, where she worked in the financial industry from 1989 to 1996, and there became involved in small group ministries in her church. Her sense of a call to broader service led her to join the Peace Corps. In Uganda, Jana used her agricultural background in programs to increase crop yields and farmer income, and she focused in particular on helping rural women to generate their own incomes. She became involved in a village church, with a specific approach of working alongside women in that church to break down barriers and build relationships.
When she returned to Seattle, Jana continued her work in building relationships, serving as executive director of the Professional Women’s Fellowship. Jana felt more and more called to the ministry, and entered Princeton Theological Seminary in September 2004. During seminary, she worked on international missions in Peru, Belize, and Guatemala. Because of her gifts for ministry, Princeton Theological Seminary awarded her the Bryant M. Kirkland Prize for Excellence in Practical Theology and the Graduate Study Fellowship for Parish Pulpit Ministry. Upon graduation, she was chosen for the prestigious Lilly Residency at First Presbyterian Church of Ann Arbor, where she was ordained and had the chance to further hone her skills for preaching, teaching, and pastoral care. Jana sees her gift for hospitality as key to her ministry. In Seattle and Ann Arbor, Jana came to know the power of small group fellowship for transforming lives and helping both current and potential church members discover their gifts for ministry and use them in service to the life and mission of the Church.
We hope you will welcome Jana when you see her around Knox or in the community. We are truly blessed to have her with us at Knox!