Born in Missouri and raised in Vancouver, Canada, Andrew studied Mechanical Engineering at the University of British Columbia before working in the airline industry. He then went on to complete a Master of Divinity at Regent College and graduated from the Arrow Leadership program. Prior to arriving at Washington Community Fellowship, Andrew served as a Site Pastor at Tenth Church, a bustling multi-cultural, city-center church in Vancouver. A constant learner, he’s passionate about helping people encounter the timeless reality of Christ found in Scripture for the contemporary world we live in. Most of all, he loves to look for glimmers of God’s grace at work in the lives of people and opportunities for Jesus-followers to embody God’s love and justice in the homes, workplaces and the world.
Born in Texas, raised in Alabama, previously serving in ministry in Georgia, and now as youth pastor at C3 Calvary Community Church in Hampton, Virginia, Pastor Chris Cox has devoted his life to mentoring, molding, and maintaining relationships with youth & young adults throughout the nation. He enthusiastically seeks to connect with individuals in the places they are most comfortable. He desires to be where the people are, helping youth & adults to not only discover who they are, but who God is trying to mold them into.
Andrew was born and raised in Rockingham County, Va., where he grew up with several overlapping extended families. His family attended Park View Mennonite Church. He and Molly Buckwalter were married the summer after graduating Goshen College, and in 2010 served with MCC in China, initially as English instructors and in their final year assisting with translation and English-language communications for the Zhi Mian Institute for Psychotherapy. Returning to the US, Andrew finished his Master of Divinity degree at Princeton Theological Seminary, and now serves as pastor at Christiansburg Mennonite Fellowship.
Maren Hange is an artist, spiritual director and co-pastor of Charlottesville Mennonite Church with her husband Roy. Maren serves as VMC representative to the MCC East Coast board where she currently chairs the anti-oppression committee. Since August 12, 2017 she has been active in anti-racism work with the Charlottesville Clergy Collective and through a 2019 Louisville Institute Grant that looked at the role of the arts and non-violent communication to open spaces of engagement. Originally from Germany, with years served in Syria and Iran, Maren and Roy live in Charlottesville and are the parents of three mostly grown children.
Juan Carlos is an ordained minister in Virginia Mennonite Conference, serving as pastor of Manantial de Vida, a bilingual and multicultural congregation in Harrisonburg, Va. He is married to Wendy Malvaez and is the father of two boys (13 and 11) and a girl (8). Juan Carlos is currently a student in Eastern Mennonite Seminary’s Master of Divinity program.
Aldine lived her first 18 years in a community with a variety of cultures, mostly black Americans. She doesn’t believe this made her anti-racist. She says she wasn’t conscious of white privilege until sometime later. Serving on the Racial Justice Task Force is an opportunity to learn and hopefully help all of us become more aware of changes we need to make to improve VMC. Currently, Aldine and her husband, Jim provide housing and meals for a Blind Ethiopian man. They have become friends and share meals with their Hispanic neighbors. Aldine cares for their grandchildren who are from German/Swiss, Asian, and African descent and serves as one of the Northern District Ministers.
Tami and her husband Keith have been leading a house fellowship Outlet 10.27 for over 10 years. She serves on the Pastoral Leadership Team for Greensboro Mennonite Fellowship. She served as the council chair for the Eastern Carolina District and on Conference Council for 3 years. Tami has been a self-learner regarding social justice and racial inequity and has a heart for the church and its role in changing our societal norms.
Vivian is the President and owner of Marthas Medical Transportation, is a real estate investor, and is presently a pastoral care minister and team leader for the prayer ministry at C3 Hampton. She graduated from Franklin High School in Franklin, Va., and completed a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Old Dominion University. She is a member of NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) and served on the Board of Directors for NAMI-Western Tidewater, and was instrumental in starting the NAMI Suffolk, Va., chapter. As an advocate, she continues to assist families navigating the judicial and medical aspect of mental health. Vivian is also a graduate of Project Inclusion, a program sponsored by United Way to train minorities to serve on boards and commissions.
Sarah Ann Bixler shares a devotion with Virginia Mennonite Conference Winter Delegate Session delegates.
Dr. Lesley Francisco McClendon, Senior Pastor of C3 Hampton (Calvary Community Church), Hampton, Va., shares with delegates about her experiences as a church leader of color.
Harrisonburg City Mayor Deanna Reed shares about her experiences as a person of color in local government.
Cedric A. Moore, Jr., shares a message for Virginia Mennonite Conference based on his experiences as a person of color in the church.
Bishop Leslie W. Francisco III shares a message for Virginia Mennonite Conference based on his experiences as a leader and person of color in the church.
Paula Stoltzfus leads delegates in a guided time of reflection, confession, and lament about racial prejudice and injustices faced by persons of color in the church.