Rev. Marlene comes to us from St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, a 400-member parish in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where she has been for the past eight years. Marlene was born and raised in Minnesota, and she worked for many years in youth ministries and as a juvenile corrections counselor before attending seminary. In 2005, she began her career as Assistant Rector at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Kalamazoo, Michigan before moving to St. Paul’s as Rector in 2007.
When we compared Rev. Marlene to the descriptions of “The Rector We Seek” from our parish profile, we found her to be a perfect fit. She is, as we’d hoped, “a person who leads a Christ-centered, spiritual life” and who is “approachable, warm, a good listener, and interested in us as individuals within the larger congregation.” Her homilies “make clear and compelling connections between the Gospel readings and everyday life.”
All of the committee members felt God’s guidance throughout the entire process and are confident that we are walking the path He has laid out for us. Rev. Marlene is a skillful preacher, a caring listener, a fast friend, and a wonderful priest. She also has a lovely sense of humor and an innate connection with children and youth of all kinds. One of her previous coworkers said that she “exudes joy.” She loves the outdoors and spends much of her free time hiking, cycling, and cross-country skiing with her two Huskies. She’s excited to see what our northwest mountains have to offer!
Here’s Rev. Marlene’s greeting to us, her new parish:
Greetings in the name of Christ dear members of St Luke’s Memorial! By now you have heard from the search committee of their good and gratifying work. I too am amazed at how all of this came together and continues to do so. I can’t wait to meet you and to begin our new ministry together. How exciting! Blessings to you, and we’ll see you on the Feast of All Saints!
Rev. Marlene will spend the next few weeks putting her affairs in order at St. Paul’s and moving to Tacoma. In the meantime, you can find more information on her (and many of her homilies) by looking at the web site for St. Paul’s in Minneapolis, reading her bio on our Diocesan web site, or by asking any of us on the Discernment Committee. We are finally free of all our confidentiality constraints, and we’re happy to answer any questions you might have. We’re all excited for all of you to meet her—we know you’ll welcome her and will love her just as much as we do.