Our Resident Ministers
First Pres welcomed our tenth cohort of Resident Ministers in August of 2021. Megan Berry, Hannah Lundberg and Rev. Matthew J. Warfield arrived full of energy, vision and passion for ministry and leadership here in Ann Arbor and immediately began an intentional process of on-boarding here into the life of First Pres.
Megan graduated in May 2021 from Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary. She spent her undergraduate years at Drury University in Springfield, Mo., where she earned a BA degree in Music with a Psychology minor in December 2017 and served an internship in a local church to explore Christian ministry. A flutist, Megan envisioned a career as a musician or music educator before discerning a call to serve as a pastor for small congregations.
Megan comes from Independence, Mo., and has worked in an administrative position in her home parish and as a seminarian at an urban church in Kansas City. A candidate for ministry in the Presbyterian Church (USA) in her home presbytery, Heartland Presbytery in Kansas, Megan will be ordained this fall after completing a full unit of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) in Kansas City over the summer.
At seminary, her special interests included Christian Education and youth ministries, and she completed all requirements for Louisville’s concentration in Christian Education. Megan has shared two experiences that formed her call to ministry. First, she was shaped by working with children and youth as a counselor in her local Presbyterian camp ministry. Second, she credits worshiping in a PCUSA congregation with a female pastor and many female elders for opening the windows and doors that have led her towards parish ministry. In her application for our program, Megan wrote: “I want to start working full time in a parish setting where I will be surrounded by those who want to encourage me in ministry as well as give me constructive guidance. I think this program will be helpful for my goals because of its learning structure, focus on growing a pastoral identity, and deepening my current strengths for ministry.” One of her seminary professors offered: “She is the kind of pastor who could be my pastor – and I don’t say that very often.”
Hannah received her Master of Divinity degree in May from Union Theological Seminary in New York. She grew up in southern California, but moved to the Midwest to attend Grinnell College in Grinnell, Iowa, graduating with a degree in English and global development studies in 2018. Her time at Grinnell helped her reframe her faith, connect with several nourishing interfaith groups, develop healthy mentoring relationships with the campus chaplain and rabbi, and settle into an active life in the faith community of the First Presbyterian Church of Grinnell. There she found the space and scope to ask the hard questions of faith that led her to a call to ministry.
In the dynamic interfaith setting of Union Seminary and the Upper West Side of New York, Hannah found that her work as coordinator for the seminary’s daily chapel services added depth to her sense of pastoral vocation, as did her fieldwork at the nearby Broadway Presbyterian Church. Hannah hopes that her Residency experience “will help me hone and develop my pastoral voice as a Presbyterian.” She would like to work with college students and young adults and engage in all the ways that our church ministers to the university community in Ann Arbor. First Pres, she believes, will introduce her to a “wide range of ministry contexts” and prepare her for effective ministry. “I’m always surprised and delighted by the new ways I learn about God from the people and communities I meet; I know that will be true in Ann Arbor as well.” A candidate for ministry in the PCUSA in her home Presbytery in Iowa, Hannah anticipates ordination in the fall. According to her seminary chaplain, in her writing, preaching, speaking and learning about Christianity, her spirituality is almost palpable: “I’ve gone back to some of her sermons at Chapel and asked for the texts because they’re so rich and spiritual.”
Rev. Matthew J. Warfield
Matt hails from western Michigan and grew up by the Lake in Holland. He is a boyhood friend and seminary classmate of Rev. Mark Mares, our Minister for Youth and Families. Matt was ordained by the Holland Classis of the Reformed Church in America (RCA) as a Minister of Word and Sacrament on June 27. Several members of our Resident Ministry Work Group attended the service. As a minister in the RCA, Matt can serve a Presbyterian Church (USA) congregation under the Formula of Agreement, which recognizes the validity of ordination status among pastors in the PCUSA, the RCA, the United Church of Christ, and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Matt earned a BS in Psychology from Grand Valley State before completing his Master of Divinity degree at Western Theological Seminary in Holland in 2017. Since graduation he has served as associate pastor (part-time) at Embody Christ Fellowship (RCA) in Holland and has a long history of work with young people in his community. Matt has also worked as an office manager and salesperson for Prestige Auto Sales. As a child and teenager, Matt was an avid basketball player, but he also loved reading and creative writing. He first read Langston Hughes in elementary school and began writing poetry at that time. When he was 12, he was given the opportunity to preach at his home church, Maple Avenue Ministries (RCA) in Holland. From that moment, he had a growing sense that his life’s work would be to proclaim the gospel and stand for justice on behalf of the “least of these” in our society. Matt has a warm and engaging pastoral presence. On his Residency Program application, Matt wrote: “I believe that becoming a Resident at First Pres will prepare and mature me like no other program. First Pres’ commitment and work toward abolishing systemic racism, white privilege and gaining lasting justice and equality make a perfect fit for my God-given call.”