As a cradle Episcopalian, I attended St. Christopher’s School, an Episcopal Church school in Richmond, VA. I met my wife, Mary Wright, at the University of Virginia. After law school, we settled in Northern Virginia and found a vibrant, family oriented community at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Burke, where we supported our two daughters through Sunday school, choirs, youth groups and acolyting. I served as a LEM and a stewardship team member. In 2005, with our daughters grown, we began searching for a new church home. When we heard that a new congregation was forming at the Cathedral, we looked no further. We were both enthusiastic participants in the Cathedral’s DOCC program. At an early congregation meeting I signed up to help with stewardship and, as it worked out, I headed up that ministry for the next 6 years. I also served on the Cathedral Development Committee and on the original congregation advisory group now called the CCC. Having recently retired after 29 years in the Environment and Natural Resources Division at the Department of Justice, I am looking forward to a more active role at the Cathedral and to enjoying my grandchildren.
Our family—my husband Bob and our two daughters, Lora and Lisa, and I—joined the congregation in 2014. We had attended services at the Cathedral for 8 years prior to relocating to Montgomery County. I grew up in the church and my faith is the center of my life. I worked at the local church level in areas of Christian Education and program development. In 2014 I organized a community anti-bully event. I’m a federal retiree, co-founder of The Good Shepherd School in Mt. Airy, MD, and was CEO of Organization Development Consulting for 10 years. In addition, I provided academic instruction to children diagnosed with life-threatening illness for Carroll County Public Schools. For the past 30 years I have served as a volunteer with Special Love, Inc., a nonprofit organization providing recreational activities for children in treatment with cancer. I am also a member of Capital Encore Chorale. I serve as an usher and am a member of the Congregation Community Life Committee which sponsors events such as the monthly potlucks and periodic hymn sings.
Raised as a Presbyterian by an Episcopalian mother, my connection to the Cathedral came via my work at St. Albans where I was the Lower School librarian, as well as the involvement of my 3 children at the Cathedral schools. I started as an usher and have since become a Lay Eucharistic Minister (LEM) and a Healing minister. I find the Cathedral a place of comfort, inspiration and friendship. I joined the Christian Formation Committee in 2016 and co-facilitated with Karen Miles the first of our “brown-bag” Sunday discussion series on leadership called Leadership Then and Now: Exploring the Servant Leader. I continue to be involved with children’s literature as an instructor at the University of Maryland and an active member of the American Library Association Service to Children.
I am a “cradle Episcopalian.” I sang in my church choir, attended an Episcopal girls’ school, and was president of a Young People’s Fellowship group (YPF) in Waterbury, CT. While at Harvard, I did not attend church much. After getting an MLS degree at Rutgers, I got a job at UC-Davis. A year later, I moved back east to work at the Library of Congress. In 1966, I married Bruce Conger and went to work at Princeton University. After working at Albion College and Yale, I moved to DC where I worked in the US Department of State Library until I retired in 2001. In 1976, I started attending church again—at the Cathedral. I also started volunteering at the Cathedral, in the Development Office and as an usher. Later, I became a lay reader and a communion minister. When the Congregation was forming, I joined the Pastoral Care committee, out of which came the Congregation Prayer ministry, which I began and continue to coordinate. I am also a healing minister and a Eucharistic Visitor.
I was initially drawn to the Cathedral in 2005 by a program on centering prayer led by Reverend Eugene Sutton who was serving as the director of the Center for Prayer and Pilgrimage. I began attending services to hear Gene Sutton preach and soon discovered that Cathedral clergy were uniformly thoughtful, engaging preachers who left me feeling informed and nourished by their words. After my husband and I joined the newly-formed Cathedral congregation, we participated in DOCC (Disciples of Christ in Community) which helped us develop a sense of community. This experience led me to volunteer at the Cathedral, including facilitating classes on Transforming Literature of the Bible, serving on the Stewardship committee, and currently co-chairing the Outreach and Social Justice Committee. Both my husband and I also serve as Eucharistic visitors. I retired in 2014 after working as a clinical social worker in community mental health followed by a second career as a faculty member at the University of Maryland School of Social Work. As a volunteer, I currently teach classes in local detention facilities.
I came to the Cathedral in 2008, first brought in by the music, and joined the Episcopal Church and the congregation and the in 2011. Having not attended any church for many years, this place, the clergy and the congregation have assisted me in a positive, life changing experience. Born in New York City, I have a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and an AAS – Physical Therapist Assistant. I have worked, at various times, as a correspondent, as a psychiatric social work assistant, as a claims examiner (following my move to Bethesda, Maryland in 1976), and as a program analyst for 26 years. The last 23 years of my federal service was in the Office of the Director, at the National Institutes of Health. Following retirement, I spent two years in training, and have since worked as a licensed physical therapist assistant. At the Cathedral, I am in the Greeters and Martha’s Table Ministries and represent the Hospitality Ministries on the Cathedral Congregation Committee.
A cradle Episcopalian, I grew up outside Philadelphia, and joined the Cathedral after moving to Washington in 2012. Since then, I have been heavily involved with the 20s&30s group, planning and hosting monthly and annual events. I am particularly interested in those activities that allow us to reach beyond the confines of our group and serve the broader community. In that spirit, I am honored to serve on the Outreach and Social Justice committee and the Cathedral Congregation Committee. My husband and I were married at the Cathedral in 2016, and make our home nearby. I work as a journalist, and enjoy riding horses in my spare time.
Dr. Ken Myrie
I graduated from the University of Michigan, earning a PhD in human genetics and manage a scientific research portfolio of infectious and pulmonary diseases for the Veterans Administration. I’ve been a member of the Cathedral since 2003, sharing my gifts and talents in a variety of Cathedral ministries including as Lector and Communion minister, Eucharistic visitor, and as a member of the Cathedral 20s & 30s. One of the most profoundly inspiring moments I experienced at the Cathedral was the All Souls liturgy at the High Altar in 2009: the opening Gregorian chant, the sublime text of the Fauré Requiem, plumes of incense rising from the altar, and echoes of Sanctus, Sanctus all combined to make me feel as if I were being baptized and set apart again. With the incense climbing the Cathedral columns I thought of Isaiah’s dream— his vision of God in the temple—and that potent question: “Whom shall I send?” (Isaiah 6). The pivots of the Cathedral did not shake but this liturgy spoke to me of the certainty that God is with us all the days of our lives, even in the valley of death—and brought him peace and healing.
I have been affiliated with the Episcopal Church for more than thirty years and with the National Cathedral for eleven years. I serve as a member of the Development Committee, Cathedral Scholars Committee, and more recently was appointed to the Cathedral Congregation Committee. Prior to that I served as an usher and, for several summers, a tour guide under the Cathedral’s extended visiting summer hours program. Before moving to Washington DC in 2005, I was an active member of St. John’s Episcopal Church in North Baltimore, and served on the Vestry Board and was a lay reader. For seven years, I was a volunteer at St. Vincent’s Home, a residential facility for abused and neglected children in Towson, Maryland.
My 20-year life at the Cathedral started when my wife Helen volunteered to support the newly established Center of Prayer and Pilgrimage. As an active member of St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church, I served as co-chair of the Stewardship Committee, chair of a seminarian discernment committee, and as a lay Eucharistic minister, led monthly services at Grand Oaks Assisted Living Community for seven years. I joined the Cathedral to deepen my spiritual life as a leader. I draw on my work in leadership roles transforming organizations in the private and public sectors. In this capacity I founded Corner Office Coach, a consulting firm that develops senior executives’ capabilities to lead teams to achieve business goals. I have a PhD from Iowa State University and currently am a docent at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum (Udvar Hazy Center).
After many years working in corporate and non-profit organizations, I am studying Pastoral Care and Counseling at Loyola University Maryland. The Cathedral has been an important part of my life since the first Forum illustrated to me that this is a place of spiritual exploration and service. Carrying forward that theme, I have been a DOCC (Disciples of Christ in Community) and TLB (Transforming Literature of the Bible) facilitator, greeter, refreshment minister, prison minister, Lay Eucharistic Minister and member of the LGBT group at the Cathedral. What I love about the Cathedral is that we have an incredibly beautiful and sacred building in which an incredibly nurturing and growing community of Christians has shared and enhanced my spiritual journey.
I was born, baptized and confirmed in the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts. Until my voice changed I was a chorister and loved the singing, the music and as much as anything it
drew me onto the spiritual plane and it still does. As a young adult at the University of Massachusetts, I was born again, became active in campus ministry and joined a local non-denominational church. It was there that preaching first reached me and I came to know and sense the Holy Spirit in a deeper way. By our mid-late 20s Melissa and I were members at St Paul’s Cathedral, Boston and active young adults. We moved to Springfield, MA, and joined the congregation of Christ Church Cathedral (Diocese of Western Mass). Over 15 years there we worked, raised two daughters and I became deeply involved in church life. In that time, I served in many capacities including Treasurer and Chairperson of the Cathedral Chapter. Since 2002 my church service at the WNC has been as an usher and more recently as Reader and LEM.
Being a Christian is full of joy and challenges. I first came to the Cathedral in 1975. I arrived in DC, accepted as a graduate student at Howard University. While growing up in the Midwest, the Episcopal church was introduced to me by mother and father at birth. My family instilled in me that my existence was based on something much greater than myself. The journey begins and enlightenment comes later and I believe it continues for the rest of our lives. For my husband and me, the Cathedral has become that place where family and friends share the Word of God, attending the Holy Eucharist, Rite I at 8 am. This service in St. Mary’s Chapel has flourished into a warm kinship group that welcomes all. A special love, appreciation and joy has spilled over the entire congregation including newcomers and out of town visitors. This early morning service begins the day with prayer, mediation and fellowship. Every Sunday is new because we are worshiping and praying together. We are caring for each other. The Cathedral has enhanced my journey and encouraged me to step into God’s light, grace, and love.
I witnessed the gradual building of the Cathedral and fondly remember watching the stone carvers in their shed on the west lawn. Although I was a frequent visitor to the gardens and Cathedral bookstore over the years, I only started worshiping at the Cathedral in 2005, drawn by the invitation to help build the congregation. DOCC (Disciples of Christ in Community) had a profound effect on me. I was almost immediately drawn into urban ministry by then Canon Missioner William Barnwell. I also volunteered in the A-V archives and in the Worship Department. It was my joy to sing in the Cathedral Voices and to help develop our congregation communications for the Vicar’s Office. Memorable times include special visits over the years by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu and services such as the Easter Vigil and Advent Lessons and Carols. Just as special to me, are the weekly Sunday coffee hours with fellow pilgrims. I treasure our community time together— supporting each other and sharing news, humor, and reflections!