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Associate pastor helps people find their talents


August 09, 2012
It is part of Christina Veres goal to help people find and disseminate their natural talents.

Rev. Chris Veres is the new associate minister at First English Evangelical Lutheran Church. photo by Ann L. Fouty.
"Part of my goal is always to help other people discover what their strengths are," she said.

Everyone has special talents and she said it is her commitment to help guide them to use those talents to benefit the church or community.

"Especially helping youth, to keep them interested in the church, seeing their gifts and where they can be used both for them and the community," Veres said.

As First English Evangelical Lutheran Church's new associate pastor, the mother of three grown children and grandmother to one, took on her duties in mid-July.

Ordained July 14, she was installed at First English July 29. She is working with parish education, fellowship and social action, with a special emphasis on youth and confirmation ministries. Veres, who is called Pastor Chris, will also share hospital and homebound member calling with Rev. Walter Schmidt, as well as preach about a third of the Sundays. Veres can preside at baptisms, weddings and funerals.

A native of Corning, N.Y., she was raised in the Missouri Synod until switching to Evangelical Synod, with her husband, Robert, a retired engineer from Ford Motor Company. The couple's three children live in Chicago, Arizona and California.

One of her first duties at First English is to accompany the church's youth to a musically-oriented camp in northern Macomb County.

"I've always lived with music. I love to sing, but I'm not professionally trained," she said.

Veres said she is happy to be at the Grosse Pointe Woods church.

"I'm feeling privileged to be called to this congregation," she said. "I'm looking forward to bringing the ministry and sharing ministry with Pastor Schmidt."

Veres has a bachelor's degree in elementary education and a master's degree in psychology. Knowing she would always return to academia at some point, Veres began pursuing a theology track because, she said she has always been involved with her church in various capacities.

She attended Ecumen-ical Theological Semin-ary in Detroit part time while caring for her mother, whom she had moved to Michigan from New York.

Veres attended the Lutheran School of Theo-logy in Chicago, graduating May 13, with a Master of Divinity degree.

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