I was born and raised in South Africa, and when I climb off the plane when visiting family, the air still smells right. Then I spent a few decades in London, UK, working out how to follow Jesus as a daughter, a sister, a wife, a mother to three wonderful people … and a High School math teacher.
And then a move to the USA -- and no more calculus, but theology and ordination and 7+ fabulous years working at Restoration Anglican Church, leading outreach (my passion) and learning how to be a priest.
2017 dawned and God started explaining the next chapter -- and here we are, delighting in the adventure of church planting in South Arlington where Simon (my splendid husband) and I are always ready to hang out, eat take-out, drink some good wine, hunker down over a good jigsaw or novel or maybe take Poppie (the puppy) and head out to hike a mountain! We love to travel and wonder at all God has made!
My background in social work and international affairs has carried me through five continents. I’ve sung karaoke with communist officials in a bus in rural Vietnam; endured malaria in a mud hut in Uganda; had an illegal visa issued by a rebel army using a typewriter and blue construction paper; been saved from a charging ostrich by my resourceful husband; slurped shark fin soup with intoxicated Chinese bureaucrats; and laughed and cried and shared stories with some pretty amazing people along the way.
When I’m not fending off ostrich attacks, I freelance as a graphic designer through my practice, Sparrow & Sea, and am pursuing ordination to the priesthood. I love Madeleine L’Engle and Wendell Berry and backyard birds and strong coffee. I live with my husband and two kids and lots and lots of books in a little house with a yellow mailbox in South Arlington.
DIRECTOR OF MUSICAL WORSHIP
I was born into a military family and spent my early years moving from east coast bases to Bermuda and back. My musical journey started when I learned to play the saxophone at school, mostly because I wanted to be Clarence Clemons when I grew up. When I hit moody adolescence, I taught myself to play the guitar from an old ‘70’s workbook and by listening to and watching my sister’s friends play.
I met the Lord in high school and began to play music sporadically at my parents’ church in Fredericksburg, VA. In college at Mary Washington, I was entrusted with a weekly worship service when its leaders graduated. Since then, I’ve been blessed to be a part of Restoration Anglican Church, where I was trained from rhythm-guitar-helper to frightened-but-excited vocal and guitar leader.
When the idea of Incarnation was born, I felt a clear call to come along and help out. I’m excited to see how God speaks to people in a unique way through music and how a new gathering of believers will shape the musical worship of the Lord in this community of South Arlington. Extras! I’m a huge fan of military history, baked goods, and hammocks. I travel to the ends of the earth whenever I can to meet people from every culture and to eat their delicious food. My favorite movie is Casablanca, and my favorite sound is baby laughter. I cry every time I hear the song “How Far I’ll Go” from Moana—I have no idea why. Most importantly, I love the Lord and long for all the folks I encounter to know His love, mercy, and grace.
LEAD CHILDREN'S CATECHIST
Once, for a team building exercise, I had to list three joy-filled moments from my life. This is what I came up with: 1) sitting high up in the magnolia tree next to the house where I grew up in Memphis; 2) playing soccer on Sunday afternoons with my husband and friends from our Spanish-speaking church in Alexandria, VA, where running and laughing communicated better than my limited language skills could; and 3) finishing The Brothers Karamozov on the balcony of my apartment my last year of college, crying and feeling that life could not be more beautiful.
What else do you need to know?
I lasted a short time in DC's political world before joining the staff of Little Lights Urban Ministries, where I loved connecting the resources of individuals and churches from across the spectrum of political ideology, race, and age—to the mission of sharing Christ's love with kids and families in a particular DC neighborhood. I still delight in the diversity of the church. Because my husband's family moved to the states from Mexico, my respect for the immigrant experience has deepened over the years, and these days I love helping with the adult English classes at another wonderful neighborhood-based non-profit, Casa Chirilagua.
Now that I stay at home with our young children, I've enjoyed observing their joy in hearing about the God who knows and loves them. During our family's short-lived attempt to get out of the Washington, DC area, we lived in Nashville, where we hosted a weekly dinner for cousins and friends every Sunday for a year (!) and had our third child. During that time I had the opportunity to train in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, which is a lovely religious formation program that draws from the Montessori method and enables children to engage with the Gospel at their developmental level. I'm excited for the children and adults at Incarnation to learn from one another as we worship together. I hope that the children—just like the adults!—will find Incarnation to be a place to slow down, a place that fosters prayer, community, and joy in knowing Jesus, the Good Shepherd.
DEACON & MISSIONARY IN TRAINING
I am Katie Johnson Hamlin and I was ordained a deacon in October 2020. I was raised in Pennsylvania and lived in Washington, DC for about 15 years while working around the world in international development. I most recently lived in Bangkok and served at Christ Church, a multi-cultural church in the Anglican tradition, before returning to DC in the summer of 2020. I am married to Darin and we have three children – Brendan, Asher, and Elisa.
I am Quauhtli Olivieri Herrera and I am a postulant for the Vocational Diaconate. Born in Mexico, raised in Puerto Rico, and having lived for 17 years in North Carolina, prior to moving to the DC area, I am blessed to be part of a multicultural and multilingual upbringing, which I consider a great asset in advancing God’s Kingdom in the DC-Maryland-Virginia region. As part of prior ministries, I served in middle school and high school youth group leadership and, alongside my wife Kathryn, led a church-led college student ministry at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. I previously served as an Infantryman in the NC Army National Guard, earned my B.A. in Political Science from North Carolina State University, and a Master of Public Policy degree from the Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy.
David is a postulant for Holy Orders. He has a very patient wife and three magnificent children. David is an academic by training but a pastor at heart. He joined Incarnation from the beginning and enjoys wearing many hats in ministry.
Incarnation's leadership team
Incarnation's wise and capable vestry, from L to R: Top: Liz Gray (Rector), Nancy Sung (Warden), Clayton Clark (Warden); Middle: Patrick Sahm, Emily Williams (Secretary), Ben Goebel (Treasurer); Bottom: Jenni McSwain.