Reverend Charlene Hill
Rev. Charlene Hill is the Pastor-Elect of the United Church of Hyde Park. She began her ministry with us on Sunday, November 20, preaching at the 10:30 a.m. service. Pastor Charlene has led the Good News Community Church United Church of Christ of Rogers Park in Chicago for the past nine years. Like Hyde Park United, Good News Church is a multicultural, inter-generational congregation. As the daughter of a military man, Charlene’s childhood years were equally divided between islands, urban areas, and rural America. Her worship experience was also diverse, including Baptist (childhood years), charismatic non-denominational, Mennonite, and now the United Church of Christ. Her life experiences inform her spirituality and contribute to her passion for pastoring a church where variety and differences are celebrated as God’s creative artistry.
Pastor Charlene is a graduate of McCormick Theological Seminary (M.Div.) and the University of Chicago (M.A.). She has been an ordained minister for eleven years. She is bi-vocational, finding meaning and passion in being a psychotherapist part-time. Pastor Charlene has served UCC congregations in Galewood and Bryn Mawr, as well as the Reba Place Mennonite Church. She authors a blog, www.smallstuffsweat.org. She is the proud parent of Josiah Hill. Her family includes her partner, Danielle, also an ordained minister, and stepson Ezekiel. She enjoys time with family and friends, as well as traveling, reading, crocheting, photography, scrapbooking and writing letters on beautiful stationery. We welcome our new pastor, the Rev. Charlene Hill.
Director of Music – Organist
Joe Wilkinson, relocated to Chicago from Kansas City, Missouri in January 2017. He is a graduate of Baldwin-Wallace College where he studied with Dr. Warren A. Scharf and Dr. Margaret Rickerd Scharf receiving a Bachelor of Music in Organ Performance and Bachelor of Music Education. His organ study continued at the Graduate level at the University of Kansas. Joe has played recitals at the Cleveland Museum of Art and several World Conferences of the Community of Christ in Independence, Missouri (formerly the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.) He began playing organ professionally while in high school. Prior to joining United Church of Hyde Park, Joe was organist and Music Coordinator at Country Club Methodist in Kansas City, Missouri. He served at various congregations in the Kansas City area including Grace United Methodist Church, Asbury United Methodist Church, as Director of Music and Organist at Ward Parkway Presbyterian Church and as Chapel Organist at Unity world headquarters, Unity Village, Missouri. He also still serves as a Staff Organist at the Community of Christ Temple and Auditorium in Independence, Missouri.