Andrew Krpata, Pastor
Pastor Andy’s personal mission is to grow people into the fullness of whose they are. What does that mean? It means that God has gifted each one of us with all kinds of ways to bless one another. However,we need to discover those ways and learn how to use them together to be what Wesley Church declares as their mission: to be people blessing people. To fully realize who we are and to reach out as loved and gifted children of God leads to a life of satisfaction and great joy – to the glory of God in Christ Jesus!
Andy was ordained in the United Methodist Church in 2007, but has been pastoring since 1998. He has served four churches in the past in PA and NC. His undergraduate degree is in music education attained from Susquehanna University in 1993. He plays trombone and tuba, having done so ever since serving in the Marine Corps band from 1993-1997. Following the service, and after teaching for two years in NC public schools, he and his wife Melinda moved to PA to serve as a student local pastor while attending and eventually receiving his Master of Divinity from Evangelical School of Theology (now Evangelical Theological Seminary) in Myerstown, PA; Magna cum Laude.
Along the way, Andy and Meilnda have raised (and still are raising) four boys: Andrew (18), twins Timothy and Aaron (both 15), and Caleb (10). Melinda is the instrumental music director at Philadelphia-Montgomery Christian Academy, where the three younger Krpata boys go to school. The three older boys hold down jobs at Chick-fil- A and Andrew is also employed by Harwood Design, Inc./Spurrier Medical in Bristol. Buster the dog, and cats Snubbles (short for snot bubbles) and Brewster round out the family.
Pastor Andy received numerous awards, letters of appreciation, certificates, a meritorious promotion and other accolades while serving in the Corps, and was awarded the J.C. Christman Practical Theology Award upon graduating seminary. Since then, he has served churches of varying sizes from 10 – 350 in attendance, and currently serves the Eastern PA Conference on the Board of Ordained Ministry as the Candidacy and Mentoring Liaison. His passions include offering creative, excellent, God-pleasing worship, and seeing the church – any church – become and maintain a true community. Future plans include having a ball at Wesley Church and pursuing a Doctor of Ministry degree.
Bob Keiderling, Minister of Discipleship. Connect with Bob
Bob has always had a desire to help people take the next right step in their relationship with Christ by connecting them to people and resources that help them move from seekers to followers to disciples to leaders. Bob’s connection points come from mentoring and counseling along with care and community groups. He served at Northland Church in Longwood, Florida as Pastor for Community Life, serving as a connection point in pastoral care, equipping, congregational care and congregational services. The role served to build bridges between these departments allowing people to be discipled right where they are at. It allowed Bob to train and teach as well as overseeing various care ministries such as Stephen Ministry, DivorceCare, Celebrate Recovery, Blended Families, Children of Elderly Parents and GriefShare. He was also active in pastoral care, averaging 8 hours a week in pastoral counseling and visitation. There were also sacerdotal duties such as weddings, funerals and baby dedications that Bob performed. Included in those duties were recruiting, overseeing, training and debriefing Ministers on Duty, a team of volunteer counselors and lay leaders who served in four hour shifts to counsel and pray with walk ins.
From there Bob moved to Durham, N.C., serving as Minister of Discipleship at Mc Mannen UMC. A strategy for making disciples was developed, Twelve Months of Discipleship, and structured with an emphasis on reaching out to community by meeting their practical and felt needs. A twelve week church wide initiative developed and taught by Bob based on the book, “Why Nobody Wants to Go to Church Anymore.” Fifty people participated, learning how to implement Radical Hospitality, Fearless Conversation, Genuine Humility and Divine Anticipation. A 10 week curriculum was developed and presented as a SS class on God’s View and Our Role in Poverty. An all -encompassing ministry to single parents was created that consisted of a 13 week support group and supplying food, help with bills as well as directing them to programs in Durham County that may make raising their family a little easier. In addition to ushers and greeter a HUB team, Helping U Belong, was create to answer any questions visitors may have and help them connect to MUMC.
Bob’s entry point into ministry came while he was still a truck driver, serving as Director of Men’s Ministry at Calvary Baptist Church in Bethlehem, PA, and in full-time ministry to men for 11 years prior to serving at Northland, working with Men of Faith, Top Gun Ministries, Great Dads and Man in the Mirror at a faculty or staff level. He was chosen as Emerging Leader of the Year by National Coalition of Men’s Ministries in 2004. Bob earned his Bachelor of Science & Masters in Religious Education, both with honors, at Liberty Theological Seminary.
He and his partner in ministry, Donna, have been married for 39 years. They have three adult children: daughter Jenn, her husband Jay and son Caiden; daughter Amy, husband Andrew and daughter Anna; son Bobby, his wife Renee and daughter Lydia. Two more grandchildren are on the way. Donna currently works for Compass Ministries: Finances God’s Way in Altamonte Springs, FL since 2011. She has also served at Man in the Mirror and Meals on Wheels. Donna shares the same passion for seeing people grow in their faith.
Bob is excited about the opportunity to fulfill God’s vision for Wesley to become a hub for outreach in the community by reaching out to others in tangible ways. The leadership here is committed to disciple everyone in the church and to be intentional in discovering and meeting the felt needs of its neighbors. It is a great time to be at Wesley.
Allan Birney, Organist and Director of Music Connect with Allan
Now in his 17th year at Wesley, Allan directs the Chancel Choir and is responsible for the music for traditional worship (Classic Service). He is also music director for the church's 'Music@Wesley'series featuring outside artists in varied programs. During his 60 years of music ministry he has held music director and/or organist positions in ten different church denominations as well as reform and conservative synagogues. Allan received degrees from Oberlin Conservatory (B. Mus.), the Yale
In his spare time he swims, plays tennis, teaches piano students and reads books about research dealing with the brain. Allan resides in Coopersburg with his wife, Lynn, a lifetime member of Wesley Church, and their four cats, several beehives and three chickens.
Frank Arbushites, Director of Bell Choirs Connect with Frank
Becky Graybeal, Ensemble Coordinator Connect with Becky
Heather Hunter, Director of Children’s Choirs Connect with Heather
Heather is the Director of the children’s vocal and hand chime choirs at Wesley Church. She has directed children’s church choirs since 1985, and has enjoyed directing many Wesley children since 1997! Heather has lived her whole life in Pen Argyl, PA, and has a full-time job as a Registered Nurse. She and her husband Jim have two grown daughters who often can be seen lending a hand with this special ministry. She is looking forward to the day when her new grandson, Landon, will be part of her choirs.
Tracy Leszcynski, Director of Circle of Friends Connect with Tracy
Tracy is the Director of Wesley’s Circle of Friends Preschool. She is originally from Shrewsbury, New Jersey, but moved to the Lehigh Valley after meeting her husband while attending East Stroudsburg University. She joined Wesley Church in 1997 and became the Director of Wesley’s Circle of Friends in 1998. She currently resides in Nazareth with her husband and four children.
Keranie Whipple, Childcare Coordinator Connect with Keranie
Keranie has been the childcare coordinator for Wesley Church for over five years. She is a graduate from Kutztown University. During her studies at Kutztown, her childcare experience started at the university daycare and a couple other childcare facilities in the Lehigh Valley. Her passion and love for children and their safety is what keeps her dedicated to this ministry. Keranie’s responsibilities include staffing appropriate child care givers for Sunday morning worship services and for special approved events that the church holds during the week and holidays. Keranie also runs Celebrations children’s program during second service where children play, pray and sing. In addition, she is one of our Wedding Coordinators. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband, two children, family, friends, walking her dog Norman, gardening, shopping, and traveling.
Susan Matacavage, Minister of Children’s Education Connect with Susan
Susan graduated from Kutztown University in 1986 with a BS in Business Administration/Marketing. She returned to Kutztown and earned her certification as a Secondary Education/Social Studies teacher in 1996. She then taught at KidsPeace in Orefield for 11 years. Now she works part time at Wesley Church and enjoys spending more time at home with daughter Mikailyn. In addition to her paid position at Wesley Church, she is also a very active volunteer in the PTO at her daughter's school. She and her husband Michael joined Wesley Church in 1997 and were married here in 1998.
Brian Graybeal, Minister to Youth
Ardis Chapman, Newsletter Editor Connect with Ardis
Ardis gathers the news from the ministry teams and the ministry staff, to produce the weekly e-News and the newsletter, Wesley Monthly. She has been a member of Wesley Church since the early 70s. Her husband Clarke is a retired professor of religion at Moravian College. Their three daughters and their families live the New York City and New Jersey area. Ardis has a strong interest in caring for God’s creation and thus encourages recycling wherever she can and hopes to stop the use of Styrofoam cups from any and all church events! Another concern is for social justice and how political policies create economic inequality.