Pastor David Bucholtz earned his Master of Divinity degree from Ecumenical Theological Seminary of Detroit in 2007. He was installed as pastor at Bethel UCC in March 2010. He brings with him a truly ecumenical theology having been immersed in the traditions of the Lutheran, Presbyterian, American Baptist, and United Church of Christ churches as part of his faith journey. Pastor Bucholtz came to know many Bethel congregants during his 30 year career as a farm veterinarian in rural Washtenaw County. Among other interests, Pastor Bucholtz takes great pleasure in expressing his faith through the authoring of poetry and hymns.
Mary Sue, Music Director and Church Organist, has come to fulfill her dual roles at Bethel Church by an untraditional pathway. Mary Sue, a Detroit native, studied piano for 10 years then put aside formal training to study medical technology at the University of Michigan. She married her husband Joe in 1956, worked in the University Hospital system, and began raising their children while continuing to play music for her own enjoyment.
In 1968, Mary Sue was offered an opportunity by Anne Marie Menzel, the wife of Bethel’s current pastor of the time, to accompany the Children’s Choir. Mary Sue was soon asked to direct first the Children’s Choir and then all choirs. In addition to these duties, she also agreed to become the church organist in 1987.
Although she attended choir music workshops and took organ lessons to meet the demands of these positions, as Mary Sue states, “The education I received for the position of Music Director was the ‘on-the-job training’ opportunity given to me by the members of Bethel throughout the many years I have served. It was and still is a learning experience and I feel very blessed.”
For Bethel Church, the feeling of being blessed by Mary Sue’s music ministry is mutual.
Renee St. Charles has been the Office Manager for Bethel Church for the past 10 years. Her family is homegrown at Bethel Church and plays a vital role in our everyday church life. We are very fortunate to have Renee as the “voice and face” of Bethel Church in the office.