Grebel Interim Chaplain Hire: Shaping Faith and Spirituality

Friday, April 23, 2021

Jessica Reesor-Rempel sitting and smilingAs long-time Conrad Grebel University College chaplain, Ed Janzen, prepares to retire, Student Services is excited to announce that on August 1, 2021, Jessica Reesor-Rempel will begin a 17-month interim chaplaincy position.

The chaplain’s primary task is to nurture students in Christian faith, life, and values from a Mennonite perspective. This is balanced within the context of a university community where respect and appreciation for other religious traditions and affiliations is valued. Once a week, the chaplain leads a Chapel service where all College members are encouraged to gather and share in worship and song.

With a passion for young adult ministry, Jessica comes well-equipped for her interim role. In 2011, she graduated from Grebel and the University of Waterloo with a Peace and Conflict Studies degree, and afterwards she earned her Master of Divinity at the Toronto School of Theology—Emmanuel College. Since then, she has worked as a part-time pastor with Pastors in Exile (PiE), which she co-founded with Chris Brnjas. She also served as a chaplaincy intern at Parkwood Mennonite Home, and held various roles with Mennonite Church Eastern Canada (MCEC) and Mennonite Central Committee (MCC).

“As a student at Grebel, I learned that each person around the lunch table—students, staff, faculty—has a wealth of life experience that you cannot know by looking at them,” Jessica said. “As interim chaplain, I look forward to listening to these stories, in particular those experiences that have shaped their faith and spirituality into what it is today.”

Jessica is eager to work in a community that cares deeply about the needs of each other, as well as the local and global communities. She also looks forward to returning to a place that helped shape her into the person she is today.

“The world has changed a lot since I graduated 10 years ago,” Jessica said. “I am excited to hear about the particular joys and challenges facing Grebel students now, and to find creative ways to support the spiritual needs they have in 2021.”

“We are thrilled to hire Jessica Reesor-Rempel to be Grebel’s next chaplain!” said Mary Brubaker-Zehr, Director of Student Services. “We think she is perfect for this interim role and we are eager to work with her. She knows Grebel and the University well and she comes with extensive experience working with young adults. She has personally experienced Grebel as place of transformation and is eager to walk with young adults and all of us at Grebel, in the exploration and development of spiritual identity. Welcome Jessica!”

Written by Jace Jaeden Ellis

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