Company of New Pastors, a program of the Office of Theology and Worship, has announced a new leadership team for the highly successful transition into ministry program. Four regional mentors, the Rev. Dave Rohrer, the Rev. Jim Kitchens, the Rev. Kristin Frederich, and the Rev. Jeff Ugoretz, will work with faculty mentors and pastor mentors as they form and lead individual groups. Company of New Pastors (CNP) administrative work will be coordinated by Karen Russell, program associate in the Office of Theology and Worship.
Rohrer serves as teaching pastor at University Presbyterian Church, Seattle. He previously served as pastor of worship, pastor of discipleship, and pastor of adult ministries at University Presbyterian. He has mentored and ministered to candidates and interns during his tenure at University and recently published The Sacred Wilderness of Pastoral Ministry: Preparing a People for the Presence of the Lord (InterVarsity Press, 2012). Rohrer also serves as pastor mentor to a regional CNP group.
Kitchens is interim pastor at Calvary Presbyterian Church in San Francisco. A graduate of Pacific School of Religion, Kitchens has been involved with CNP since its inception. He is the author of The Postmodern Parish, published by the Alban Institute.
Frederich is pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Cambria, Wisconsin. Prior to that, she served as dean of student formation at Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Frederich and her husband, Steve, have four grown children. She serves as pastor mentor to a regional CNP group.
Ugoretz serves as pastor of Christ Presbyterian Church in Hamilton Township, New Jersey. A graduate of Princeton Theological Seminary, he has served as moderator of the Presbytery of New Brunswick and chaplain for the Rotary Club of Hamilton Township and is a member of the Pastoral Care and Education Committee of the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital–Hamilton. Ugoretz is a graduate of CNP’s predecessor program, Excellence from the Start.
The Rev. Karen Russell, a graduate of Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary (M.Div. ’08, Th.M. ’10), has served in the Office of Theology and Worship since 2008.
CNP uses the disciplines of Company of Pastors—daily reading of Scripture, daily prayer, engagement with the confessions, and regular theological reflection—to provide new pastoral leaders with habits of spiritual formation and nurture as they make the transition from seminary into full-time ministry. Several studies have confirmed that 35-40% of pastors leave ministry within the first five years. Of the nearly 400 graduates of CNP and its predecessor program Excellence From the Start, less than 1 percent have left full-time ministry after completion of the program.