ST. PETER'S UMC

MEET OUR STAFF


Mark grew up in Lakeland, Florida, where he was involved with his church choirs and youth groups where he not only came to know Christ but received a call to ordained ministry. In pursuit of this call, he received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Florida Southern College in 1994 and Master of Divinity degree from Duke University in 1997, and is currently a Beeson Scholar working on his Doctor of Ministry through Asbury Theological Seminary. He spent three summers 1991-1993 working as a Team Member at the United Methodist youth camp in Leesburg (Now Warren W. Willis Camp). These experiences gave him the opportunity to learn how to play guitar but also exposed him to a variety of preaching styles which he employs in his own preaching.

He was commissioned as a minister in 1997 and entered his Provisional Membership to the Florida Conference serving as Associate at Trinity UMC in Tallahassee. He was ordained an Elder in Full Connection in 2002. He served Miami Lakes UMC for 6 years, First UMC Ft. Lauderdale for 9 years and has served as the senior pastor at St. Peter's since the summer of 2015. He and his wife Tiffany have two sons.

The southern accent you hear on Sunday mornings belongs to Rachel Lever. She was born in South Carolina, but her family moved to Jacksonville, Florida as she was beginning the 9th grade. She returned to South Carolina to pursue a bachelors degree at Columbia College. It was during the summer, following her junior year, that she felt a call to full time ministry. She later attended Scarritt College, located in "Methodist Mecca" (better known as Nashville, Tennessee), where she received a masters degree.

Rachel has served churches in South Carolina and the following churches in Florida: Pasadena Community Church, St. Petersburg; Lake Magdalene, Tampa; and Trinity, Palm Beach Gardens. Rachel has enjoyed working with volunteers to provide quality programs and experiences where folks can grow in their relationship with Jesus Christ. During her early ministry, her focus was on children and youth. Over the last few years, she has shifted to adult and pastoral ministry. Ordination in 1997 has opened new and exciting opportunities for her. She joined the St. Peter's staff in January 2003, and is serving as Assistant to the Pastor.

Rachel enjoys spending time with family and friends; visiting new places (especially in the western United States) and dancing. 

Debbie came to St. Peter's in January 2005 as a financial secretary. Originally from New York, (incase you could not tell by her accent) Debbie moved down with her family back in 1986. She became a resident here in Wellington in 1987. Debbie has two sons that she adores, Matthew and Daniel. Before coming to St. Peter's she spent 8 years working for a sanitation company as the office manager.

Debbie's passion is and always has been dogs, dogs, dogs. She absolutely loves animals and will go out of her way to rescue a lost dog. She also loves taking care of the "church cats", Missy and Grace and making sure they are fed each and every day. Debbie feels blessed to have been selected to work here at St. Peter's. 

Miss Lori started at CEC in 2008. She has served as a substitute, Spanish Enrichment Teacher, Administrative Assistant, and Assistant Director. Lori Graduated from Florida State University with a degree in Elementary Education and taught Kindergarten through third grade in Palm Beach County.

She also holds a Florida Director's Credential. Lori is a member and grew up attending St. Peter's United Methodist Church since the age of 4.

She resides in Wellington with her husband Walt and their 2 children Regan & Giles.

Samantha Scott is a North Carolina native. She is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington where she met her husband, Brad. They were relocated to South Florida for the second time in October of 2012. Immediately, they began searching for a church in Wellington for their family. St. Peter’s offered them the warm welcome and youth program that they were looking for.

Samantha has always been involved in church since she was a small child. She was teaching VBS by 17 years old, singing in the adult choir and being involved in her youth group. She volunteered in many areas at her previous church, such as, leading the 4th-5th grade fellowship program, holding positions on VBS leadership teams, organizing a shepherding program and developing a Wednesday night program for children’s ministry.

Since joining the St. Peter’s church family, Samantha has continued her involvement by being the director of VBS and being an adult volunteer in the youth program. She has also been a teacher in our Child Enrichment Center.

Samantha has two daughters that keep her busy but she still finds time to read, swim, run and fellowship with friends. However, being a part of the church is where she most feels at home.

Shelly Albright is one of those rare Florida natives. She was born and raised in Tampa. After graduating from the University of Florida, where she met her husband David, she settled in south Florida. Shelly and David think Wellington is the perfect place to raise their children. As you can imagine life can be crazy for the mother of four boys. 

St. Peter's UMC has been an integral part of life in the Albright household. The family has been members for many years and the youngest two boys were baptized by Rev. Richter. Shelly began volunteering at church as soon as she became a member and hasn't stopped. Her strong desire to contribute more at church combined with the support of her family and friends lead her to jump at the chance to take on the roll of Director of Children's Ministries when the opportunity presented itself. 

Shelly remains very involved in the community. Her husband quite regularly referred to her as a professional volunteer before she was hired into her current job. She strongly believes that it is every person's responsibility to make the world a better place. One of Shelly's favorite movie quotes comes from the Power of One "What if the power of one becomes the power of many and the power of many becomes the power of one?" 

In her spare time Shelly enjoys gardening, family activities and entertaining at her home whenever she has the chance. She knows that the Lord put us here to be an influence and to in a gentle way guide people in the right direction. With God's love Christians can do a lot with very little. As the Director of Children's Ministries it is Shelly's goal to work alongside parents and volunteers to teach the children to become disciples of Christ in order to build a better world. 

As a child of seven, Copeland's fascination with music began while watching a pianist on TV. He blocked out everything that was going on except that pianist. He remembers thinking that "if someone could only show me, I could learn to do that." Thus began his education with the piano. This also set in motion his roots in gospel, which he achieved from playing in church for thirteen years. This would eventually tie together with classical training to create his unique style as a jazz innovator. His ultimate influence would become Beethoven, who used the piano as an instrument to imitate the complete orchestra. Although Copeland's formal education became complete with a degree from Florida Atlantic University, he continually strives to learn and acquire musical knowledge.

The keyboard is his kingdom. He can appear as a jazz pianist, but he can send his instrument into the pop, rock or classical ends of the spectrum.

What makes him outstanding is that he is comfortable in all phases. When Copeland plays, watch his fingers! They dance across the keyboard with a fast, strong pace, then they back off in a soft, graceful and almost quite serenade that fills the soul with beautiful music.

A standing ovation was the response to Copeland's TV debut on the "Tonight Show." With appearances following on "Good Morning, America," and his own PBS special. In addition to three appearances on ABC's "B.L. Stryker," was his subsequent induction into The International Who's Who in Music and The Las Vegas Entertainers Hall Of Fame in 2014.

Ann was born in Nashville, and regularly rode in the back of her parents car on the weekends listening to The Grand Old Opry, but moved to Tampa when she was 10 so she considers herself a Floridian. Ann is a devout Florida State Seminole and will regularly wear the Garnet and Gold and do the Tomahawk Chop.

Ann was born and raised a Methodist, but chose to remain a Methodist after doing a study on the Social Principles of the United Methodist Church.

During High School she was active in Young Life and also performed in "The Spirit of '76", which toured the eastern United States, including a performance at the Liberty Bell. She majored in Music Education at Florida State University and has sung in church choirs since 3rd grade, has directed children's choirs, adult ensembles and adult choirs. She has also directed numerous Cantantas, children's programs, and other dramatic endeavors.

Ann and her husband Bill have 3 children, Brandy, Beau and Brett. They also have a houseload of animals. They have always been active in scouts, coaching sports, and children's and youth activities.

Jennifer Morgan is a Michigan native who graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre Performance from Wayne State University in Michigan. She has spent nineteen years enthusiastically traveling the country working in the auto show industry. For the first six years Jennifer held positions as a Concept Narrator, Product Specialist, Product Presenter, and Team Leader for the Pontiac/GMC Auto Show Accounts and for the last thirteen years she has worked as an Exhibit Manager and Brand Specialist for ShowMax Marketing as a member of the Subaru of America Brand Specialist Events Team. In addition to her busy travel schedule throughout the U.S. and Canada she has used her theatrical background performing as a singer/dancer, choreographer, musical theatre teacher and emcee. If all that wasn’t enough she is also a certified Wedding Planner.

In 2015 Jennifer and her husband made the big move down to Florida having experienced enough snow to last a lifetime. She never takes for granted what a blessing it is to live in such a beautiful place. Jennifer first attended St. Peter’s a year ago and immediately felt at home. She jumped into volunteering in as many ways as possible and has loved being a part of the St. Peter’s church community. 

Jennifer is the proud owner of a very spoiled Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and is a big supporter of the Therapy Dogs International Organization. Her hobbies include taking a Pure Barre workout class, volunteering as a Miss America Organization coach and judge and playing with her pup.

Jennifer was blessed to grow up watching her Mom work with the children’s ministry and youth programs in her church and her Father was a highly respected music educator actively involved in their church as well so she is excited and thankful for the opportunity to follow in her parents foot steps serving the LORD.