Staff

The bishop, Synod staff and deans provide pastoral care, support and resources for our rostered and lay leaders and more than 150 congregations and worshipping communities.

Synod Staff

Synod Staff

The Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod is served by a dedicated staff of clergy and lay professionals who support our congregations and leaders and facilitate a range of programs for the Synod.

Front row: Mrs. Yvonne Curtis, the Rev. Patricia Davenport, Bishop Claire Burkat, Mr. Martin Schwab.

Middle row: the Rev. Susan Lang, Mrs. Dionne Jackson, Mrs. Cynta Outterbridge, Mr. Bill Harp.

Back row: the Rev. Bradley Burke, Mr. Bob Fisher.

Not pictured: The Rev. Rachel Anderson.

Scroll down for contact information for Synod staff members. Also view the contact list for conference deans.

 

Office of the Bishop

The Rev. Claire Schenot Burkat was elected the fourth bishop of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) on May 6, 2006 and re-elected to a second six-year term in May, 2012. She serves as spiritual leader of the 95,000 members and nearly 160 congregations of the synod. The bishop oversees and administers the work of our Synod, provides pastoral care and leadership to the Synod, our congregations, and professional leaders: pastors, associates in ministry, deaconesses and diaconal ministers.

The Rev. Claire Schenot Burkat

Bishop

The Rev. Claire Schenot Burkat was elected to a second six-year term as the fourth bishop of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod (SEPA) of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) in May, 2012.  She serves as spiritual leader for about 95,000 members and nearly 160 ELCA congregations in the City of Philadelphia and Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties.

During her tenure Bishop Burkat has streamlined the Synod staff and realigned staff roles with the key missional priorities of the Synod: connecting and resourcing congregations, evangelical outreach in the five county region, and empowering lay and clergy leaders.  She has led the Synod through an extensive strategic planning process focusing on new priorities for Lutheran witness in the 21st century.


  • Phone: 267.323.3747
  • Email: bishop@sepa.org
  • :

Yvonne Curtis

Director of Operations and Executive Assistant to the Bishop

  • Phone: 267.323.3747
  • Email: ycurtis@sepa.org

Business Office

The Business Office oversees the fiscal operations of the synod and resource development, and provides programs to assist congregation treasurers and pastors manage congreation finances.

The Rev. Rachel Anderson

Campaign Coordinator, Forward Together in Faith Campaign

  • Phone:: 267.323.3745
  • Email:: campaign@sepa.org

Martin Schwab

Senior Accountant

  • Phone: 267.323.3754
  • Email: mschwab@sepa.org

Evangelical Outreach

Evangelical Outreach develops, nurtures and supports new mission congregations, redevelopment and transformational leadership programs, and the evangelism and faith formation teams.

Dionne Jackson

Coordinator for Evangelical Outreach and Youth, Young Adult and Spiritual Formation

Mrs. Jackson assists Pastor Davenport and Evangelical Outreach teams and supports youth and young adult programs with a focus on events. Shecomes to us with a background in church administration and banking. A wife and mother, she is active in her church’s young adult and women’s ministry. Committed to the spiritual formation of those she engages, she also brings strong technical experience. She is a graduate of Widener University.

  • Phone: 267.323.3752
  • Email: djackson@sepa.org

The Rev. Patricia Davenport

Director for Evangelical Mission

Pastor Pat Davenport works with new mission congregations as the deployed Director for Evangelical Mission for our synod, working with new church plants as well as redevelopment and congregational revitalization, evangelism, and transformational ministry.

  • Phone: 267.323.3746
  • Email: pdavenport@sepa.org

Mission Interpretation & Communications

Mission Interpretation and Communications tells the story of the work we are doing together in congregations, as a synod, and through the ELCA and global Lutheran agencies, and equips congregations and leaders to make that story relevant in their context. We facilitate networks for congregational editors, website designers and social media teams as well as council officers.

Robert Fisher

Assistant to the Bishop for Mission Interpretation and Communications

Bob manages mission interpretation and communications, including our Synod’s website, email newsletter, videos, and media relations. He assists congregations with crisis communications and loves to equip congregations to improve their communications. Contact Bob with stories of your congregation’s newsworthy activities or for consultation with worship media, emerging worship, outreach, and crisis communications issues. He can also provide workshops on web communications, understanding our digital culture, social media, and more.

Bob also facilitates our Synod’s network for congregational communicators (http://www.facebook.com/groups/sepacomm).

 

  • Phone: 267.323.3743 or 267.702.4262
  • Email: rfisher@sepa.org
  • Facebook: facebook.com/rwfisher
  • Skype: adia4a
  • Twitter: @adiaphora

Cynta Outterbridge

Communications Assistant and Database Manager

Mrs. Outterbridge handles day-to-day updates to the Synod website, ministrylink.org, and compiles the bi-weekly SEPANews e-mail updates. She also manages the Synod databases of rostered leaders, congregations, congregational contacts and other constituents and is the statistician for the Synod. Contact her with changes to your contact information. She is assistant to Mr. Fisher and provides computer support for Synod staff. She also provides support for Global Vision and Synod Events, serving as registrar for the Assembly, Convocation and other major events, and is assistant to Mrs. Carlson.

  • Phone: 267.323.3742
  • Email: coutterbridge@sepa.org

Synod Events

Synod Events is responsible for the planning, logistics and execution of our major synod events, including Assembly and Bishop’s Convocation.

The Rev. Susan Lang

Events Planner

Pastor Lang handles planning and logistics for major Synod events, including the Assembly and Convocation.

  • Phone: 267.323.3756
  • Email: slang@sepa.org

Cynta Outterbridge

Communications Assistant and Database Manager

Mrs. Outterbridge handles day-to-day updates to the Synod website, ministrylink.org, and compiles the bi-weekly SEPANews e-mail updates. She also manages the Synod databases of rostered leaders, congregations, congregational contacts and other constituents and is the statistician for the Synod. Contact her with changes to your contact information. She is assistant to Mr. Fisher and provides computer support for Synod staff. She also provides support for Global Vision and Synod Events, serving as registrar for the Assembly, Convocation and other major events, and is assistant to Mrs. Carlson.

  • Phone: 267.323.3742
  • Email: coutterbridge@sepa.org

Vocations & Leadership

Vocations and Leadership works to identify, raise up, and support leaders for the Church through the candidacy and mobility functions and interim ministry.

Deacon Allison Wilcox

Director of Candidacy

  • Phone:: 484.883.1283
  • Email:: awilcox@sepa.org

The Rev. Marcia Bell

Director for Mobility

  • Email: marciagbell@comcast.net

Bill Harp

Coordinator for Vocations and Leadership

Bill provides administrative support to SEPA’s Vocations and Leadership initiatives, including Candidacy, Mobility, Interim Ministry, Pulpit Supply and Leadership Development.

  • Phone: 267.323.3744
  • Email: bharp@sepa.org

Fred Renigar

Chair of Candidacy Committee

  • Email: frenigar@sepa.org

Faith Formation and Discipleship

Faith Formation and Discipleship focuses on equipping congregations to shape and raise up faithful, committed Christians of all ages as leaders in the church for a bold, new future. Beginning with teenagers and young adults, Faith Formation is a lifelong journey that extends through every age and stage of life.”

The Rev. Bradley Burke

Assistant to the Bishop for Youth, Young Adult and Spiritual Formation

Pastor Burke works with the Synod’s youth ministry programs and volunteers, and will work to expand ministries with young adults. He will also lead efforts to enhance spiritual formation across the Synod.

Pastor Burke, a native of Northeastern Pennsylvania, has served congregations in Delaware and Chester Counties, assisted congregations in building and growing effective confirmation and youth ministries and has helped to plan, coordinate or lead events such as Helping Hands Day, the SEPA Ingathering, and the Synod’s Young Adult Mission Trip to Cherokee, NC. He has also accompanied Young Adults from our Synod to serve at the ELCA Youth Gathering in Detroit, and has a passion for raising up young people as leaders and innovators in the church.

Before joining Lutheran Charities he served at St. Michael Lutheran Church in Unionville and St. Timothy’s Lutheran Church in Aston. He is a graduate of the University of Scranton and the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, and currently lives in Downingtown with his wife Kim and four-year old son Liam.

  • Phone: 267.323.3762
  • Email: bburke@sepa.org
  • :

Dionne Jackson

Coordinator for Evangelical Outreach and Youth, Young Adult and Spiritual Formation

Mrs. Jackson assists Pastor Davenport and Evangelical Outreach teams and supports youth and young adult programs with a focus on events. Shecomes to us with a background in church administration and banking. A wife and mother, she is active in her church’s young adult and women’s ministry. Committed to the spiritual formation of those she engages, she also brings strong technical experience. She is a graduate of Widener University.

  • Phone: 267.323.3752
  • Email: djackson@sepa.org