Thursday, Feb. 7, 2008

Momberg new rector at All Saints Episcopal

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Bill Ryan⁄The Gazette
Elias Duthinh, 11, and his father, Dat, of Frederick, look at an ice sculpture on Market Street during the ‘‘Fire in Ice” First Saturday Gallery Walk, in downtown Frederick Saturday. The event featured displays of more than 25 illuminated ice sculptures throughout downtown, and ice-carving demonstrations outside Brewer’s Alley.
Not many compare downtown Frederick to Lawrence, Kan., but that is exactly how Tom Momberg sees things in his first two weeks in the city.

‘‘I think they both have an eclectic and funky downtown with an arts scene,” Momberg said. ‘‘I look at Frederick and I think of Lawrence.”

After years of serving communities in Kansas, Missouri and other locales, Momberg, 59 will be spending a lot more time learning about the City of Frederick. He was recently named the 16th rector in the 222-year history of All Saints Episcopal Church on West Church Street.

Nancy Hennessey, co-chairman of the church’s search committee, said the group recruited Momberg from nearly 100 candidates in a process that began in November 2006.

Hennessey and three others went to Holy Communion Episcopal Church in Memphis, Tenn., to visit Momberg where he served as associate rector.

Momberg said both he and his leaders at the Tennessee church were impressed with the Frederick delegation.

‘‘My rector [the Rev. Mark Rutenbar] said to me ‘if these four people are representatives of the church at large, you are in good shape because these are fine people,’” Momberg said.

Momberg felt the same and accepted the invitation to lead the Frederick church after spending six years at the Memphis church where he once attended services as a teenager.

Born in Ohio before moving to Tennessee, Momberg attended Brown University in Rhode Island and then earned his Master of Divinity degree at General Theological Society in New York in 1986. He became an ordained priest in the Diocese of Chicago and served there as well as at churches in Pennsylvania and in Kansas. Momberg also completed a one-year residency in clinical pastoral education, serving as a chaplain for a retirement community in Missouri.

Momberg’s travels now bring him to Frederick, where he met members of his congregation on Sunday during a welcoming event. He began preaching at the church this week and will have a formal installation service on March 2.

‘‘The congregation at large has been working very hard to welcome me and help me with the transition,” Momberg said. ‘‘... It feels good and right. I am ready to be with them as their pastor and them as my congregation. I am where I am supposed to be.”

Hennessey couldn’t agree more.

‘‘He possesses the skills and the gifts we were looking for to lead us into the future together,” she said. ‘‘... He has a demeanor that is very approachable and a true spiritual depth that will serve him well as our spiritual leader and in the community.”

Momberg is married to the Rev. Eyleen Farmer, an associate rector at a church in Tennessee. He has a son, John, 25, who lives in Lawrence and a daughter, Hannah, 19, who attends the University of Dayton in Ohio.

‘‘It’s fun to be back in a downtown that is really vibrant and has a wealth of arts and entertainment,” he said. ‘‘I’m looking forward to experiencing more of that.”

Momberg’s installation service will take place at 4 p.m., March 2, at All Saints Episcopal Church. For more information, call 301-663-5625.

Students earncollege honors

*Delaware Valley College has named Erin Spurrier of Frederick to its fall 2007 dean’s list.

Spurrier, a freshman studying secondary education with a specialization in agriculture, was among 450 students named to the list at the college in Doylestown, Pa.

To earn the honor as a freshman, Spurrier earned a grade-point average of 3.3 or higher.

*Eleven students from Frederick have been named to the dean’s list at McDaniel College in Westminster.

Students earning highest honors with a grade-point average of 3.9 or higher were: Cody Crutchley, Laura Davis, Katherine Eaton, Juliann Guiffre, Kristin O’Toole, Rachel Smith, and Timothy Snyder.

High honors, for grade-point averages between 3.89 and 3.7, were awarded to Casey Crough and Emily Hajjar, and honors status, for grade-point averages of 3.69 to 3.5, was awarded to Caitlin Concannon and Christina Walker.

*Grove City College in Pennsylvania has announced that Jess VanDervort of Frederick is a member of the fall 2007 dean’s list with a grade-point average of 3.59 to 3.4.

VanDervort, a music education major, is a 2004 graduate of Gov. Thomas Johnson High School.

She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Cole VanDervort of Frederick.

Do you have an item for City Beat? Contact reporter Keith L. Martin at 301-846-2134, e-mail or fax news to 301-846-2124.