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Rev. Heather Morrison Yaden

The Reverend Morrison Yaden has the unique combination of experience, executive skills and warmth needed for this transition. Asked how she interacts with a diverse group of people, she replied, “Everyone is a beloved child of God. This is the core of my ministry.” She listens to everyone’s voice and ideas.

Heather grew up in Morristown, is a graduate of Kent Place School in Summit, and earned her BA in Psychology from Oberlin College. She currently lives in Stroudsburg, PA with her husband, who is retired from the Coast Guard. She plans to commute from PA (in her Prius), as she has done to her other interim positions of similar distances. Her daughter and son-in-law live in York, PA, and her son is a Junior at Emerson College in Boston.

Heather graduated from Princeton Theological Seminary in 1987 and has been involved in ministry for 30 years, working as an interim pastor for nearly 20 years. She began interim work at the request of the Presbytery because they recognized certain strengths in her ministry style that were well suited to interim work. She also seems to have her mother’s gift for remembering people’s names. She enjoys helping churches “discover who they are” during the interim period, maintaining what works, but as an interim can also “ask hard questions” during the Mission Study. Her father was a physician, which is why she values the “healing work of interim ministry”. She has followed a “BFP” (beloved former pastor) at several churches and will strive to “recognize Ed’s contributions and honor his legacy” while encouraging the congregation to maintain forward momentum. Heather learned the “value of authenticity” early on in her career, and certainly appeared authentic, and very at ease, telling us “I love being with people. Warmth matters to me.”

Heather tries to make the Mission Study “fun,” for example members sharing a meal seated at tables based on when they joined the church, to find or reestablish connections. Heather emphasized to our committee that the members know the church, for many a shared sense of mission and camaraderie binds us together. Heather’s experience will allow her to guide us through transition, mission study, and calling a new pastor.