Becky Ullom Called as Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry

Church of the Brethren Newsline
Aug. 4, 2009

Becky Ullom has been called to serve as the Church of the Brethren’s director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry, effective Aug. 31. She currently is director of Identity and Relations, with responsibility for the denominational website and a range of other communication tasks.

“Ullom brings a passion for young people, organizational acumen, visionary leadership, a history of ministering with Brethren youth, and strong skills in group process,” said an announcement of the appointment.

“As a native of young adult culture and an enthusiastic ambassador for vital youth and young adult ministries, Becky will lead us collaboratively and competently into a new and dynamic future with young people,” said Jonathan Shively, executive director for Congregational Life Ministries.

In previous work for the church, Ullom was coordinator of National Young Adult Conference from June 2003-July 2004 and one of the coordinators of National Youth Conference (NYC) from June 2001-July 2002. She has been a young adult steward with the World Council of Churches, and a Brethren delegate to the National Council of Churches. She also has taught high school English.

She received her bachelor of arts degree from McPherson (Kan.) College with majors in English and Spanish and a minor in English as a Second Language.

The Church of the Brethren Newsline is produced by Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford, director of news services for the Church of the Brethren. Newsline stories may be reprinted if Newsline is cited as the source. Contact  to receive Newsline by e-mail or to submit news to the editor. For more Church of the Brethren news and features, subscribe to “Messenger” magazine; call 800-323-8039 ext. 247.

Brethren in the News

“Extreme Makeover volunteers work throughout the night,” Dayton (Ohio) Daily News (Aug. 2, 2009). Church of the Brethren member Gay Mercer is serving as the architect for a home makeover in Beavercreek, Ohio, according to a report from Mack Memorial Church of the Brethren in Dayton. The television show “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” is constructing the home for the Terpenning family. For an online article on the project go to
; photo albums are available at  and  

Obituary: Brigitte H. Olmstead, Free Lance-Star, Fredericksburg, Va. (Aug. 2, 2009). Brigitte H. Olmstead, 67, of Fredericksburg, Va., died on July 31 at her residence with her husband at her side. She was born Dec. 28, 1941, in Berlin, Germany. She leaves behind her husband of 42 years, Larry Olmstead. A celebration of life service will be held Aug. 5 at Hollywood Church of the Brethren in Fredericksburg, Va.

Obituary: Hollie J. McCutcheon, News Leader, Staunton, Va. (July 31, 2009). Hollie J. McCutcheon passed away at Salem (Va.) Hospital on July 29. He was retired from working for McQuay in Verona, Va. He is survived by his wife, Jo Ann C. McCutcheon. A memorial service will be held Aug. 3 at White Hill Church of the Brethren in Stuarts Draft, Va.

“Called to serve,” Waterloo Cedar Falls (Iowa) Courier (July 30, 2009). “The desire to do full-time ministry came later in life. Or perhaps, mused the Rev. David Whitten, it took him several decades to notice it,” reports an article on the new ministry by David Whitten and his wife, Judith, at South Waterloo Church of the Brethren in Iowa. “It was really pretty much a strong sense of calling,” Whitten said. Originally from Virginia, he has served two stints as a mission worker in Africa and put in 10 years as a pastor.

“Church offers food relief program,” Carroll County (Ind.) Comet (July 29, 2009). Living Faith Church of the Brethren in Flora, Ind., is helping people reduce food costs through the nonprofit organization, Angel Food Ministries. The church started offering the program to help people in these tough economic times. The purpose of the national ministry is to provide quality, nutritious food at significant discounts.

 “Wedding procession at ELCA church a YouTube sensation,” The Lutheran (July 24, 2009). Church of the Brethren minister Jeannine Leonard presided over a wedding that has become a YouTube sensation. The wedding was held at Christ Lutheran Church in St. Paul, Minn. The couple have become instant celebrities thanks to a video of their unconventional dance down the aisle, which they posted on YouTube in order to share it with family and friends. “The Lutheran” magazine of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) reported that the wedding of Jill Peterson and Kevin Heinz took place on June 20, and by July 24 there were more than 1.5 million views of the five-minute aisle dance. The wedding party was scheduled to do an encore of the dance for the Today Show on July 25.
; view the video at

Obituary: Odell B. Reynolds, News Leader, Staunton, Va. (July 20, 2009). Odell Byers Reynolds, 83, of Buena Vista, died on July 18 at her home in Stuarts Draft, Va. She was a life long member of Oronoco Church of the Brethren in Vesuvius, Va. She was retired from Kenney’s in Buena Vista. She was preceded in death by her first husband, H. Warren Byers, and her second husband Harry Reynolds.

“From compost to gardens for new vegetables,” Reporter News, North Penn, Pa. (July 19, 2009). Peter Becker Community, a Church of the Brethren retirement community in Franconia, Pa., is reaping tasty new rewards for recycling. Its dining service, Cura Hospitality, has begun on-site composting, with the final result to be used for the residents’ vegetable gardens. “So far it’s been very successful,” said Bill Richman, the Cura general manager.

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