Cathy Applewhite grew up outside New Haven, Connecticut where her father was a professor of Old Testament at Yale Divinity School. She received her B. A. from Ohio Wesleyan University with a major in Religion and minor in Sociology. She moved to Atlanta, Georgia to attend Candler School of Theology, Emory University and received a Master of Divinity degree. Cathy took additional courses at Columbia Theological Seminary to fulfill her Presbyterian requirements and completed a year of supervised ministry at Fondren Presbyterian Church in Jackson, Mississippi. Cathy also earned a Master’s in Christian Education at Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond, Virginia. She has worked for the Presbyterian Church (USA) as a Church Educator in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Cathy’s experiences helped her discover the ministry of pastoral care to individuals and families in crisis. She became a resident chaplain at Lehigh Valley Hospital in Allentown, Pennsylvania where she met her husband, Mark. The chaplaincy program gave her the skills necessary to address the spiritual needs of persons in all facets of life. As a counselor, she worked with children and adults who had physical, developmental, and mental disabilities. She provided support and resources for families to help alleviate obstacles toward their well-being. Cathy has worked as a consultant for the PRC since May 2014. She is also a volunteer chaplain at Gurwin Nursing Home and a Spiritual Care Companion at MaryHaven Center of Hope.
Charlaine Apsel is the Executive Director of the Parish Resource Center located in Rocky Point and Commack and, in that capacity, supports faith communities in their ministry and mission all across the New York City area. She has worked for or volunteered at not-for-profit organizations beginning at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory as Director of Finance and Marketing over thirty years ago. Charlaine handles the print and internet marketing for the PRC and is a workshop leader on church governance, stewardship, websites, and finances. She was a QuickBooks trainer for CompUSA and continues as a QuickBooks advisor to church treasurers. Charlaine has served on the Conference Minister Search Committee for the New York Conference of the UCC and is currently on their Stewardship Committee. In her own church she is a choir member, church treasurer, and on the Executive Council.
Margaret Berglund is the Development Director at the PRC. She started out as a teacher and spent several years freelancing doing floral arranging using silk and natural materials. When she married a Methodist pastor who liked to visually as well as verbally and musically “share the word”, Margaret dusted off those former skills and began working with him and his congregations to develop sanctuary/altar designs that weren’t just decorative, but more deeply reflective of the season or day’s readings. She has been doing it now for over 15 years. Along with altar/sanctuary design, Margaret has served as an example for her husband’s Church Office Administrators, for creating bulletin covers and incorporating “thoughts for the day” that also image/prompt worshipers to focus in on the service’s message. Email Me
Debbie Kolacki is a Certified Christian Educator and Certified Lay Servant in the United Methodist Church. Her blogs include FaithGeeks and Practical Resources for Churches. She is the senior consultant for the PRC of Rocky Point where she works with people in all areas of ministry and leads webinars, workshops, and retreats. She loves doing research of all kinds for church folks. The PRC, where all her co-workers and many of the visitors are faith geeks, is the perfect environment for Debbie when she is not home with her family and cat (Bob) writing, reading, and doing faith geek things.
]Karen Smith, a long-time resident of Rocky Point, has degrees in both Early Childhood Education and Secretarial Science from Suffolk County Community College. Having been a preschool teacher for over 22 years, she has held positions in all aspects of preschool education. She has worked at SeaPort Preschool in Port Jefferson for 17 years, Our Redeemer Lutheran School in Aquebogue for 11 years, and at Trinity Lutheran Preschool in Rocky Point for two years. Karen has been a member of Setauket Methodist Church in Setauket, where she taught Sunday school for several years, started a fifth and sixth grade youth group, and for a short time was editor of the church newsletter. In 1995 she returned to her Lutheran roots becoming a member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Rocky Point. Currently, she has been teaching fourth grade Sunday school. Karen’s other activities have included being a camp counselor at Camp Quinipet on Shelter Island, leading various summer programs for elementary and preschool groups , serving as a member of the Altar Guild at Trinity, and is co-leader of the Stamp ‘n Pray Card Ministry at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church. She has taught Vacation Bible School and assisted with Summer Sunday School. Karen was also a Girl Scout Leader for 12 years. Email Me