Our Team

Senior Pastor, Rev. Michelle Torigian

Rev. Michelle L. Torigian is currently the senior pastor at St. Paul United Church of Christ in Belleville, IL and recently served as pastor of St. Paul United Church of Christ, Old Blue Rock Road in Cincinnati, Ohio. Prior to ministry, Rev. Torigian worked in fundraising and marketing for nonprofits as her previous career.  She graduated from Eden Theological Seminary in 2010, Fontbonne University in 1995 and is a graduate of Belleville West High School.  Rev. Torigian is the author of a number of articles on the Huffington Post Religion page including “Between Childless and Childfree,” a reflection for Mother’s Day.  Rev. Torigian has also written various pieces for the United Church of Christ including for the New Sacred blog, the worship service for General Synod in 2015, and the UCC Daily Devotional.  Her essay “Always the Pastor, Never the Bride” was published in the book There’s a Woman in the Pulpit and her essay "Worshiping in the Gaps: Developing Unique Worship Services" in the book Sacred Habits: Rise of the Creative Clergy. She has also written pieces for the 2017 book A Child Laughs.  Rev. Torigian regularly posts her musings on current events, justice issues, pop culture, and theology at www.michelletorigian.com.  

 

Craig Bielke

Director of Faith Formation and Care 

I live in Crestwood, MO with my wife, Katie Jo, our new son, Bryan Stuart and of course, our fur-baby, Booth a German Shepherd Dog. I am a native Texan, and enjoy spending my free time either bicycling, fishing, or kayaking. 

 

Rachel Budko
Director - Mother's Day Out

live in Columbia, IL with my husband Mike and our two children. I have a Bachelor’s Degree in  Management and have worked  as Director of Physcian Recruitment as well as formed a non profit organization to address domestic violence.

Dr .Bill Wade
Director of Music

Dr. Wade has been involved in church music since the age of 14.  He has served churches in TX, OK, KS and MO. He is a former Dean of the Saint Louis Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, and is a member of the Presbyterian Association of Musicians, the Handbell Association of America and the Hymn Society of North America and Canada.  Dr. Wade is a retired physician, has a Masters degree in organ performance from Webster University, and a Masters in Public Health from Saint Louis University.


Stephenie Bauza

Accountant

I am a member of St. Paul's UCC for over 15 years and sing in the choir, play bells, am President of the Women's Guild, a member of Stewardship and Nominating and Prayer Shawl coordinator. Now I am very excited about joining the St. Paul staff.

 

Tina Lake-Hopper

Office Coordinator

I am a blessed member of St. Paul UCC as well as staff. I am proud to serve on the St. Paul Tech Crew, Website Team, Worship Board and Council, and have been on the Discernment Committee, Interim Ministry and Pastoral Search Teams.  I enjoy making memories with my son, Carson, my nephew, Kamden, and my niece, Kennedy, every chance possible.   

John Posth
Non-Traditional Music Director 

I was raised in Red Bud, IL and participated in music throughout my childhood and high school experience. I attended Bradley University in Peoria, IL and studied music and religious studies  before graduating in May of 2019.  I have worked for Heart of Illinois Special Recreation Association as a summer music instructor for two years and worked for First Baptist Church of Peoria as a music intern for almost four years. I have also played with the Peoria Municipal Band as full time timpanist for two summers. 


Donna Young

Receptionist/Secretary

Jim and I have been members of St. Paul for over 24 years and I look forward to serving the church and all of you in my new position as Receptionist/Secretary.

Pat Kinney

Facility Manager

I am proud to be a part of the team at St. Paul. Besides the joy of working with a talented group of people in a Christ-like environment, I love spending time with family and being outdoors. 

I pray that I may contribute something to St. Paul and the community daily.