Now there are a variety of gifts,
but the same Spirit.
— 1 Corinthians 12:4
The Rev. Lynne M. Dolan, Senior Minister
The Reverend Lynne M. Dolan attended Wesley Theological Seminary where she graduated in 1993 Summa Cum Laude with a Master of Divinity degree. In seminary she served as a student minister for four years at People’s Congregational Church, UCC in Washington, DC where she was ordained in 1994. In addition, Lynne received a fellowship from the Fund for Theological Education where she spent a year studying urban ministry and serving a small congregation in St. Paul, Minnesota. After completing her unit of Clinical Pastoral Education at Washington Hospital Center, she continued to serve as an on-call chaplain for three years.
Rev. Dolan has previously served as Associate Minister in three churches in Springfield and Wilbraham, Massachusetts and Glastonbury, Connecticut. She has a passion for helping the church discern its mission and empowering parishioners to name and claim their gifts for ministry. She loves worship and brings her creative energy to this endeavor. Lynne brings a love for youth ministry and a fervent desire to connect the urban and suburban churches in mutual ministry. Lynne has served in many capacities beyond the local church. She has been an active member of several Committees on Ministry, an on-call chaplain at Baystate Medical Center, a member of the board of directors for the Springfield chapter of Habitat for Humanity, and currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors for Colony Homes in Worcester, MA. She has served on the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Conference of the United Church of Christ since 2016.
Lynne grew up in North Andover, MA and received her undergraduate degree from Dickinson College, Carlisle, PA in 1986. Soon after graduation she answered the call to ministry. She is the single mom of two amazingly, wonderful young adult children, Audrey and Bruce. Lynne loves to sing, knit, explore the trails of Central Massachusetts and spend time with her dog Brash. Lynne’s second great love is the Boston Red Sox!
The Rev. Dr. James M. Matarazzo, Jr, Interim Minister
Prior to joining the staff as Interim Minister in July 2019, Jim served as Interim Associate Minister at First Congregational Church in Guilford, Connecticut, for one year. Before that, he was a Lecturer in Theology at Ripon College Cuddesdon, Oxford, England, the largest seminary in the Church of England. He was also a member of the Faculty of Theology and Religion at the University of Oxford. He completed his DPhil (Oxford’s version of a PhD) in Theology at Oxford in 2017. He will teach part-time in the Theology Department at Boston College during his ministry here in Shrewsbury.
Jim has worked in the international development/humanitarian relief field for the past 15 years, with most of his work dealing with HIV initiatives in least developed countries, especially sub-Saharan Africa. Prior to his time at Oxford, he was based in London where he worked for several church-related agencies, including Norwegian Church Aid and Christian Aid. He has worked as a consultant for the World Council of Churches, Lutheran World Federation, various United Nations agencies and other organizations. He is currently a consultant with GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit), the German Government’s development agency, and recently concluded work on a project in Zambia on the issue of the intersect between religiosity and gender-based violence.
A native of Boston, Jim was ordained a minister in the United Church of Christ in 2005. He holds additional clergy standing in the Lutheran Church in Great Britain, the Church of England, and the Church of Scotland. He lived in the UK for over 11 years until his return to the States in 2018. An avid traveler, Jim has traveled to over 91 countries and territories. His other hobbies include music (he is a big fan of the Boston band “Guster”), reading, hiking, and wall-climbing
Curtis Smith, Director of Music
Curtis Smith began studying piano at a young age. His interest in the pipe organ began as an undergraduate piano major at Stetson University in DeLand, Florida. Since then he has played many pipe organs of varying sizes and shapes, each with their own sound and personality. Curtis is enjoying getting to know the Casavant organ at First Congregational Church of Shrewsbury with its wonderfully prominent bass and sonorous overtones.
Curtis serves on the program committee for the Worcester chapter of the American Guild of Organists and teaches piano at Pakachoag Music School of Greater Worcester. When he’s not playing the organ, piano or harpsichord, Curtis enjoys canoeing, sailing and cycling.
Curtis received his Master’s of Music degree in piano performance from West Chester University of Pennsylvania. He received his vocal training at the Pädagogische Hochschule in Freiburg, Germany and at the International Kodály Institute in Kecskemét, Hungary. As a certified teacher of the Alexander Technique, Curtis also enjoys teaching people about sensory motor integration.
Leo Biocchi, Director of Christian Education & Communications Assistant
Leo Biocchi holds a Bachelors degree in Sociology and devotes his time and talents to the advocacy of children. A trained ABA Therapist, he has worked with multiple private treatment providers as well as public schools within the Greater-Worcester area and MetroWest Boston area to treat children from infancy through adolescence suffering from Autism,
PTSD and other health issues. He has assisted in functional behavioral assessments to diagnosis these conditions and is trained in Early Intervention (EI) to spot early signs of ASD in babies. Leo has led social groups, ADL skills training and music therapy groups for children and youth.
Leo grew up in the United Church of Christ and spent most of his childhood and youth immersed in its vibrant culture. He was the lead singer of a rock band in High School and his music directors primary accompanist for three years while a studying as a student. During college, Leo worked as the Pianist for Orchard Covenant Church in Indian Orchard, MA and during summertime was employed by the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood where he served as a public relations specialist in Andris Nelson’s inaugural season as the Ray and Maria Stata Music Director.
In addition to being the Director of Christian Education & Communications Assistant for FCC Shrewsbury, he is the Children, Youth & Family Ministries Director at St. Andrews Episcopal Church in Framingham, MA, where he leads the Church School, Confirmation class and preaches on a limited basis. Leo loves the Netflix show Stranger Things and continues to write his own music when he’s not thinking of ways to build the confidence in the children he has the pleasure to work with.
The Rev. Dr. Paul Adkins, Pastor Emeritus
Paul Adkins and his wife, Debby, moved to Shrewsbury in 1983 and served as Senior Minister for 27 years before retiring from the church in 2010. They raised their two children, Nathan and Sarah, in the town and Debby was a third-grade teacher at Coolidge School and Floral Street School for 25 years.
Rev. Adkins was very involved in the Massachusetts Conference of the United Church of Christ. He served as Chair of the Conference Board of Directors, chair of the Conference Mission Partnership Committee, and vice moderator and moderator of the Conference. He was a corporate board member of the United Church Board of Homeland Ministries, the agency responsible for mission work in this country. In addition, for 24 years he has taught courses on preaching and church administration as an adjunct faculty member at Andover Newton Theological School. Additionally, Rev. Adkins worked to encourage ecumenical cooperation within the town of Shrewsbury by meeting regularly with the various town clergy and by helping sponsor interfaith services every year.
Ellen Jones, Office Administrator
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Lauren Morse, Finance Administrator
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Brian Scott, Sexton
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