About Our Pastor

RevBruce_smSince 1984, I have been in ministry in Michigan and Massachusetts. Originally ordained in the United Methodist Church in 1986, I transferred my standing to the United Church of Christ in 2002.

While attending seminary at Boston University School of Theology, I formed some bonds that have stayed with me for more than 30 years. It was there that I met my wife of 34 years, Beverly, who is also a pastor. It was there that I became enraptured with the Boston Marathon, eventually running it seven times, and giving me a way to enjoy my lifelong delight with physical activity. Oh, yes . . . those Red Sox, too.

Since beginning parish ministry, I have also served as a chaplain in the healthcare field, at Baystate Wing Hospital in Palmer, with its affiliated hospice program, and at VNA Care Hospice of Worcester. In 2000, I received an M.Ed. in Marriage and Family Therapy from Springfield College.

My wife, Beverly, is the pastor of the Athol Congregational Church. She received a Doctor of Ministry degree from Hartford Seminary in 2004 in the field of Conflict Transformation. Together have we raised two amazing children. Our oldest, Jesse, is a data scientist at a high-frequency trading firm in Chicago. Our daughter, Carrie, is a civil engineer working in Chicago as a construction engineer for Gilbane Construction. They live a few miles apart, and needless to say, we enjoy visiting Chicago!

We have two rescue dogs who do a fine job of keeping us on our toes. Tango is a German Shepherd/Chinook mix (Chinook is a sled dog), and Annie is a German Shepherd/Collie mix. They are superlative running partners for both Beverly and me.

I also enjoy playing the piano. I took lessons for a few years, starting in 2001, and continue to play for my own enjoyment and relaxation. Don’t look for me to be headlining any local venues anytime soon! Music is an important part of my life in general, and my life of faith in particular. God has touched my soul more times than I can count through the gift of music, including rock, country, gospel, praise, rap, classical, folk and even hip-hop.

Developing our spiritual lives is what faith is all about: growing together in Christ. We experience God in so many ways: nature, family, friends, pets, music, worship, fellowship, and even through strangers. I have experienced God’s healing love in my life, and I know that God lives! God is still speaking, and we listen . . . together.

Rev. Bruce Prestwood-Taylor