Rev. Susan Detterman St. Mark United Church of Christ
By Kelly Legg,
revsusandettermanSt. Mark United Church of Christ in Valrico lives by its mission statement: “No matter who you are, or where you are on life’s journey, you’re welcome here.” This close-knit congregation is more like an extended family, welcoming and accepting.St. Mark United Church of Christ (UCC) was established in 1984, and prides itself as a friendly, progressively thinking church. Church members are committed to their involvement in the community and host a number of organizations, including Meals On Wheels, PFLAG, Boy Scouts, as well as an outstanding preschool. The Reverend Sue Detterman has served as the senior pastor of St. Mark UCC since 2007. Previously serving UCC churches in Ohio, Virginia and New Hampshire, Detterman also served several UCC congregations in Florida as an interim pastor. In the past two decades, Detterman has been active in many different civic and ecumenical activities and has also led numerous workshops and retreats, written curriculum materials and articles, primarily about Christian education, which have been used by many denominations. A native of Ohio, Detterman was raised in the United Church of Christ Church, where her mother was very active and employed by the church. “The church became my second home while I was growing up,” said Detterman.After she graduated from The Defiance College, she then earned a Master of Arts degree in Christian Education from Scarritt Graduate School and a Master of Divinity degree from The Divinity School of Vanderbilt University. “Originally, I was majoring in elementary education, but found myself drawn toward friends in the field of social work and religion majors,” said Detterman. “I realized that caring for the ‘whole child’ became part of my calling, to care for people spiritually.”Detterman enjoys empowering people to embody faithful discipleship in both church and their daily lives, while exploring new ways to affirm and celebrate the diversity of all God’s people.This spring, the church sponsored a mission project called “One Great Hour Of Sharing.” This mission supports international programs of health, education, agricultural development relief, refugee assistance and emergency relief to victims of natural disasters. Just recently the church has began to share its space with Faith Family Community Church, a newly formed congregation with many members coming from the Metropolitan Community Church of Tampa.St. Mark United Church of Christ’s new worship service time is Sunday at 9:30 a.m. and it is located at 2914 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. in Valrico. For more information, please visit or call 685-0998.

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