Who We Are
Rev. Jeanette Surita-Vazquetelles MDiv. (she, her, hers).
I am an Afro-Latinx Puerto Rican originally from the Bronx, New York. I am married to my best friend and blessed to be called Mom by my adult daughter who continues to reside in NYC. I hold the Master of Divinity with a concentration in Latino Ministry from Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia; a Bachelor of Arts from Hunter College- City University of New York with a major in Spanish Literature and an Associate in Applied Science from Fashion Institute of Technology - State University of New York where I specialized in fashion design and construction. This last preparation served as the underpinning of my earlier career operating my own bridal couture business.
My spiritual formation is defined in Ecclesiastes 4:12 “. . . a cord of three strands is not easily broken.”
As a child I was baptized in the Roman Catholic tradition. During my early teens I began serving in community evangelism through a Pentecostal Assemblies of God church, David Wilkerson’s Teen Challenge Program and Crossroads Youth Program in East Harlem, New York. In 2010, a friend invited me to ‘check out’ a Lutheran Church where he was the Pastor. My contribution of time, talent and treasure included involvement with the children’s ministry and voluntary work “wherever needed” at St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church which led to my completing the N.Y. Diakonia three-year program and subsequently an eighteen-month internship toward becoming a Synodical Deacon. In 2013, I was set apart as a Synodical Deacon for the Metro NY Synod and St Paul’s ELC – Parkchester, Bronx, N.Y. In the Summer of 2014, I was accepted to the then new three-year Master of Divinity Cooperative Program at the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia. In October of 2014, I began an internship at and was installed as the Vicar of St. Peter Evangelical Lutheran Church Eastpoint/ Colgate - Baltimore County, Maryland. Two weeks into my vicarage I was granted special dispensation by then Bishop Wolfgang Herz-Lane to serve as the Shepherd and Fisherwoman for St. Peter. Upon accomplishing the Master of Divinity, I was ordained as a Minister of Word and Sacrament on June 9, 2017. I served St. Peter Evangelical Lutheran Church for six and half years.
On December 20th, 2020 I accepted a call to serve Hope Lutheran Church in Annandale, Virginia. March 1, 2021 I was excitedly welcomed at Hope Lutheran as their new pastor and became a member of the Metro DC Synod.
I honor God’s call and remain humble by remembering that I have been set apart and not above. All that I do is for the glory of God. God is good all the time and all the time God is good.
Nami is originally from Seoul, Korea. She was baptized in July 1996 at Hope Lutheran Church and has been a member ever since. She has worked in the office (part-time) since 1999 and serves on altar guild and Bells of Hope. She enjoys being at Hope and says “Members of Hope are so sincere, thoughtful, and willing to support each other.” She enjoys biking, walking; spending time with her husband and family, her dog, Twix, and seeing friends at the beach.
Uhjin Kim holds a Master of Music in Piano performance from Boston Univ.. She also has a M.M in organ performance at Peabody conservatory fo Johnshopkins Univ. Originally from Korea, she has lived in Virginia since 2002. She and her husband have two children and together they enjoy hiking in National Parks (especially the Shenandoah) and traveling to Korea to visit family.
- We believe in the One and Triune God:
- The One who gives us our existence and endows us our lives with beauty, meaning, and purpose.
- The One who heals our brokenness and frees us from guilt, the self-destructive compulsions of sin and evil.
- The One who rescues us from death, gives us eternal life, and empowers us to practice compassion and love even our enemies.
- We believe that faith must be active in love.
- We believe that love means to seek the well being of the other.
- We believe that faith and love imbue inform everything that we do in all aspects of our lives including politics and economics (they don't just belong to Sunday mornings).
- We believe that faith and love engender hope.
- We believe that hope, faith and love have the power to transform lives and to change the world into a better place.