Meet Pastor Kristin Stoneking
As an elder in the California-Nevada Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church, Rev. Kristin Gill Stoneking comes to Epworth with deep experience in social justice and multifaith leadership in a variety of settings.
Most recently, Kristin finished a four-year term as executive director of the Fellowship of Reconciliation (forusa.org), the nation’s oldest interfaith peace and justice organization, which includes over 60 local chapters and affiliates across the country. There she led FOR’s engagement in the Movement for Black Lives, advocacy on behalf of Syrian refugees, and guided the organization through its Centennial. Under her leadership, FOR formally joined the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign in support of rights and justice for Palestinians.
Prior to FOR, Kristin served for 14 years as executive director and pastor of the ecumenical campus ministry at UC Davis, the Cal Aggie Christian Association. There she founded the Multifaith Living Community (MLC), a $1.2 million development of townhouses housing 42 university students from a number of faith backgrounds. The MLC supports the coming together of diverse students to explore spirituality, peace, social justice and sustainable living. During her tenure in Davis, the historic organization clarified and focused its mission, and grew multifold in staff and budget.
A vocal advocate for the Occupy/Decolonize movement, Kristin mediated a tense situation just after the infamous UC Davis pepper-spraying of some of the 300 activists who had joined the Occupy Davis protest. Kristin worked with student staff, administrators and police to de-escalate the situation, culminating in what is now known as the “Walk of Silence.” When video footage of the situation “went viral” on the Internet, she used the opportunity to widely promote the message of disciplined, principled nonviolent action.
Kristin is a native of the Midwest and has pastored United Methodist churches in Lawrence, Kansas and Chicago, where she started programs to curb gang and gun violence, offer summer lunches and afterschool activities for children, and grief groups for children who had experienced the loss of a parent.
As a lesbian ordained in the UM Church, Kristin has long been involved in the struggle for full inclusion within the denomination. She interned with the Reconciling Ministries Network while in seminary, was a core organizer of the “Calledout” action in which over 100 clergy came out to the denomination in May 2016, and is one of the founding leaders of the UM Queer Clergy Caucus.
Kristin is a graduate of Rice University and Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, the United Methodist Seminary at Northwestern University where she met her wife, Elizabeth, 25 years ago. She is a former Fellow of the Pluralism Project at Harvard University and is at work on a Ph.D. at the Graduate Theological Union focusing on interreligious studies and nonviolence education. Kristin and Elizabeth have two children.