|Introducing Our New Secretary|
By Patrice (Patty) Sampson-Bouchard
It is with gratitude and joy that I write to you as the new Secretary of the Upstate Synod. Thank you for your support at our recent Assembly and as we go forward to do Christ's work in our Synod.
I was baptized in the Lutheran faith in Cliffside Park, NJ where my parents started their married life together. My father's work took our family to several locations before we moved to Fayetteville NY, where we lived during my school years. We worshipped at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, where I was confirmed. At Good Shepherd I was influenced by a wonderful faith community and great faith experiences like Vanderkamp and summer church camp.
After college and finding full-time employment in the financial services industry, I experienced the usual twists and turns in the road of a young adult, which were also significant milestones in my faith journey. Fast forward to the early 90's when my daughter and I were looking for a church home in Rochester and found Incarnate Word Lutheran Church! I was taken by the preaching, warmth of the congregation and the inspiring music. As my daughter came closer to Confirmation age, we changed churches to be closer to our home in Fairport and for Meg to be with school buddies in Sunday School and Confirmation. We became members of Bethlehem Lutheran Church, Fairport 14 years ago!!
Bethlehem has been an incredible aspect of my faith journey. During the early years at BLC, I served as Usher, Assistant Minister, Council Representative, Deacon and Council President. Currently, I am finishing my second 3 year term on Council which includes being liaison to the Finance Task Force and Fellowship Committee. I have been a mentor to one of our Confirmation students each year and I know that sharing their faith journeys has greatly influenced mine! I was blessed with the opportunity to launch a Dinner Ministry at Bethlehem 8 years ago which consists of serving a hot meal to the elderly and poor in Perinton once a month. I continue to administer that program and am touched by the generosity and compassion of our congregation and community.
It is now 22 years that I have been in Rochester, specifically Fairport! We love this community and especially our faith community. My husband John and I have 3 children. We are just beginning to experience the empty nest years! In fact, we also leave the nest pretty empty most days as we both work full time and embrace the organizations and activities that are meaningful to us. I am a licensed financial services professional and work for TIAA-Cref as an advisor in their Rochester office helping individuals with all matters concerning their financial security and assisting them in their stewardship of their financial resources In addition to my work and faith life, I especially enjoy spending leisure time traveling, being out-of-doors in any way, gardening, reading or playing the mountain dulcimer.
Now as Synod Secretary, I look forward to the next phase of my faith journey and what might be in store! I sincerely hope that I can get to know many of you and learn about your faith and life journeys! Thank you again for your support and affirmation. I look forward to seeing you at our next Synod gathering. Have a blessed and safe summer!