The Rev. Christopher Potter
Office phone: 949.888.4568
The Rev. Karen D. Maurer
Office phone: 949.888.4595 x239
Dr. Michael D. Pratt, Head of School
Patti Peebles, Youth Pastor and School Chaplain
949.888.4536 or 949.290.0833
Cynthia A. Drennan, Administrator
Roger H. Bradshaw, Assistant Administrator
Sheryll Grogan, Sunday School Director
949.858.5144 x344 or 949.858.0773
Lorraine¬†Kamholz, Assistant Sunday School Director
The Rev. Christopher Potter, Vicar
Fr. Christopher was appointed vicar of St. John’s Church and School in May 2017.¬† St. John’s Church has nearly¬†300 members; St. John’s School has about 450 students, ranging from infants to kids in eighth grade.¬†
Fr. Christopher’s path to St. John’s is fascinating! Born into the¬†Roman Catholic tradition, Christopher felt God’s call to ministry¬†around the age of 13. He received¬†a B.A. in Philosophy, with a music minor, from¬†The University of¬†San Diego, and an M.Div in Ministry, from St. John’s University, Collegeville Minnesota. He was ordained a Catholic priest in 1982, and served in several pastoral assignments¬†in Riverside and San Bernardino Counties. He¬†took leave from parochial ministry,¬†married, raised¬†a family, and¬†built a few businesses along the way.
Though living and working in the secular world, Christopher always sought¬†to¬†bring healing where people were broken and isolated and to offer hope to people who were in desperate straits. “I realized that my heart¬†and activities¬†had never left priestly ministry¬†and¬†after fifteen years as an Episcopal layman,¬†I¬†asked Bishop Bruno to accept me as an Episcopal priest in the Diocese of Los Angeles. Now I’m a single father of an adult daughter and doing what I love most in life!”
At St. John’s, Fr. Christopher sees his priestly role as fostering and nurturing hope. “My passion and education merge at the intersections of liturgy, education,¬†personal response¬†to the Gospel of Jesus, and encouraging people to join in the work of fulfilling God‚Äôs reign on earth. A priest is called to be the mid-wife of hope.¬†
“With humility and prayer,¬†priests are called to¬†enter with God into people‚Äôs lives when loss, injury or¬†death have robbed them of vision. Together with them and¬†with¬†God‚Äôs grace, priests give birth to hope and rebuild lives. We find amid tragedy the unending love God has for the world as seen and taught by Jesus.”
Fr. Christopher previously served as Assisting Priest at St. Stephen’s and St. Joseph in Buena Park, and most recently as Priest-in-Charge at Church of the Blessed Sacrament in Placentia from 2013 to April 2017.¬†
In the Episcopal Church, Christopher served on two diocesan committees: the Bishop’s Liturgy Committee, and the Diocesan Committee on Disabilities. He also holds licenses/certifications in California as a Group Home Administrator, Adult Residential Facility Administrator, and is a Certified Instructor in Non-Violent Crisis Intervention and Prevention.
In his free time Fr. Christopher enjoys spending time with his daughter, cooking, and riding his¬†bicycle¬†15 miles a day.¬†
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The Rev. Karen S. Maurer, Associate Vicar
Rev. Karen was baptized a Presbyterian, confirmed in the Lutheran Church, and finally arrived at the Episcopal Church in 1982, and was received into TEC shortly after. Before going to Seminary, Karen taught Sunday School, worked in various leadership positions which included Vestry (twice), worship leadership, Cursillo ministry, Bible Studies in two Episcopal Churches ‚ÄĒ St. Clement‚Äôs in San Clemente and Emmanuel, Fullerton. In addition, after their children were mostly grown, Karen worked for Capistrano Unified School District in the Adult Transition program, followed by employment by Casa de Amma in San Juan Capistrano.
Karen was ordained with her husband, Dave, in 2007. They served at three Episcopal churches in the Inland Empire: St. Peter‚Äôs, Rialto; St. Luke‚Äôs, Fontana; and St. Clare‚Äôs, Rancho Cucamonga. In February 2014 Karen was called to St. Wilfrid of York Episcopal Church in Huntington Beach. Karen‚Äôs beloved husband, Rev. Dave, went on permanent disability due to an Alzheimer‚Äôs diagnosis. He passed away January 6, 2016.
At St. Wilfrid‚Äôs, Karen‚Äôs areas of responsibility were Pastoral Care and Outreach, with a particular focus as Executive Director of Beach Cities Interfaith Services, a 501c3 organization whose mission is to offer compassionate, faith-based service to all in need.
As St. John‚Äôs Associate Vicar, Karen believes her role is to partner with Rev. Christopher, the people of St. John‚Äôs, and the church staff to present the Gospel with love, humor and compassion in every encounter, including the greater Rancho Santa Margarita community.
Karen says, ‚ÄúAs a person, my greatest joy is found in relationships; with God, family, friends, and with all people with whom I come in contact. God‚Äôs care for each of us is so deep, so intimate, so filled with compassion and love! My prayer is that, as a priest I might be able in some small way to convey the magnificence and beauty of our loving Triune God.‚ÄĚ
Karen and Dave have two children, Gretchen, and Michael. Gretchen Killebrew and her husband Mark have three children Kye, Kalena and Ella. Michael Maurer and his wife Haley have two children, Vivienne and Jackson. Karen is close to her family members, including her sister JoAnne Sand and her husband Brad; Dave‚Äôs brothers Stephen Maurer and his wife Jane, and Larry and his wife Barbara. Many nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grand nephews round out Karen‚Äôs extended family.
Karen‚Äôs hobbies include daily walks, beach doubles volleyball, reading, swimming, playing music with friends, spending time with family and friends, and entertaining at home.
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