Rev. Michael Walker joined DuPage UU Church in August 2019:
Being a parish minister means many things to me: leader, preacher, counselor, advocate, manager and role model… Standing as a role model is a given, but here is why: consider the cumulative effect of influences – I influence ten people, who each influence ten more – a powerful way of sharing one’s values. Furthermore, I often say that “walking one’s talk” is critical, both in the sense of integrity and self-trust, as well as to engender trust from others.
My background includes counseling and small group facilitation. From working as a psychiatric nurse, to being a volunteer leading support groups for ‘coming out’ youth, to the completion of a hospital chaplaincy internship, I have frequently found myself called to counseling and helping situations. I continue to use this skill-set in the form of pastoral counseling. My hope is that members will find congregations at which I serve to be warm and supportive in their times of joy… and hardship. Furthermore, I am building on this experience in counseling, as I pursue a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute, in the Santa Barbara, CA area, where I attend occasional intensive courses in addition to my online coursework. I envision this experience a deepening of my ministry in ways that I hope provide meaningful and helpful healing experiences for congregants and others that I serve.
You may email Mike or reach him at 630-505-9408, ext. 702
Director of Religious Education
Steve Cooper C.R.E. (Credentialed Religious Educator) has been our Director of Religious Education since 2005. Steve, a long-time member of the church, embodies a passionate commitment to instilling Unitarian Universalist values in the youth of our church and incorporating them into the whole life of the church. He is a modern-day Renaissance man whose talents inform both his leadership and his cooperative work, building trust with our youth and attracting a wide range of interested volunteers. Steve knows that youth are the future of our church and our world.
You may email Steve or reach him at 630-505-9408, ext. 703.
Sheri Regalado has supported staff and members of the congregation since 2003. She manages office functions including database maintenance, processing contributions, and assisting members and outside organizations with room reservations. Her exceptional organizational skills and long-term experience with the church are vital to the smooth functioning of this busy community.
You may email Sheri or reach her in the office at 630-505-9408, ext. 701.
Vera Pelin has been our pianist and musical accompanist since 2019. She has been playing piano, harpsichord and organ for more than 20 years. Vera holds a Bachelor degree in piano performance from the National University of Music in Bucharest, Romania. She has performed at festivals, competitions and recitals in Hungary, Romania and Moldova. Vera also teaches piano at the Naperville Music Academy and she is a member of the Illinois State Music Teacher Association.
The Rev. Dr. Myriam Renaud has been affiliated with DuPage UU Church as a community minister* since May 2013. Raised Unitarian Universalist, she was ordained as a UU minister in 2005. Her ministry to the community outside the walls of this church takes the form of academic scholarship. She is currently an advanced doctoral student in theology at the University of Chicago Divinity School. Her dissertation focuses on the concept of God, taking a UU-friendly approach grounded in philosophy and ethics.
Rev. Renaud is a frequent contributor of theology columns to the UU World, regularly presents papers at UU and other conferences, works at The Parliament of World Religions, has taught liberal theology for the CLF and as a Lecturer at Meadville Lombard Theological School, and serves as the Managing Editor of Sightings, a twice-weekly, online publication sponsored by the Martin Marty Center for the Advanced Study of Religion. She also blogs at TheNakedTheologian.com. She is a member of the UUA’s Commission on Appraisal.
Rev. Renaud holds a Master of Divinity degree from the University of Chicago Divinity School. A software engineer in her first career, she earned an undergraduate degree in chemistry and a graduate degree in computer science from the University of Missouri at Rolla. She lives in Chicago with her teenage daughter, Sidney, and her husband, Paul, a musician and fiction-writer.
* Community ministers are ordained Unitarian Universalist (UU) ministers who take our message and care beyond the walls of an individual church. Each community minister affiliates with a UU congregation.