Rene' Devantier - Pastor - Contact
I was born on July 7th, 1964 in Berlin, W. Germany and raised in Germany by my Grandmother; my parents were divorced at age 6, and my younger brother went into an orphanage. I lived with my grandmother till the age of 16 when I moved to the USA to live with my mother. There were two things pretty steady in my life. One was my love of soccer, and the other was my hunger for something deeper, even bigger. My mother died in 1988 and the shock and awe of her passing ignited my search for God. Though I tried again and again for many years, my search proved elusive until later in my life. Finally, at age 35 it would be my love for soccer and the kids I was coaching that would lead me to a place that would satisfy that deep hunger (Jesus).
I am Married to Jennifer, and we have 4 children and 1 Granddaughter, but the only one left at home is Ryan who is 15 and has special needs…Jen and I met in the mid 80’s and dated for a few years. She went off to college and I went off to Texas. We then lost touch with each other. We both raised families and after divorces reconnected through Facebook 20 years later. I moved back to WA in 2009, we got married, and here we are…thank you Facebook. Jen is a nurse and she works as a nurse manager at the Riverfront Kaiser location. Ryan goes to Central Valley High in a special needs class.
Before coming back to Washington in 2009 I spent 11 years in Texas serving several churches along the Gulf of Mexico. Since moving to Washington from Texas we have served 2 churches on the other side of the mountains. We have settled in, all our boxes are unpacked, Ryan loves his new school, Jen works at Kaiser Permanente where she manages several specialized doctors’ offices, and I was ready to once again serve a church. When early this summer Fowler United Methodist was beginning to look for a new pastor, I seemed to fit the bill. I have been serving Fowler since July 2019, and it has been a lot of fun. Come and see…
Sue Robinson - CLM - Contact
Sue Robinson is a Certified Lay Minister, assigned to Fowler to help with preaching, pastoral care and special programs. Sue was a hospital chaplain for 25 years, and has been trained as a spiritual director.
Sue grew up just a few blocks from the church, attended Willard Elementary and is excited to be part of the outreach to this neighborhood. Sue plans worship services, is a small group leader, works with our multicultural ministry and enjoys preaching.
When she’s not at church Sue enjoys going to Waitts Lake, visiting friends and family and sewing.
Favorite scripture: 1 John 19: This is how we set our hearts at rest in his presence - whenever our hearts condemn us. God’s heart is greater than our hearts and God knows everything.
Nathan Kennedy-Gibbens - Music Coordinator - Contact
I was born in 1973 in the Tri-Cities, located in southeastern Washington, and from the beginning was raised in the United Methodist Church. My family attended a small UM church in Pasco. When I was growing up, this became my place to begin growing my musical gifts in the church. My parents supported me by providing piano and percussion lessons, and I always loved playing in the school band program. We later moved to Ephrata when I was in high school, and by that time my passion for music was central to my developing sense of identity. I attended Central Washington University and received a BA in music with an emphasis on percussion and piano. While in college, I served as a camp counselor during summer breaks and this is where I first met my wife, Tamara. My love for the church and for using my musical gifts continued to grow. By the time I finished college, I found my way into professional work in the church serving in music leadership. I moved to Spokane upon entering Whitworth as a grad student which was also in proximity to Tamara. We married in 1999, and I worked for many years as the Coordinator of Music Ministries at Covenant UMC in north Spokane.
Tamara and I are now raising three vibrant boys and we have attended Fowler UMC for nearly ten years. Tamara is a high school teacher at Mead. Our oldest two sons attend the school where she teaches, and our youngest son attends middle school. I currently am using my musical skills and passions to lead our worship band, coordinate our choir program, lead our Sunday School children and youth in song, and direct our marimba band on an alternating schedule. You can usually find me at the piano on Sunday mornings during our worship services, leading, singing, and enjoying being in Christian fellowship with our diverse congregation.
Some of my other hobbies include running, biking, and swimming, eating spicy food, hiking, and mostly, spending time with my family regardless of what we are doing...even if it’s yard work or putting away laundry! Our family loves Fowler UMC, its range of ages, ethnic diversity, and the cozy warm feel of the love of our congregation. We invite you to visit and experience God’s love evident and real in this place called Fowler United Methodist Church!
Shelley Barton - Youth and Children Director - Contact
Shelley is a Mom of 3 boys and Grandmother to 4 amazing grandchildren. A retired Teacher of 20 years and a lifelong learner. She was also a former Youth Pastor for 15 years at Trinity UMC in Sequim WA. Shelly grew up at Fowler UMC and returned in 2017. She joined our staff in 2019 as the Youth Director.
In her free time she enjoys playing the piano, gardening, and just hanging out with our youth. If she had a million dollars she would use it to spend more time with her grand-kids.
Diane Strobeck - Office Manager - Contact
Diane is a woman that has answered the call to serve time and time again. This began at birth, being raised in her Military family in Tacoma, Washington. Diane’s early years were spent in Germany, then settled in Southwest Oklahoma. Lawton Oklahoma is the home to Fort Sill where her father was stationed until retirement. Diane graduated High School in 1983 and went to college at Cameron University.
In 1996, she met her husband, Bill Strobeck, a Soldier stationed at Fort Sill. They married two years later and this is where her selfless service began to flourish. Within two years, the family went from 2 to 6. Blending her two boys with two boys from Bill’s previous marriage. Diane was the glue that held the family together while Bill served in the Army.
2005, back in Southwest Oklahoma we landed on our feet once again, finding the Boy Scouts and a great Methodist church. Diane became a leader in cub scouts and still serves on multiple committee’s within Scouts BSA. Diane’s has a true desire to Serve God. Since 2010, Diane has served in the role of Ministries assistant in multiple churches, and has been a part of many ministries throughout the church.