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Messiah College Team

Donald Opitz (Ph.D.)
Donald Opitz (Ph.D.)

College Pastor to the Messiah College Community

Donald Opitz (Ph.D.)

College Pastor to the Messiah College Community

imagedopitz@messiah.edu image(717) 766-2511, ext. 6520

Don is a graduate of Westminster College, Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary (M.Div.) and Boston University (Ph.D.) He is also an ordained minister in the PCUSA. Early in his career Don worked in campus ministry and leadsership studies before becoming professor of sociology and higher education at Geneva College. Don and lovely Christine have two grown daughters, Lauren and Katie, and one scruffy mutt, Izzy. Don loves trees and trout, and he loves students and learning, and so he feels like he has found a corner of paradise here at Messiah College.

Evie Telfer (M.Div)
Evie Telfer (M.Div)

Student Ministries Pastor

Evie Telfer (M.Div)

Student Ministries Pastor

imageetelfer@messiah.edu image(717) 766-2511, ext. 7224

She advises the student chaplain ministries including the Koinonia small group ministry, Kairos Chapel and the prayer ministry. She also assists in the planning and programming of the chapel and preaches in common chapel each semester. 

Evie provides pastoral counseling through a partnership with the Engle Center. Her research interests focus on understanding the factors influencing spiritual development in young adults. Evie provides leadership in efforts to highlight reconciliation and crosscultural understanding and interaction. She actively mentors numerous students seeking the vocation of ministry.

Cathy Coleman (M.A.)
Cathy Coleman (M.A.)

Assistant Pastor in College Ministries

Cathy Coleman (M.A.)

Assistant Pastor in College Ministries

imageccoleman@messiah.edu image(717) 766-2511, ext. 3082

She has a BA in Biblical Studies from Lancaster Bible College and an MA in Human Services from Lincoln University. Cathy has worked as a director of both the Salvation Army and the Hemlock Girl Scout Council and owned an early childhood learning center. Cathy has also used her gifts as an international speaker on the topic of purpose and destiny and has authored a poetry journal on achieving the best in life. Currently, she serves as the senior pastor at the Agape International Family Worship Center in Harrisburg. She is continuing her doctoral work and teaches in the CORE. Cathy lives in Harrisburg with her husband and two teenage daughters and enjoys reading and bowling in her limited free time.

Brian Smith (Ph.D.)
Brian Smith (Ph.D.)

Teaching Pastor, Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible and Chair of Department of Biblical and Religious Studies

Brian Smith (Ph.D.)

Teaching Pastor, Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible and Chair of Department of Biblical and Religious Studies

Brian's position brings the curricular and co-curricular sides of campus together; as a faculty member in the Department of Biblical and Religious Studies, he teaches courses in Old Testament, Hebrew, and biblical interpretation. As teaching pastor, he preaches regularly in chapel and helps coordinate chapel programming.

Brian's research interests stretch from ancient Mesopotamia to faith development among 21st century college students. Watching students engage ancient Israel and the New Testament through the lens of their own developing faith motivates him to continually wonder at the roles of the Bible, tradition, and experience in present-day spirituality.

Douglas Curry (D.Min)
Douglas Curry (D.Min)

Worship Pastor

Douglas Curry (D.Min)

Worship Pastor

imagedcurry1@messiah.edu image(717) 766-2511, ext. 6721

He is primarily responsible for planning, leading, and giving shape to campus worship services. He provides guidance, support, and oversight to the Worship Community, a co-curricular group of students committed to the development of skills, abilities, and the understanding of connecting the arts and theology in contexts of private and corporate worship.

Students mentored under Doug's tutelage bring leadership to chapel and other worship events alongside College Ministries pastoral staff. Additionally, he serves as an adjunct instructor in the Department of Biblical and Religious Studies and in interdisciplinary studies. Douglas serves as advisor to Powerhouse and other campus groups and College constituencies that include worship as a primary emphasis in their events. A professional vocalist and choral director, he also serves as a resource to music department ensembles for education and training in musical ministry skills, spiritual development, and the consideration of worship as an integral part of spiritual formation.