First United Methodist Church Ellwood City
Monday, April 22, 2024

Lay Leader


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Jerry Rectenwald

     I have been a member of First UMC Ellwood City since the mid 1980’s, and have been blessed and privileged to serve my congregation, my community and the world in the name and power of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  I was raised in the Roman Catholic tradition, but came to personal saving faith primarily through the testimony of my wife, Sandi and her parents, Vic and Molly Brown.  Those three (United Methodist) saints remain three of my faith heroes.

     I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, one of 9 children of Bob and Audrey Rectenwald.  I met Sandi while attending college at Slippery Rock, and we married and settled in Ellwood City.  Sandi and I are the parents of four grown children, all of whom love and serve the Lord, and one child – born premature – who is with the Lord.

God has gifted Sandi and me with musical talent, and we are privileged to minister in that capacity: in our church’s praise band, and as a Christian music duo.  

     Since 1998, I have been blessed to work as a manager for a fine construction company that builds retail stores nationwide.  Prior to that, I worked in the field of Physical Therapy.

     I enjoy reading and hiking.  But my favorite thing is to spend time with my family: talking, telling stories and laughing till my stomach hurts.

     I have strong interests in Christian theology, prayer and worship.  Writing is a passion of mine, and I enjoy penning an article for our church’s monthly Newsletter.

      I have come to appreciate more the connectional nature of the UMC, and have answered God’s call to serve in leadership positions beyond my local church.  That experience has opened different avenues of ministry, and it has brought me in contact with many inspiring saints.

     I believe God has placed me at First UMC so that I may learn how to be part of a loving, forgiving, worshipping church family.  I have always been a slow learner, and it seems that every day I learn something new about being a loving Christian brother.

     I find being a disciple of Jesus to be endlessly challenging, severely humbling and immensely engaging.  I have made many mistakes.  But time and again I have been the grateful recipient of forgiveness from God and God’s people.


Sunday Worship
Sunday School: 9:45 AM
Worship Service:  11:00 AM
Office Hours
Monday and Tuesday
8:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Wednesday and Thursday
8:30 am - 2:00 pm