Rev. Jessica Margrave Schirm grew up in Kentucky and in the Southern Baptist Church. As she shared in her ministerial profile, Jessica felt God’s call to ministry from a young age despite being raised in a tradition that does not recognize God’s ability to call women into vocational ministry. Jessica struggled to make sense out of her calling which led her on a journey across denominations and through many communities. “All along the way,” Jessica shares, “God continued to call. I have spent my life responding to God’s call to the best of my ability.”
Pastor Jessica completed her undergraduate degree with a Bachelor of Arts in Religion at Cumberland College (now University of the Cumberlands) and her Master of Divinity at Wake Forest University, where she discovered her love of pastoral care and preaching. Since then, she has fulfilled her calling in both chaplaincy and pastoral roles. Through her spouse, Matt, she was introduced to the UCC and shares that it “felt like finding the progressive, spiritual home I’d longed for.” She has served two congregations as a called pastor, Central Baptist in Lexington, KY and St. John’s UCC in northeast Iowa. She has also served as a chaplain in both hospital and hospice settings. Jessica and Matt live in Pella with their three sons, Anderson, Gabriel and Langston, and they look forward to attending Grinnell UCC as a family. Pastor Jessica is committed to developing meaningful relationships in the Grinnell community as well as in our congregation.
Besides pastoring, caring for her family and advocating for social justice, Jessica loves watching baseball, thrift store shopping and reading. Music, cake and mindless novels make her happy.
Jessica’s email is: firstname.lastname@example.org