Pastor Randy Prentiss
I have been married to Lisa for 36 years. We have two sons, Ben 24 and Sam, 22. I grew up on Long Island and moved to the Hudson Valley in 1972. Lisa was born and raised in Dutchess County. Growing up, my family were not regular church goers, so I had little exposure to Christianity. I came to a faith in Christ in 1980, when I was 25, through the faithful witness of a group of friends.
A couple of years later, Lisa had started a Youth Group at the Clinton Alliance Church, and she invited me to help out. It was great, and we both deeply enjoyed the kids and doing youth ministry. We served as volunteer leaders of that Youth Group for 10 years.
After coming to faith in Christ, I had a growing desire to learn and serve. I started attending the Alliance Theological Seminary in 1984, shortly after Lisa and I married. I graduated from the seminary in 1989. Wanting to get into full-time youth ministry, Lisa and I worked with others to form Mid-Hudson Young Life. I served as the Area Director of MHYL for 10 years. During that time our own little youth group came along; Ben and Sam.
In 2001, I became the Youth Pastor at the Hopewell Reformed Church. I then felt a call to be ordained, and was ordained as a Minster of Word and Sacrament in 2008. After 12 years at Hopewell, mostly doing Youth Ministry, I took a call to the Arlington Reformed Church in 2010. That was a unique and challenging experience, working with a diverse group of people on the edge of the City of Poughkeepsie.
Following that, in one of those “I never saw this coming” moves, God found me a job at the Taconic Retreat Center. I was surprised by and pleased by how much I enjoyed that ministry. I worked mostly as the Associate Director and Staff Chaplain, but really did a little bit of everything.
Now, at the beginning of 2021, I am living into another one of those “I never saw this coming” moments. It is true. I did not see myself getting back into church work. But, as 2021 starts, I have part-time jobs at 2 churches. I am the part-time Pastor of the Saugerties Reformed Church, and part-time youth ministry director at the Hopewell Reformed Church. Who knew?
It just confirms what I heard a pastor say a few years ago, “God is already present in the future that we are anxious about.” I am thrilled to be here, and look forward to riding shotgun alongside of what God is doing.