Reverend Susan (Susie) Jane Maxwell is Centre Street’s enthusiastic pastor. Having not grown up in a faith tradition, yet experiencing something larger and present in life and all of creation, Susie identifies with the faith-seeking postmoderns who know there are many paths to God/the Holy/the Mystery/ the Divine. A prior career in pediatric occupational therapy gave way to seminary. After a stellar start at Bangor Theological Seminary, she graduated from Andover Newton Theological School in 2014 with her Masters in Divinity.
Susie's interests are in pastoral care and counseling, spiritual wellness and development and preaching. In all aspects of her being, she thrives for creativity and openness. Susie loves and respects the rich aspects and traditions of the church’s worshipping identity, and especially seeks to connect what Scripture has testified to in the past, with today. Susie also seeks to broaden Scripture and tradition in order to make room for God’s on-going and usually mysterious revelation. Her favorite quality in her congregation is their openness to their shared faith journey. Susie finds them to be generous and loving people.
Susie loves hiking, camping, canoeing, photography, writing and spending time with all the little people in her life (grandchildren and grand nieces and nephews). Susie and her husband Greg live in Whiting with their cats (and the cats LOVE to sit near the keyboard and supervise when Susie is writing a sermon!).
Cindy Huggins directs Centre Street Church’s two musical groups, the Chancel Choir and the Handbell Choir. A native Southerner, Cindy has a bachelor’s degree in music from Furman University and a Ph.D. in English from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Her diverse employment background includes running the food service at a large Southern Baptist conference center, selling elevated toilet seats at a medical supply company, typing purchase orders for parts needed in the manufacture of the seats in fighter jets, teaching college students about Victorian poetry and novels, and spending ten years as president of a small liberal arts university. Making music with the Centre Street choirs, however, is one of her all-time favorite jobs. Why? Because she gets to work with a community of wonderful, talented, generous people who love God and each other. And because music—making it and listening to it—is healing, transformative, and uplifts our very souls. Cindy breathes life into the music at Centre Street, come sing with us!
Bonnie Atkinson is one of Centre Street Church's many musicians. She accompanies the Chancel Choir, and also plays the hymns and service music on the beautiful Steinway piano each Sunday morning at Centre Street! Bonnie holds a Bachelor of Music Education Degree from UMaine and a Master of Music Education Degree from Gordon College. She currently teaches Grades K-12 Music in four schools: D.W. Merritt in Addison, Harrington Elementary, Milbridge Elementary and Narraguagus Junior/Senior High School.
She has been a member of the Machias music community since moving to Downeast Maine in 1997 playing for many local churches, musicals, Town Band performances and more! Her piano playing is so beautiful, people are often moved to tears - we kid you not. Come listen!
Elaine Whitney Cale is one of the church's long time members. She was placed on the cradle roll in 1953 and grew up in the church, along with four younger brothers. Elaine enjoys singing in the chancel choir and has done so for many years. She chairs the Board of Deacons and also serves as financial secretary. She is grateful that her parents made “church” a priority - it's her deep faith that gets her through the day!
Elaine feels fortunate to have been able to stay in her hometown after graduating from the University of Maine at Machias. Professionally, Elaine became a voice for early intervention issues, promoting public awareness and education about the value of early intervention and the value of children and families served. She found her work “very gratifying”. Now semi-retired, she is thrilled to have the opportunity to work closely with Pastor Susie as Administrative Assistant. Elaine loves people and she learned from one of the best (her mother, Dot Mae), the importance of being genuinely kind and caring to all people. That's why this job is such a good fit for her!