Newtown Congregational Church
14 West Street
Newtown, Connecticut 06470
9:00AM to 5:00PM
Tuesday through Friday
Newtown Congregational Church, UCC
The Head of Newtown Congregational Church is Christ and as a church we choose to follow his lead.
The pastoral leadership provides spiritual oversight for the congregation. Our pastors maintain the spiritual well-being and growth of the congregation through:
Worship leadership and sermons
Administration of the sacraments of baptism and holy communion
Personal and family pastoral care as the need arises
Hospital and home visits for comfort and support
Teaching Christian principles to our children, youth, and adults through classes.
If our pastoral leadership can be of service to you, please feel free to contact the church office.
Our Lay Leadership provides many areas of the important and much needed work of the church through endless volunteering of time, talent, and treasure. Our congregation understands that to enhance a life of faith a deep commitment is needed beyond the Sunday morning worship time.
Reverend Matthew Crebbin
Rev. Matthew Crebbin has been the Senior Minister the Newtown Congregational Church, UCC since 2007. He has served faith communities in New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. A sought after preacher and lecturer, his ministry has focused upon a variety of areas including: theological dialogue, ecumenical and interfaith partnerships, youth and young adult ministries - as well as justice and peace advocacy. He is the Coordinator of the Newtown Interfaith Clergy Association.
Rev. Crebbin grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley where he received a BA in Legal Studies in 1988. He received his MDiv. from Andover Newtown Theological School in 1994. He has served in leadership capacity on a number of local, regional and international organizations including: Rotary International, Habitat for Humanity, and various other Health and Human Services organizations.
Since the events at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012, Rev. Crebbin has worked with a broad coalition of faith leaders in CT and nationally to build bridges of understanding and compassion between diverse communities. He has been a leader in promoting peace and reconciliation near and far and has offered his voice and support to the passing of gun safety legislation and finding other means locally and nationally to reduce gun violence in all communities.
Matt is married to Martha and they have four children and a black lab. When not involved in ministry or transporting his children to their various activities all around the area, Matt enjoys playing music, singing, carpentry, working on his house, and playing basketball.
Rev. Kristen Provost Switzer
Minister of Youth and Mission
As of August 1, 2016 the Newtown Congregational Church membership welcomes Rev. Kristen Provost Switzer into the church ministerial staff!
Rev. Kristin Provost Switzer is proud to call herself a native of Newtown, Connecticut. She grew up in Sandy Hook and graduated from Newtown High School. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Northeastern University, a Certificate of Professional Ministry from Hartford Seminary, and a Master of Divinity from Yale Divinity School. She has worked with youth as Youth Group Advisor at Monroe Congregational Church, Youth Ministerr of Spring Glen Church, UCC and as Designated Pastor of Prospect Congregational Church, UCC. She was ordained on June 7, 2015 while serving at the Prospect Congregational Church, UCC in Prospect, Connecticut.
While at Yale, Kristin coordinated Abraham's Tent at Columbus House, a program that houses homeless men during the winter months in synagogues and churches around New Haven. Kristen completed chaplaincy training as Chaplain Intern at Stamford Hospital; she later went on to serve the community of Prospect, Connecticut as Fire Department Chaplain.
Kristen is currently involved with the wider community of Newtown, and currently serves on the Newtown Board of Ethics. She lives in her hometown of Sandy Hook with her husband Scott, who is a professional bassoonist with the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra and Lecturer in Music at Norwalk Community college. They are members of the New England New Music Ensemble. Kristen loves to spend much of her free time with her husband, at the gym, hiking, eating vegetarian food, and playing with their three cats Fred, Toni, and Clara.
John Leibensperger, MM, AD
Director of Music
Born and raised in Southeast Pennsylvania, John is a recent graduate of the Yale School of Music and holds additional degrees in tuba performance from Temple and Georgia State Universities.
As a conductor, John founded and directed a youth wind ensemble for the Community Music Scholars Program in Philadelphia. His belief that all people should have the opportunity to express themselves through music led him to create a low-brass studio for the El Sistema-based Play, On Philly! program and to work as a teaching artist in the New Haven Public School System. John spent seven years on the music staff at Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia where he directed the Men’s Choir, and led the chamber orchestra and adult choir on numerous occasions.
John performs over 120 concerts each year across the United States as the tubist with The King’s Brass. He has also performed with the Atlanta Symphony, Reading Symphony, Pennsylvania Symphony, and the Southeast Pennsylvania Symphony and teaches and freelances throughout the Northeast.
As of last June, John and his wife, Lola, proudly reside in Milford, CT where they enjoy visiting Silver Sands Beach and relaxing with their 11-year old beagle, Daisy.
After having been an active and involved Newtown Congregational Church member for nine years, Vicky was hired as Office Administrator in 2009. Her first priority was to create an inviting atmosphere of “extravagant” welcome for everyone who enters the office. This was initially accomplished by providing comfortable seating, fresh coffee & tea, small snacks, and items for children to enjoy while parents are in conference with the pastors. The cozy atmosphere has evolved over the years to include an environmentally efficient bowl containing a beta fish (viewed at child height) and a fluffy white Golden Retriever named Hyggelig (pronounced “hooga-lee”) – a Danish word that basically translates to mean "cozy" and “let’s share a good time together”.
Another area of great importance to Vicky is to provide thorough communication to the congregation. This has been achieved through the introduction of and distribution of colorful weekly emails, creation and maintenance of a facebook page, development and continual support of a website, and construction of a detailed monthly newsletter.
To describe Vicky's personal philosophy is to quote her repeated statement given to her daughter during her formative years. When her daughter would ask "who cares", Vicky's response is always "I care".
Children's Chapel Leader
Carl grew up in church. Every Sunday they were first for Sunday school, then sitting in the second pew for church. One of his fondest memories was being allowed to slide down the purple carpeted stairs from the upstairs room to the narthex. As kids they also played downstairs in the Sunday school hall on the stage and even behind the curtain, never being told that they couldn't.
The memories of having fun in church is what has shaped Carl's children's ministry for the last 25 years. All we are asked to do is plant seeds and the seeds Carl wans to plant are those of a joyful Lord; a Lord that listens, loves, and laughs.