Meet Our Pastors
Rev. Michael Chamberlain
Interim Senior Pastor
Reverend Michael (Mike) Chamberlain is an ordained member of the Great Plains Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. He has served churches in rural and urban settings and worked in annual conference leadership, chairing both the Conference Camping Committee and the Conference Board of Ordained Ministry. His last pastoral appointment was Senior Pastor of First United Methodist Church in Topeka where he also served four terms as Chaplain of the Kansas House of Representative. In 2007 he was appointed to be District Superintendent of the Kansas City District and served there until his retirement in 2015. During his final two years he was Dean of the newly formed Great Plains Annual Conference cabinet.
Prior to his ordination, Reverend Chamberlain completed a career of over twenty-one years as an officer in the US Army retiring as a lieutenant colonel. While in the military he had numerous command, staff, and flight assignments in Europe, SE Asia, and the United States.
Reverend Chamberlain received his B.S. degree from Our Lady of the Lake University, San Antonio, TX and an MDiv from Perkins School of Theology at SMU in Dallas. His spouse, Judith (Judy), is a former Kansas school teacher and administrator now retired. They have two children: Robert, an Army officer serving in the Washington, D.C. area, and Lisa, a Human Resource Manager living and working in Liverpool, UK.
Following retirement, Reverend and Mrs. Chamberlain and their English and American cocker spaniels spent a year of decompression living in a village in the Black Forest in southwestern Germany, hiking in the forest and traveling throughout Europe. They now live in Crofton, Maryland.
Rev. Frances Stewart
Minister of Congregational Care
Rev. Stewart is a native of Covington, Virginia, who grew up in the Baptist Church, but became a United Methodist when she joined Goshen UMC in Gaithersburg, Maryland, in 1983. She received the call to ministry while serving in leadership at Goshen. Rev. Stewart is a 2008 graduate of the Local Pastor Course of Study School at Wesley Theological Seminary. She was elected as an Associate Member of the Baltimore-Washington Conference in 2010.
Rev. Stewart was first appointed to serve as a part-time local pastor at Elijah UMC in Poolesville, Maryland. She served as pastor of Friendship United Methodist Church in the Damascus-Friendship Charge in Damascus, Maryland, for 14 years. From 2000 to 2006, she was the full- time Youth and Family Ministries Pastor at Damascus UMC, while maintaining her lead pastoral responsibilities to Friendship Church.
Rev. Stewart was appointed to serve as full-time pastor to Metropolitan UMC in Severn, Maryland, in July, 2011. She led the congregation in developing a new vision and mission focus, and has done training on spiritual gifts, caring for inactive members, and new member classes. Rev. Stewart has organized and directed many retreats for youth and for women.
Reverend Stewart has served on several Volunteers in Mission (VIM) teams to support communities in Nicaragua, Costa Rica, New Orleans (after Hurricane Katrina), and South Africa. She is a Stephen Ministry Leader and serves on the Commission on the Status and Role of Women (COSROW) for the Baltimore-Washington Conference. She has also received training in bereavement support through Montgomery Hospice. Rev. Stewart is single, and the mother of four children and seven grandchildren. She enjoys traveling, going to the beach, taking nature walks, and playing Scrabble® and Words with Friends®.
Rev. Janet Craswell
Director of Christian Education
As Director of Christian Education at National UMC, Janet is responsible for overseeing learning programs for all ages, preschool through adult. She is an ordained United Methodist Deacon, and the former Chair of the Order of Deacons of the Baltimore-Washington Conference.
Previously, Janet served as Minister of Spiritual Formation at Salem UMC in Brookeville, Maryland. Before entering ministry, Janet worked in the field of international development studies as an academic journal editor and an anti-apartheid activist. Janet is excited about Christian education and spiritual formation as tools to equip Christians to live out our faith in the world. She especially enjoys storytelling and play-filled, imaginative ways of sharing the Gospel with children and adults.
Born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, Janet has lived in the DC metro area since 1985. She has a BA in Political Science and German from the University of Puget Sound, an MA in International Relations/African Studies from Johns Hopkins University, and an MA in Theology from Wesley Theological Seminary. She lives in Rockville, Maryland, with her husband, Gene Beye. They have two young adult sons, David and Noah.