O ble wyt ti’n dod?

Many years ago, I worked at a popular retail store where the norm was for all employees to wear name tags. One day, one of the customers whose needs I was attending to noticed my first name, Ketlen (pronounced as it looks) and became very excited. This customer, who was from Wales, made a point of telling me that my name was Welsh, and at the end of our conversation she happily exclaimed: “Madam, you are Welsh!” I could not help but be amused by her genuine and enthusiastic affirmation.

I was born and raised for the first sixteen years of my life in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. While my family can claim a rich mix of European and African ethnic and cultural heritage, I was not aware of any familial connection to Wales. Nonetheless, I was tickled about my newly-given “Welsh identity” which I have learned to joyfully embrace.

In addition to being from Haiti I also hail from Northern Virginia where I have lived ever since I moved from Haiti. In terms of ordained ministry, I studied at the Virginia Theological Seminary (VTS), class of 2005, and I have served as Associate Rector at St. Luke’s, Alexandria for over nine years. I am currently a candidate for the Doctor in Ministry at VTS. My husband Scott and I both studied music in college. He is a composer and pianist in the classical tradition and has written a number of commissioned works. One of his most recent pieces, Sonata di Gloria for two violins and piano is being premiered in Reston, Virginia on October 2. We both enjoy going to concerts, reading, and absorbing the beauty of nature.

I am humbled and excited to be called as Covenant Rector of the Brandywine Collaborative Ministries. I am looking forward to being a part of this exciting partnership and I admire the vision and commitment of the people of Ascension, Calvary, and Grace. Together we are embarking on a great new venture, and I am convinced that, with God’s blessing and help, a bright future lies ahead. I am grateful for the warm welcome that I have enjoyed from the members of the Search Committee and of the BCM Council, as well as from Bishop Wright, Canon Gary Rowe, and several members of the diocesan staff.

By the way, the title of this article asks the question, “Where are you from?” in Welsh. Don’t ask me how to pronounce it!