The Harlem Valley Ministry is pleased to welcome the Rev. Juan Francisco Perez, Jr. as its new Priest-in-Charge effective September 1, 2017. The Ministry is made up of Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Pawling, St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Brewster, and MESA in Dover Plains, which stands for Mision Episcopal Santiago Apostol /St. James’s Episcopal Mission.
Father Juan will bring his vitality, cultural heritage, and passion to his ministry role and plans to foster outreach to all members in the community and offer opportunities to foster hope not just on Sundays but in their daily lives.
Father Juan was born in the South Bronx in New York City, raised Roman Catholic, and received into the Episcopal Church as an adult in 1998. He was ordained to the priesthood in the Dioceses of Michigan in June 2014. He served his Curacy at St. Stephen’s, Troy, MI, and also served as co-founder of La Iglesia Detroit and as a Curate Missioner for Hispanic Ministry in the Diocese of Michigan.
Before discerning a call to ordained ministry, Father Juan was employed as a social worker in various clinical and academic settings in New York and Michigan. He moved from the Bronx to Detroit in 2001, and most recently lived in Berkley, MI, with his husband, Joe Cloutier, and their three standard Schnauzers, Maggie, Lazarus, and Jaeger.
Father Juan earned his Master of Divinity degree from Bexley-Seabury Seminary in Ohio, holds a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor’s degree in Peace Studies from Manhattan College.
Holy Trinity Episcopal Church, located on Coulter Avenue, was founded in Pawling in 1910 as an offshoot of Christ Church in Patterson. It incorporated as a separate parish in 1956. Services are at 10 a.m. on Sundays. It is home to Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and classes in English as a Second Language.