The Rev. Christine Lee, Class of 2012, has been called as the new, fulltime, Priest-in-Charge at St. Peter’s Chelsea, New York. Lee is the first female priest-in-charge and the first Asian American priest in its history.
Most recently, Lee was vicar at All Angels Church, New York. She is currently a Doctor of Ministry student at Fuller Theological Seminary with a focus on leading organizational and congregational change. In September 2012, she became the first Korean American woman ordained as a priest in the Episcopal Church. Prior to that, she completed her Anglican studies at General and served on an interim basis at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church. She spent time working as a community organizer for Habitat for Humanity NYC and was formerly on staff at All Angels’ Church as the Director of Spiritual Development and Outreach.
Lee attended the Moody Bible Institute and received her Master of Divinity and Master of Theology from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, both in Chicago. She also served as a campus minister with Intervarsity Christian Fellowship at the University of Chicago and Columbia University. She lives in Harlem with her husband Jimmy Lee.
Familiarly known as St. Peter’s Chelsea, the church shares a long history with General Seminary. It was founded in the early 19th century by Clement Clarke Moore, author of A Visit from St. Nicholas, and one of our earliest professors. Both General and St. Peter’s were built on property donated by Moore. Rev. Lee will be formally commissioned at St. Peter’s Chelsea during a service to take place in January 2020.
Lee will be starting a new church vitalization program at St. Peter’s, including a Sunday School for kids, leadership training and other congregational development programs.
“I am looking forward to being a part of this new season in the life of St. Peter’s Chelsea,” said Lee. “I have been inspired by the leadership at St. Peter’s and their desire for the church to be a sign of life and hope. There is a lot of fear and anxiety in our world today, and sadly some of that has been caused in the name of God. Our desire is for St. Peter’s to be a place where all are welcome and can encounter the love of God in these challenging times.”
Ongoing building restoration work will continue at the church, which Lee will be involved in. She will also bring in a new group of members to join the current congregation.
“I am very excited and encouraged by St. Peter’s Chelsea in calling Christine Lee as their new priest,” said Reverend Allen K. Shin, Class of 1996, bishop suffragan of the Episcopal Diocese of New York. “With additional new members blended with the existing congregation, a new vision for mission and growth will emerge under Christine’s leadership. St. Peter’s as an incubator community for development and revitalization of other communities in the Diocese is a new paradigm that has not been tried before. This is truly an exciting new project in this Diocese.”