Coleman grew up in Bryn Athyn, PA, the second of six kids. At various times, he considered becoming a doctor, a lawyer, a football player, an actor, an English teacher, or a computer programmer. But during his third year of university, he felt a strong call to the ministry, and so after a semester at Kenyon College, he transferred back to Bryn Athyn College of the New Church to begin filling prerequisites for seminary. He completed his M. Div. program at the Academy of the New Church College, and was inaugurated into the priesthood of the New Church in May of 2009. His first assignment was as assistant to the pastor at the Olivet New Church in Toronto. After a year and a half in Toronto, Coleman was called to be the pastor of the Dawson Creek Church of the New Jerusalem in Dawson Creek, BC, and he moved out west in July of 2011. In December of that same year he was back in Toronto to attend the wedding of his friend Claire Sheldon, who was marrying a fellow named Andrew Hurd. It was there that he met…
Anne grew up the oldest of two in Ottawa, Canada. She lived in Japan briefly as a child and this began a life-long love affair with Asia. Originally planning to be a kindergarden teacher, or a trauma counsellor, Anne was introduced to the world of dance at the age of thirteen. From tap and jazz to ballet, she danced competitively throughout high school and attended York University in Toronto, where she double majored in dance (ballet, modern, Middle Eastern) and history (with a focus on East Asia). While she was in university, her parents became missionaries with OMF International and moved to Singapore. During her time at school, Anne became involved as a volunteer with an order of Catholic nuns, the Sisters of Life, and for several years seriously pursued a possible calling to join the Sisters and become a nun. As it turned out, that was not God’s plan! After graduating from university, Anne moved into an apartment in Toronto with her brother Andrew, and began working for Starbucks Coffee Company (despite not being a coffee drinker!) In the early summer of 2011, Andrew announced his intention to marry a lady named Claire Sheldon. Since it seemed she would lose her roommate, Anne called her parents to see if she could crash on their couch for awhile. In Singapore. They said ‘Sure’, and Anne made plans to return to Singapore with them in January 2012, after Claire and Andrew’s wedding.
On December 30th, 2011, at the wedding of Andrew Hurd and Claire Sheldon, Coleman and Anne met! (Check out ‘Our Love Story’ for the details of that night, and the time leading up to our wedding.) Exactly one year later, December 30, 2012, Coleman and Anne were married in Toronto, Ontario. (Check out ‘Wedding Details’ for archived wedding information pages, including all the crazy people who stood up with us.)
After our wedding we lived in Dawson Creek, BC, where Coleman was serving as the pastor at the Dawson Creek Church of the New Jerusalem, and Anne was learning to be a pastor’s wife. There we learned that we were expecting our first child, and in November of 2013 Samuel Robert was born. In June of 2014 we left Canada for South Africa after accepting a call to the Westville New Church in Durban, and out daughter Eleanor was born there in January of 2015.We’re hoping that this blog will allow us to keep family and friends updated on our adventures overseas!
In April of 2016 Anne was diagnosed with an advanced form of a rare cancer called NET cancer (Neuroendocrine tumour), sometimes called carcinoid cancer. For more information, check out our “Cancer” page. Our “Support Us” page has prayer requests and ways you can help us through this next chapter of our story. The blog will keep you posted with our updates.