Reverend Amelia Stinson-Wesley was ordained in the United Methodist Church in 1992. A graduate of Meredith College and Duke University, she has pastored several churches in North Carolina and been the executive director of a battered women’s shelter and rape crisis center. She has lived in Cambodia and Australia and is the founder of two nonprofits. She has taught and lectured on the topic of violence against women and children for more than 25 years in both the United States as well as across South and Southeast Asia, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. An expert on the subject of clergy sexual misconduct and the intersection of faith and interpersonal violence, she has written books and articles about violence against women, has addressed national and international conferences, and has advised judicatories in several denominations including the United Methodist Church, The Uniting Church of Australia, and The Methodist Church of New Zealand.
Rev. Stinson-Wesley is active in the East Charlotte Faith and Nonprofit Leaders group and is the clergy representative on the Mecklenburg County Task Force on Emergency Shelter. She is passionate about ministry related to housing instability, food insecurity, and the pastoral care of women. Rev. Stinson-Wesley is married to another United Methodist pastor, and they have two children in high school and college.
Rev. Stinson-Wesley serves as an elected representative on the Pineville Town Council, and she serves as a governor-appointed member of the NC Human Relations Commission. She is a representative of the Towns in Mecklenburg County on the Centralina Regional Council of Governments. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the President James K. Polk Site in Pineville, and she is a member of the governing board of the NC Council of Churches.
Reverend Eric Lanier is a Retired Licensed Local Pastor who is serving as Memorial’s Assistant Pastor. He holds a Master of Arts Degree from Appalachian State University and a Master of Divinity Degree from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary.
Rev. Lanier previously served for twelve years as an Assistant Pastor at Pineville United Methodist Church where he taught Sunday School weekly, preached periodically, directed the ministry for homebound members, led the Stephen Ministry Program and recruited and trained new Stephen Ministers, coordinated and led the worship services at the Dorchester Independent Living Center in Pineville, and assisted with the Pineville United Methodist Men’s meetings and programs.
At Memorial, Rev. Lanier assists with visitation of the sick and homebound, regularly teaches Sunday School, and preaches periodically. He is very grateful to be able to serve in this capacity in his retirement.
Eric has been married to his wife Melanie for 44 years. They have two grown children, one granddaughter and another on the way!
Sandy's church music career began in 1979, as Pianist at Wilson Grove Baptist in Charlotte. She was 15 years old at the time, and was thrilled to be a working musician. Over the years, she has continued as Organist, Pianist, or Music Director at several churches in the area, including Mulberry Baptist, Hickory Grove Baptist, Mallard Creek Presbyterian, and Quail Hollow Presbyterian.
Her education of several years of piano, organ, and voice lessons, culminated with Church Music studies at Wingate University. She studied organ under Dr. Martha Asti and Dr. Andre Lash. Eventually, she became a piano and voice teacher, working with many talented students for 15 years.
As a church musician, she has worked with adult choirs, children and youth choirs, handbells, and orchestra. Under her direction, the Memorial UMC Chancel Choir was invited to perform at Carnegie Hall.
Currently, she prefers to focus on organ and piano, and she's learning ukulele as well. Her hobbies include knitting, crochet, weaving, sewing, embroidery, puzzles, reading, and writing. She has 3 grown sons, and two daughters-in-law. If you're on Facebook, you'll find her there as "Shandeh".
A person who we can't do without is our wonderful accountant Yvette Cianci. She works diligently keeping our records and numbers straight and everything in the church moving forward. She is a delightful presence in our church office and has done great work at Memorial and other churches in the community through the years. In addition to the large work load at church, Yvette also serves as an EA with Cummins Tax Service and handles taxes for many individuals in the community.