Rev. John Wilton, Lead Pastor
Lead Pastor at Birch Cove Baptist since 1997, Pastor John has a heart for authentic and growing relationship; relationship with God through His Son Jesus and relationship with one another as we live out His love.
Pastor John leads our pastoral team, regularly oversees our weekly worship services and presents messages firmly grounded in the Scriptures. He is involved in the pastoral care ministries of the church and is often called on for counsel.
Pastor John completed his undergraduate studies at Carleton University in Ottawa and went on to receive Master of Divinity at Acadia Divinity College in 1989. Prior to coming to Halifax he served in Prince Edward Island. Pastor John has been married for over 28 years to Lori, who is a Registered Nurse here in the city. They have three grown children, Mathew, Janna and Brad.
Rev. Tara Embrett, Associate Pastor of Christian Education
Pastor Tara has served with Birch Cove Baptist since 2010. She finds joy in helping others grow in their understanding of Jesus Christ and the Scriptures each week through Life Park (Sunday School) and children’s ministries. She oversees the other educational ministries such as our church library and Bible studies and loves to train and equip volunteers to serve Christ throughout the ministries in our church.
Andrew Sutherland, Associate Pastor of Youth
Pastor Andrew has served with Birch Cove Baptist since 2016. Andrew is passionate about the continually comforting and challenging good news of Jesus Christ, the intersection of faith and everyday life, and the joy of helping others to be always growing as followers of Jesus. Andrew is working weekly with youth and young adults as well as providing leadership for our Saturday evening worship gathering and contributing to our Sunday morning worship gathering.
Andrew is currently pursuing studies at Acadia Divinity College, where he is working on his Master of Divinity degree. Before moving to Halifax, Andrew lived in St. John’s, Newfoundland, where he completed his undergraduate studies at Memorial University. In 2015, Andrew graduated from the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University, received a call to ministry, and most importantly, married Karyn. Karyn works as a Radiation Therapist here in Halifax, and Andrew is thankful that he is able to share this incredible journey with an even more incredible partner!
Eileen Allen, Administrative Support
Eileen has been on Birch Cove Baptist’s support staff for more than 10 years, and has served as a volunteer in other areas, especially enjoying working with children and teens. Her primary role is providing administrative support to our staff, members, and various ministries within our church, as well as connecting with our local community.
She has been married to Paul for over 30 years, is a mom of 2 married children and is a grandparent!
Susan Levy, Custodian
Susan, with help from her husband Charlie, has been serving as custodian since 1996. She has enjoyed learning a great deal of “behind the scenes” work that has to be done, and considers it a privilege to be able to have “God’s House” ready for worship. She enjoys the work very much, and Charlie has stepped in since his retirement from work to help and take on more duties.
Susan’s role at the church is to clean all areas of the church and the office and keep these areas clean throughout the week, as well as to do summer and winter maintenance of the grounds outside. She works closely with our Administrative Assistant, keeping informed of activities and church usage. This may involve set up and tear down of areas for meetings if necessary as well.
Susan’s role at the church is very important, and she is so much appreciated!
Sheldon Crouse, Organist/Choir Director
Sheldon’s organ debut was on Christmas Eve in 1981 at the age of 15. He directed the carols service featuring a youth choir at Nictaux Baptist Church in the valley. Soon afterward, Sheldon accepted the position of Organist and Choir director of Nictaux Church–just one week before his 16th birthday. Sheldon continued in that role until moving to Halifax in 1985.
Over the years, Sheldon has played organ and directed choirs at Mulgrave Park, South End Dartmouth, and Bayers Road Baptist churches. Sheldon has also sung and performed with the Dartmouth Choral Society, Dal Chorale, Symphony Nova Scotia, and the Royal Canadian College of Organist Christmas choirs.
The greatest blessing for any church musician is to serve God’s people in the “home church”. Birch Cove has been the Crouses’ home since 2007, and Sheldon is thrilled to be home and serving God in this place at this time!