Kendrick (Rick) Sullivan is a Global Mission Fellow of the United Methodist General Board of Global Ministries, serving for two years with American University in Washington, DC. He was commissioned in August 2016.
The Global Mission Fellows program takes young adults ages 20-30 out of their home environments and places them in new contexts for mission experience and service. The program has a strong emphasis on faith and justice. Global Mission Fellows become active parts of their new local communities. They connect the church in mission across cultural and geographical boundaries. They grow in personal and social holiness and become strong young leaders working to build just communities in a peaceful world.
Global Mission Fellows in the United States work through geographic or organizational affiliates, such as annual conferences, districts, or institutions. While Rick’s assignment is in the District of Columbia, it is related to the Global Mission Fellows program of the Virginia Annual Conference, which adjoins Washington.
Rick works directly with students through various campus ministries, in a sponsoring partnership with the United Methodist chaplaincy at American University and Metropolitan Memorial Church, which is a multi-site United Methodist community engaged in social services on three campuses: American University, George Washington University, and Georgetown University.
Rick is from Delaware, where he is a member of the Newark United Methodist Church in Newark, the city where he also earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in languages from the University of Delaware. He studied Italian, Chinese, and Arabic. He holds a Master of Divinity degree from Duke University Divinity School, Durham, North Carolina. He held several internships while at Duke, including one at the Raleigh Wesley Foundation.
As a young child, Rick attended Roman Catholic Mass with his father, but as a teenager became involved with the youth group at Newark United Methodist Church, though not very regularly, he says. He found his way back to the church in college because Newark UMC houses the Wesley Foundation, serving the University of Delaware. It was through Wesley that he began to hear a call to ministry.
“My call to mission has developed out of my call to ministry,” Rick says. “I am called to be present and through my presence to serve as a reminder of God’s own presence. This brings me into contact with people who are often pushed aside because they are different, or because they make others feel uncomfortable, or because they don‘t belong. It is through building relationships with people who society says are different but who God claims that I become better able to accept God’s presence and love in my own life.”
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