John A. Appel was born in Fresno, California on August 20, 1945, to missionary parents. The family moved to China later that year. When the communist party took over China in 1948, they evacuated to Taiwan. Then on to Hong Kong, Bangkok (Thailand), Columbo (Ceylon, now Sri Lanka), and Poona (India). While John's parents were working in Bombay in 1957, he was baptized by his dad, Alva R. Appel. After Bombay they moved to Karmatar and then returned permanently to the US in 1959.
John attended John Nevins Andrews for 8th grade, Blue Mountain Academy for high school and then Columbia Union College, graduating in 1969. He changed his major from pre-med to theology while at CUC. After graduating from CUC, he went on to the Seminary at Andrews University.
He has served as youth pastor in Richmond (VA) and was a pastor in Manassas and Warrenton (VA). He was ordained in New Market (VA) in 1976, and then was the pastor of Sligo (MD), pastor of Atholton (MD), Associate Youth Director in the Oregon Conference, Chaplain and Bible Teacher at Forest Lake Academy (FL), pastor of Apopka Highland (FL) and pastor of Frederick (MD). In 2006, John became the Ministerial and Stewardship Director of the Chesapeake Conference.
John met Sally McKendrick at Blue Mountain Academy and they were married in 1969. They have three adult children (John Scott, Mark Allen, and Jennifer Lynn) and two grandchildren (JJ and Katelynn).
Pastor Bob, a native of New England, and a first generation Seventh-day Adventist, served as the senior pastor of the Patterson Avenue Church in Richmond, VA for 15 years, where he also planted a church in the West End of Richmond. He became a Seventh-day Adventist as a student at the University of Connecticut, where he received a BA in History. He later worked as a Bible instructor in southern New England and later completed his MDiv degree at Andrews University Seminary. He met his wife Joanie, from Memphis, Tennessee, while serving his first pastoral assignment in the north shore of Boston. After his next district in central Massachusetts he moved his family, including his son Timothy and daughter Emily, to Richmond. In 2000, he completed a doctorate from Andrews with emphasis on spiritual development. Bob enjoys hiking, biking and spending time with family and friends.
Dr. Handysides was born in the United Kingdom of a pastor's family in the 1940s, and was educated at Cape Town and Edinburgh Universities, graduating as a medical doctor. He then specialized in Pediatrics in Toronto and obtained the FRCPC degree, an academic teaching degree. He later specialized in Obstetrics and Gynecology, also at the University of Toronto; the qualification process had changed and he became a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in Obstetrics and Gynecology (a specialty certification, not a degree). He practiced in Toronto, teaching at the University Children's Hospital in Pediatrics and later OB/GYN. He also worked at the Branson Adventist Hospital.
Dr. Handysides served nearly eight years in Africa, as Medical Director at Maluti Adventist Hospital, and thereafter as the Director of Health ministry of the Trans-Africa Division, then the Eastern Africa Division. He then returned to practice at Branson, where he was head of OB/GYN. In 1998, he came to the General Conference as the Director of Health Ministry.
He has a wonderful wife, Janet, who is a registered nurse. His eldest son is Robert, an endodontist and head of Endodontics at the Loma Linda School of Dentistry. His daughter Elizabeth is an Anesthesiologist in Denver. His youngest son, Daniel, is expecting to graduate with his DrPH this June. All of Dr. Handysides' children are married with great spouses; he has 5 grandchildren.
Sedley Johnson, Sr. is the pastor of the Dundalk and Northeast Seventh-day Adventist Churches. A pioneering spirit, Sedley is known for nurturing church growth as well as starting congregations in uncharted areas. Pastor Johnson and his wife of forty years, Millicent, have four adult children and they firmly believe in building strong families, raising up Christ-centered homes, encouraging God's remnant church, and supporting effective church administration. Sedley will challenge you to break down the enemy's strongholds with the powerful weapons of our warfare (2 Corinthians 10:4).
Jerry Lutz, (pronounced loots) has been the Senior Pastor of the Spencerville church since 1996. He and his family moved to Maryland from central California, where he had served for six years as the senior pastor of the Hillcrest church in Bakersfield. A native Californian, Jerry attended Pacific Union College, where he earned a bachelor's degree in theology in 1977. After graduation he officially entered the gospel ministry in the Central California Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, though his calling to ministry, he says, came at a very early age.
After completing a ministerial internship in Visalia, CA, Jerry attended the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University, receiving a Master of Divinity degree in 1981. From there he returned to the Central California Conference to serve as senior pastor of three churches, before accepting the invitation to come to Spencerville. Jerry received his ordination in the Northwest Fresno Church in 1984.
Jerry and his wife, Janet, met while she was attending Andrews University and they were married in 1982. Jerry and Janet have one son, Jarrod, a student at Andrews University.
His passion for ministry lies in preaching, teaching, church administration and conducting personal Bible studies with new Christians and prospective members. He serves on the Chesapeake Conference Executive Committee and the conference personnel committee, and is active in various North American Division and General Conference projects and committees.
Jerry enjoys music, woodworking, cooking, tinkering with auto-mechanics, history of most any period, water sports and traveling. He also has a great appreciation for authentic Mexican and Chinese food.
Pastor Lutz's greatest desire in life is for Jesus to come soon.
Roosevelt A. Marsden has been the pastor of the Pikesville Seventh-day Adventist Church for the last 18 years. One of his passions is for equipping the saints to be happy citizens of the world to come and vibrant soul winners in this. This Jamaican-born minister is the proud father of three talented and beautiful daughters. He specializes in promoting family life, fostering good Christian accountability and ethics, and making faithful disciples. Unlike the hireling, this is a pastor who puts his soul into faithfully shepherding the flock he has been given. Pastor Marsden encourages men to walk in integrity and follow their priestly calling (1 Peter 2:9).
Rob became President of the Chesapeake Conference in December of 2005 after ten years serving as Conference Secretary, Ministerial Secretary, and Communication Director. Prior to the beginning of the administrative phase of his ministry, Rob was Senior Pastor of Chesapeake's largest church –the Spencerville Church – for a dozen years.
Born in Hinsdale, Illinois, Rob grew up in the Chicago area before moving to Denver, Colorado as a teenager. His parents worked at Adventist hospitals in both Hinsdale and Denver. He met his wife Judy at Union College in the early '70s. He holds degrees in theology from both Union College and Andrews University. He began his pastoral ministry in Denver in 1971 and served pastorates in Colorado and Minnesota before coming to Chesapeake in 1984.
Rob enjoys a round of golf when his schedule allows. Judy, when not working as a registered nurse in the short stay surgical unit at WashingtonAdventistHospital, loves to share her music ministry of singing while accompanying herself on a folk harp. Rob and Judy have two grown children. Their married daughter, Keri Tomenko, lives in Takoma Park, Maryland and teaches the violin. She and her husband, Deric, presented the Vandemans with their first grandchild, Nikolai, in July. Their son, Kevin, still lives at home while he pursues a master's degree in architecture at the University of Maryland.
Maryland Men of Faith believe that we must have an outward focus and seek ways we can benefit others. An offering is collected at each MMOF conference to help further God's work elsewhere. This year's offering will provide a new opportunity to reach out and help others. Come to the conference prepared to participate. You may also support the annual offering by donating online. More information about our annual offerings may be found here.