Meet Our New Youth Coordinator, Megan-Drew Benfield

Christine Mortlock recently sat down with our new part-time youth coordinator, Megan-Drew Benfield, and peppered her with a zillion questions so St. John’s could get to know her a bit better! A testament to Megan-Drew’s great personality, she was up for this inquiry blitz. Megan-Drew coordinates the middle school and high school youth groups, including its regular meetings, the youth mission trips, and ski trips. Her email is mdbenfield@stjohnsroanoke.org. Please reach out to Megan-Drew and welcome her to St. John’s! We are so fortunate to welcome her aboard.

What brought you to Roanoke?

My husband is a resident in internal medicine at Carilion. We moved to Roanoke and got married here in May of last year. I have really enjoyed getting to explore the Greenway. I usually stop off at Blue Cow on my way home!

What is a fun fact about your wedding?

I baked my wedding cake. I baked a vanilla cake with lemon curd and butter cream icing. We are going to have the frozen slice on our honeymoon at the end of April.

When did you get involved in church?

I started going when I was 12 in Newport News, Virginia, where I am from. My Dad was hired to sing in the church choir. My Dad wanted me to know what it was about, and I started liking it. I started taking Rite-13 classes and I got baptized on Easter. Eventually I was a student representative on the vestry in high school and attended annual conferences for the diocese as a page.

After high school, Megan-Drew attended the University of Virginia where she majored in drama. She later earned a Master of Arts in communications with a certificate in nonprofit management from Johns Hopkins University.

How did you choose UVA?

My parents met there, so I was kind of bred to bleed orange and blue. I really loved the year I lived in the Canterbury House, the Episcopal student fellowship. We got to meet the presiding bishop when she visited the school during the snowpocalypse. It was an opportunity to be a student leader and more deeply explore my faith. We did Bible studies, participated in Christian history lectures, had interfaith experiences, and volunteered. The house was only six of us, but the fellowship was as big as 20 while I was there. I was also a member of vestry at St. Paul’s Memorial in Charlottesville as student representative.

Have you worked at a church before? What did you do?

Yes, I was the office manager/program support at Hilton Presbyterian Church. I’ve also worked in two diocesan offices and for an Episcopal non-profit Boys Home of Virginia.

What did you like working for the church?

It’s an opportunity to directly live out my call.

What is your vision for youth at St. John’s?

I would like to continue growing a faith community where student leaders and student passions are recognized and celebrated.

What’s your favorite Broadway show?

Into the Woods. I’ve done it three times and my parents did it a fourth. My parents did it when I was in sixth grade, I did it when it when I was in eighth and eleventh grades, and then again in my third year of college. In eighth and eleventh grades I was the Witch. In college, I was hair and makeup.

What three items would you take to a deserted island?

My phone, it has all the apps (Bible, books, etc.)  my knitting (I’m counting that as one item), a utility knife.

What are you knitting now?

I am knitting a D&D-themed cardigan. It has polyhedral dice all over it.

 

In addition to these questions, Megan-Drew answered a whirlwind of fun rapid fire either/or questions dug up on marshalljonesjr.com

 

Coffee or tea?

Caffeine-free of either one.

  1. Books or movies?

That’s a hard one. Skip!

  1. Introvert or extrovert?

Both—ambivert.

  1. Cake or pie?

Cake! [Said emphatically.]

  1. Sweet pickles or dill pickles?

Dill. I like making my own! [MD generously shares recipe with Chrissy.]

  1. Jazz or classical?

Broadway.

  1. Dancing or singing?

Singing. I have two left feet!

  1. Board games or video games?

I like them both. I love Legends of Zelda and Pokémon.

  1. Baseball or basketball?

Oof. Neither. I am so bad at “sportball.”  

  1. Crossword puzzles or sudokus?

Crossword puzzles. My husband and I do crossword puzzles together.

  1. Sausage or bacon?

All breakfast meats.

  1. Dark chocolate or white chocolate?

Dark. White chocolate isn’t chocolate.

  1. Star Wars or Star Trek?

My heart. [Megan-Drew moves her hand to her heart.] I love them both. I’m a bad Trekkie but I love them both. [Chrissy went on to ask who her favorite Star Trek character.] You are making me choose between my children. [Finally, Megan-Drew concedes] Captain Janeway. She is kind and strong and committed to her mission and her crew.

  1. Washing dishes or doing laundry?

Laundry. Doing dishes is my least favorite chore.

  1. Snakes or sharks?

NO. Just no. No, thank you!

  1. Oreos or Chips Ahoy?

Oreos. I eat the cream first from the double stuffed ones.

  1. Jello or pudding?

Neither. I don’t like squishy.

  1. Bagels or muffins?

Bagels. Especially bagels from Bodo, that’s in Charlottesville.

  1. Whole wheat bread or white?

Whole wheat except for fried bologna sandwiches. Those MUST be on white bread.

 

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