Adapted from the newsletter From the Field: News & Events of the Church in Georgia

The Diocese of Georgia has received a $100,000 grant to establish a new ministry in Savannah. The Rev. Kelly Steele will lead an effort among young adults of college- and post-college ages.

“In the last several years we have witnessed a hunger among young adults to learn more about and experience Christ’s transformational love, grace, and forgiveness,” said the Rt. Rev. Scott A. Benhase, Bishop of Georgia. “This grant will allow us to reach those most in need of this gospel message, especially many young adults who have heretofore shunned organized religion and its institutions.”

A 2015 summa cum laude graduate of Duke Divinity School and a 2012 summa cum laude graduate of Duquesne University, Steele calls herself a priest “in the wild” and “an investigator for Jesus” looking to connect with and learn from church-avoidant people.

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She is involved in Emergent Savannah (“a collaboration of local activists who believe that Savannah is capable of evolving into a more intentional community, empowered to create its own future, while continuing to honor its past”) and Chatham-Savannah Citizen Advocacy, which “recruits, matches and offers support to over 110 local citizens in voluntary citizen advocacy relationships.”

Steele plays roller derby as a way to connect with other young women. Along with her husband, the Rev. Guillermo Arboleda (priest-in-charge at St. Matthew’s, Savannah), she was ordained to the priesthood in May at Christ Church, Savannah.

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