Meet the team

Lauren Michelle Stevens

Lauren Michelle (She/Her)
Lauren Michelle was born and raised in the Bay Area. She grew up in Sunnyvale and attended Good Samaritan UMC in Cupertino. As a youth and young adult she was active within conference camps, attending as a camper and later working on staff.
She moved to Moraga to attend St. Mary’s College of California, which offered her the opportunity to study abroad in Ireland, England, and the Turks and Caicos Islands, and she received a BA in Environmental Studies in 2012.
After graduation, she returned to Ireland for a year and then, upon her return to the United States, served as Director of Student Ministries at Community UMC in Half Moon Bay. Her time as Director of Student Ministries led her to desire further theological education and she moved to Washington DC in 2015 to attend Wesley Theological Seminary.
During her time at seminary, she also worked for Wesley’s field education office, served as a pediatric hospital chaplain intern at Children’s National Medical Center, and ministered to children and youth at Trinity UMC in McLean, VA.
She received her M.Div. from Wesley Theological Seminary in 2018. After seminary, she completed a year-long Clinical Pastoral Education chaplain residency at Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans, LA, and then moved back to the Bay Area and served as Next Gen Ministry Director at Embrace Church in Alameda.
In July of 2020, Lauren Michelle was appointed to Redding UMC as their Associate Pastor.
Her favorite book of the Bible is anything by Paul but specifically the Letter to the Romans (or the Book of Judith in the Apocrypha). Although Paul’s writings often get a bad rap, she enjoys delving into the context of his letters and sitting with some of the biblical language intricacies, exploring what Paul’s understanding of the Good News offers those on the margins.
When not working she loves watching FRIENDS, hanging out with her two dogs (Remmy and Buford) and two birds (Sierra and Lucky), eating ice cream, reading, and spending time near (or in) the ocean.

Greg Zema

Director of Music
Greg Zema is honored to be director of music at LUMC! Born and raised in the Bay Area, he’s been playing music professionally since 10th grade. He hopes to continue to grow the music ministry and choir program here and when he’s not leading the choir you might find him in various theatrical productions or other musical ventures or binging on a favorite TV show.

Carol Carter

Joyful Beginnings Preschool Director
Carol Carter earned her Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Development from California State University, Sacramento in the 1980s. She returned to school in 2009 and earned a Master of Science in 2010 from California State University, East Bay in Education with a Curriculum Option. Throughout her career in Early Childhood Education she has attended countless conferences, workshops, and earned a variety of certificates in the field. Carol is an enthusiastic lifelong learner of Early Childhood Education. She currently teaches courses in Early Childhood Education at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg.
She is a wife and mother, married for 25 years, and has two grown daughters. Rachel graduated from SDSU in 2015 and Hannah is currently attending college in Oregon. She and her husband have been enjoying their “empty nest” and have taken up a couple of new hobbies…including kayaking!
Carol looks forward to meeting you and showing you around our school!

Sarah Jayne Schmidt

Office Administrator
We are thrilled to welcome Sarah Jayne as our new Office Administrative Assistant! She offers gracious hospitality to all who visit our church campus.  As a hub of the church, her administrative leadership undergirds all the ministries of the church.  She coordinates the facility calendar for all organizations using the campus, maintains the church records, and supports our ministries, committees, volunteers and parishioners in a myriad of ways.
 When not working hard to ensure the church functions smoothly, she can be found engaging in a multitude of hobbies, crafts, and passions including beekeeping, cooking, archery, beadwork, gardening, camping, embroidery, calligraphy, reading, and drawing just to name a few!

Stop by the office sometime to check out her many carnivorous plants.