People

Ben

Ben is our Pastor.

I grew up in the church, was baptized as a baby and have been learning to live with the Lord ever since. I met and married Megan while attending University of Florida. Together we moved to St. Louis while I attended Concorida seminary. We now have three beautiful kids and live in the SoDo area. We founded The Cross Orlando with a few friends in the fall of 2010. For us it’s been a lesson in the generosity of God, the fact that he’s drawn such a unique group of people together into a congregation that fits us so well feels like an extreme demonstration of his kindness. I’m proud to pastor such a great family and always hope to be able to authentically say, with St.Paul, follow me as I follow Christ.

Carole

Carole cares for our kids and some of our operational details.

Growing up with a sweet relationship with the Lord, I don’t remember a time without Him. My family is full of generations of faithfulness and I’m proud to carry that legacy into my own family. In 2004 I graduated from Bethany College of Missions in Minneapolis to pursue a career in ministry. Since then, the Lord brought me a North Carolina native husband Mike and two kids, Moses and Elie. Our family has taken a fabulous journey from a home in Raleigh, North Carolina to three years in Minnesota for Mike to finish his degree in Graphic Design and then finally to a wonderful home here in Orlando. We love our community at The Cross and enjoy watching our kids participate in a place that loves and cares for them. I find joy in teaching the children what it looks like to have faith in a God that we cannot see and to pass the stories of our people from Scripture on to them is something that can never be replaced. I am excited to see how their lives unfold with this sweet relationship that I see growing inside each of them.

Aaron

Aaron is one of our trustees. Guardians of the church's trust, they provide support and accountability to Ben; pray for the church family; and help in discerning the direction of the congregation.

I grew up on the gulf coast of Florida and went to University of Florida where I met my wife Michelle. We were married in 2002 and have been in Orlando ever since. Together we have a small counseling practice in downtown. Having grown up in the church, Jesus has been a central piece of my life for almost all I can remember. Faith and life have not always been easy roads in many ways, but I believe Jesus is the source of hope and life we were made for. We came to The Cross in 2013, and have found ourselves in deep friendships here, hoping to keep finding Jesus alongside folks who are doing the same.

Brandi Michelle

Brandi is one of our trustees. Guardians of the church's trust, they provide support and accountability to Ben; pray for the church family; and help in discerning the direction of the congregation.

I have known about the Lord for as long as my memories go back. God has been a staple of hope and restoration time and again in my life and I’ve seen those traits play out in people in all walks of life. I moved from South Carolina to Florida in 2003, and my husband Kirk and I started coming to the Cross in 2010. We have seen the Lord work through the people of the Cross to make Orlando a place where Jesus is the foundation of homes, businesses, and everyday life and we are so thankful to be apart of this family.

Zaileen

Zaileen is one of our trustees. Guardians of the church's trust, they provide support and accountability to Ben; pray for the church family; and help in discerning the direction of the congregation.

I was born and raised in the Orlando area and have enjoyed watching its culture blossom over the years. I met my husband here, and we live north of the city with our two kids. The traditions of the Church have always been a part of my life, but it wasn’t until adulthood that I started to understand my own relationship with God. After attending The Cross and engaging with people who are quietly doing God’s work in this community, I began to see the person of Jesus and his teachings differently, which renewed my faith in His love. I’ve enjoyed building friendships with other families, and I’m grateful for the authenticity and kindness found among this unique congregation.