The Rev. Celeste Kennel-Shank is a bi-vocational pastor and award-winning journalist. She is president of the Associated Church Press and a contributing editor of the Christian Century magazine. Her work has also been published in Sojourners, Faith and Leadership, and the Washington Post, among other publications.

Raised in an ecumenical worshiping community in Washington, D.C., she is now ordained in Mennonite Church USA. She co-leads a garden ministry, New Horizons Garden, in East Garfield Park on the West Side of Chicago (above). She volunteers as a chaplain to people who are hospitalized and people who are incarcerated.

She is married to Josiah A. Groff and in their free time they enjoy exploring parks and Chicago neighborhoods with their dog, Grendel.


University of Chicago Divinity School

Master of Divinity 2013

Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern University

Master of Science in Journalism 2007

Goshen College

Bachelor of Arts in environmental studies 2004

D.C. Public Schools

Pre-kindergarten through high school diploma 2001