Mary K. Briggs, an alumna of Emory & Henry College (’86), returned to the College in 2008 to care for the spiritual needs of the campus as College Chaplain. After earning a Master of Divinity from The Divinity School of Duke University (’95), Mary K. went on to serve in the communities surrounding E&H as a congregational pastor for 13 years with United Methodist Churches in the Holston Conference. During this period, she provided extensive pastoral care through worship, spiritual counseling, crisis care, home and hospital visits, weddings, pre-wedding counseling, and funerals.
She has completed training in Clinical Pastoral Education and a series of classes on Family Systems. She also has experience creating and presenting interactive curriculum for congregants of all ages.
A key attribute of Mary K.’s ministerial philosophy is that of service leadership. Mary K. applies this philosophy to the programming at Emory & Henry College through mission trip planning each year; bringing students into all phases of planning for worship, projects and events; and encouraging students to take a hands-on approach to their faith.
She served as a founding member of Loaves & Fishes Food Pantry Board of Directors and went on to direct the daily operations of the Pantry; led the process of developing and implementing the Congregational Care Ministry at first United Methodist Church in Marion, VA; and planned and led mission projects in the region as well as participated in mission teams to Estonia, the Czech Republic and most recently to the Dominican Republic.
Chaplain Briggs currently teaches Introduction to Christian Faith at Emory & Henry College as well as serving as advisor to students planning to attend seminary or work in church-related vocations.