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The Raymond Trust & Fellows

The Raymond Trust

The Raymond Trust was given to our church in 1883 by Deacon William E. Raymond, a local businessman and committed member of The Congregational Church of New Canaan. The purpose of the gift was to make sure the Gospel of Jesus Christ was preached in underserved communities in Connecticut.  In years past, the church would employ a full-time “Raymond Minister” to serve a local congregation in a time of transition or acute pastoral need.  Thanks to the efforts of the Trustees of the endowment, “Raymond Fellows” can be preaching at multiple churches on any given week throughout the state.  The mission envisioned by Deacon Raymond lives on in a new and dynamic way, that allows seminarians to continue to grow and develop as preachers, while sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ more expansively than ever before. 

The Raymond Fellows

The Raymond Trustees offer $12,000 preaching fellowships to several Yale Divinity School students each year. Raymond Fellows commit to a more rigorous study of preaching as a pastoral discipline. Fellows then go out to preach at churches needing pulpit supply in Connecticut, free of charge throughout the academic year.
For more information about this ministry, to apply for a Raymond Preaching Fellowship, or to request a Raymond Fellow to offer pulpit supply at your church, please contact Laurel Carr at

Ten Rules for Effective Preaching

A good sermon is a work of art, and this brief instructional video will assist both the aspiring and seasoned preacher to further enhance their craft. 

Natalie Owens-Pike

M.Div ’23, Yale Divinity School

Raised in Minneapolis, MN, Natalie and her husband Alex moved to New Haven this August to begin her path to UCC ministry at Yale Divinity School. Natalie was raised Unitarian Universalist and found belonging in the UCC after college. After graduating from Macalester College in 2011, Natalie became a teacher in rural Mississippi through the Teach for America program. She has worked for equity in education ever since, in both independent and public schools. She was most recently Executive Director of the Breakthrough Collaborative program in Minneapolis, providing academic enrichment for Minneapolis Public School students. While a member at Mayflower Church – Minneapolis, Natalie was a member of their Church Council and an Associate Minister Search Committee, a co-facilitator of the Mayflower Young Adults group, and a frequent summer guest preacher. Ministry has been on her heart for a long time, and her call to ministry is rooted in preaching. She loves to be a part of worship to proclaim what God is still speaking to us! She also loves to sing, cook, swim and canoe!

Terrance McQueen

Terrance McQueen

M.Div ’24, Second Year, Yale Divinity School

A native of Fort Pierce, FL, Terrance is a first-year Master of Divinity student at Yale Divinity School in partnership with Yale’s Institute of Sacred Music. He was ordained as an Elder in the Church of God in Christ in 2016, despite giving his first sermon at the age of eight, following in the footsteps of his grandpa and father. He currently works as an associate with the Office of Institutional Equity, Accessibility, and Belonging at Yale University and a Publications Assistant at Yale’s Institute of Sacred Music. Terrance also serves on the Student Government at Yale Divinity School and the Student Life Committee at the Institute of Sacred Music. Terrance is a graduate of Morehouse College where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology. Most recently, Terrance earned his Master of Arts degree in Higher Education with an emphasis in diversity and social justice at the University of Michigan. His interests lie at the intersections of sociology, education, and theology through the lenses of queer and disability studies. He is a Gates Millennium, Horatio Alger Scholar, and now, a Raymond Preaching Fellow. Terrance has held internships with Breakthrough Collaborative, the Southern Education Foundation, Ross School of Business, and the Center for Engineering Diversity and Outreach at the University of Michigan’s College of Engineering. Terrance attributes his success to his parents, hometown, and faith in God.

Kelly Leather Antonson

M.Div, First Year, Yale Divinity School

A native of New Jersey, Kelly presently is presently living in New Canaan and works as the Senior Youth Director for The Congregational Church of New Canaan. Kelly graduated from Sacred Heart University in Fairfield in 2011, where she led a number of service programs, served as Student Body President and also became involved in The Congregational Church of New Canaan. Upon graduation, Kelly was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to Albania to pilot a program using e-readers in the Albanian schools. Since returning home in 2012, Kelly has worked in fundraising, first for Habitat for Humanity of Coastal Fairfield County and most recently for Inspirica Inc. in Stamford. Along with her duties at the church, she is attending Yale Divinity School as a first year student.