Our Pastors

The Reverend John Gropp

While attending Slippery Rock University, I met my wife, Colleen, whom I married during my second year at Gettysburg Seminary, where I actively participated in the Luther House of Studies, taking courses in many of the Washington D.C. area and other schools of theology. Following our marriage in March of 1974, we began a 2-year concurrent internship in the Armstrong, Indiana, and Jefferson county’s (AIJ Town and Country Cooperative Ministry). During the internship, I commuted to Washington D.C. one day a week to attend courses there and complete my academic studies while serving the parishes of AIJ (At one time there were 21 parishes in AIJ from Avonmore near Apollo, to Brookville, and Dubois, to Brush Valley and Coral near Blairsville, just to mention the outside perimeter of the area served). In case some think what we are doing in PLUM is tough or crazy, many of the congregations we served in AIJ have stabilized their ministries and are still faithfully serving their communities today. 



The Reverend Brenda Henry

I am the proud mother of two.  My daughter, a graduate of LaSalle University (2019), resides in Philadelphia. My son is a graduate of Thiel College (2020).  We relocated to Pittsburgh in 2004, from Michigan, and have made it our home.  My younger sister, ‘my first’ child, also lives here in Pittsburgh. 


My faith has been shaped through an ecumenical journey. Born and raised in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, I was baptized and confirmed as a Moravian.  I spent my young adult years as a member of a UCC congregation in Lansing, Michigan.  While living in Pittsburgh, I had been a Baptist, until April 2017, when I joined Hope Lutheran Church of Forest Hills.  I have served as Sunday school teacher for youth and adults, Church Secretary and Administrative Assistant to the Pastor, choir member and council member. 


My first vocation was social work, which I did for 20 years.  I received both my undergraduate (1990) and Master of Social Work (1992) degrees from Michigan State University.  I earned my Master of Divinity degree in 2017, from the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.  I served as an Intern with PLUM as part of my Lutheran training.  I have come to appreciate how ministry intersects secular space and congregations, thus allowing me to see how both of my vocations are an unfolding part of God’s plan for me.  By the grace of God, and the support of the church, I was ordained on November 3, 2019 as a Minister of Word and Sacrament.


In service together with the congregations of PLUM we are discovering and participating in what God is up to in our communities and our world.



The Reverend Doctor Paul Koch (Pastor Emeritus)

I graduated seminary with a M.Div.; ordained August 9, 1970; earned a D. Min. degree in 2003; after 39 years of full-time pastoral ministry, I retired to Pittsburgh from Chicago. Married to Sharon with two son, one of which lives in Ingram, PA; the other son is a saxophone player with the USAF Concert Band, D.C. Working part time with PLUM; primary ministry is on Sunday morning, leading worship and preaching, preparing Bible Study materials for the PLUM pastors, teaching one class a week on Tuesday mornings, and working on a variety of PLUM projects.