The Rev. Jen Fulton

Faith Community: St. John of the Cross (Bristol, Ind.)

Hometown: I was born in Richland Center, Wisconsin and raise in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

Who does your immediate family consist of?: I have been married for 25 years this June to my husband, Brad. We have two children: Alex (16) and Leta (14). Our family also has four pets: Shannon the dog, Acorn the guinea pig, Baloo the hamster, and Rocky the bearded dragon.

In what ministries do you participate?: I am the Priest-in-Charge.

What’s God been teaching you recently? God has been trying to show me that I care way too much about what people think of me. I can be a bit stiff-necked in that regard, always arguing with God that being likeable is a good evangelism tool. God’s not buying it, and is always pointing out things like that people hated the prophets and that Jesus wasn’t universally liked and that John the Baptist was always talking about burning the chaff with unquenchable fire. So I’m working on finding the right balance and then living into it. The exercise of filling out this community spotlight questionnaire is probably not helping that struggle! 

What was your first job? I was the cleaning crew for a small dental office. The dentists (father and son) went to my church and knew my parents, so they were willing to hire a 15-year-old me to clean their toilets, wash their sinks, vacuum their rugs, and mop and wax their floors. You might wonder what I learned from this experience. I learned that a small mercury spill is a big deal. Never spill mercury, literally or metaphorically. 

What’s your favorite book? I’m supposed to say the Bible, aren’t I? OK, I will say that, but as a former English teacher, I also know that the world is full of too many wonderful books to read in a lifetime. At the moment, I am totally loving Louise Penny’s Three Pines and Armand Gamache books. I can’t choose one. Read them all, and in order. They are simply wonderful.

What are your hobbies? I love to read, and I love walking, hiking, and camping. My family also plays Dungeons and Dragons together. My husband is the Dungeon Master, and the kids and I have two characters each. We are currently trying to break up a slave trade operation, and Redgar (my fighter) and Bella (my cleric) are enjoying the challenge.

What was your childhood ambition? During middle school and the first part of high school, whenever anyone asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would say, “A famous poet.” Catch the humility there; I was not only going to be a poet, but a famouspoet! Then in 11thgrade English class, Sr. Virginia Handrup had my class read and interpret Keats’ Ode to a Grecian Urn, and I was stunned by the depth and complexity of the poem. That was followed by a whole host of wonderfully written poems, and by the time we finished our poetry unit, I knew that I would never be a famous poet, or much of a poet at all, really. These days, I content myself with writing an occasional theological haiku.