This week came as a surprise for Rev. Jackie Kirby as she received the news of her appointment as the new chaplain for St. Georges School. The Middletown school which was founded over 120 years ago has never had a female chaplain, and just last year welcomed its first female head of school Alixe Callen. On receiving the good news, Rev. Jacky who will now serve as the school’s top religious leader said that she was humbled and honored to serve in the new position. Before being appointed as the new chaplain, Kirby served as an associate chaplain of the school. She will be formally installed into the new post on Thursday, Jan 2018.
“While at the divinity school at Yale, I always dreamed of working at St. Georges. I had always heard about the good things about the school such as the warmth environment, academic excellence and the expectations of parents for their students to succeed. I just felt that I should be part of that family” said Kirby who is 51 years old.
Jacky Kirby was born and raised outside Baltimore. She says that her religious experience has not been by chance. She admits that growing up in an Episcopal family played a big role in shaping her religious beliefs. However, she confesses that college and high school life almost tampered with her faith in God. Nonetheless, her faith started to show up while serving as an English and Expository Writing professor at Boston University.
As she was attending a Unitarian Church service in Boston where one of the Buddhist pastors was leading the sermons, Kirby says that was the moment her spirit got reconnected with her episcopal faith. Consequently, she decided to go back to Yale divinity school for her undergraduate degree in literature before moving to St. Georges where she has been since 2014.
Kirby who is married to ED and is blessed with a 9-year old daughter recently moved to live on campus. When asked how she feels being appointed as the first female chaplain at St. Georges, Kirby smiles and says she is overjoyed by the appointment and assets that she is prepared to handle the responsibilities that come with it.
“I want to serve in this position to the best of my knowledge. If only I can be a role model to the young men and women in this school and community, I would be very grateful” said Kirby while responding to a question from the Daily News early this week.