is to create a community-focused alternative to the for-profit housing market that is rooted in relationship and mutuality: co-housing communities in which people live like families, sharing meals, common spaces, and the rhythms of home care.
Isaac (he/him) is a passionate believer in intentional community; he co-founded one such community with five collaborators in 2011 and has lived there with his partner ever since, and was a part of the founding team that conceived and created CRECHE. Before joining the CRECHE staff, Isaac served as the Minister of Liturgical Arts at The Crossing, a Boston-based church plant, and had a ten-year career as a session musician in New York City prior to that.
Isaac has professional certificates in nonprofit management and fundraising from Boston University, a Masters of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary, and a dual degree in Mathematics and Music Composition from NYU.
As a musician, author, and liturgist, he has written The Emergent Psalter, a contemporary setting of the psalms, and released Rotation and Transmission, two electronic pop albums inspired by liturgical texts.
Isaac spends his spare time making music, coaching weightlifters, and playing nerdy board games.
Community Organizer for Neighborhood Engagement
Sky (they/them) is thrilled to be CRECHE’s first ever Life Together Fellow. Sky graduated in spring 2019 from Yale College, where they studied Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality, and wrote their thesis on trans community building at Yale over the past 15 years.
Sky’s interest in community goes back to their days as a camper and camp counselor in Vermont. They brought a passion for community building to Yale where they helped to create and served on the board of the student organization Trans@Yale. Sky also worked to strengthen Yale’s community through their jobs as a Communication and Consent Educator and as a Peer Liaison for Yale’s Office of LGBTQ Resources. As a junior Sky captained the Yale Women’s Rugby team.
As a Life Together Fellow, Sky lives in an intentional community in Dorchester with other fellows. They love cooking, painting, spending time with their housemates, and doing the hard and rewarding work of building a thriving intentional community.
Angel Figueroa (he/him)
Angel is a proud Puerto Rican born and raised in Greater New York, and is a founding member of the St Mary's House. He has lived in Ohio, Idaho, Montana, and Chicago before moving to Boston to work for Episcopal City Mission, where he uses his background in faith-based organizing to engage Episcopalians in the work of economic and racial justice. He first encountered faith-based community organizing while attending the Lutheran School of Theology of Chicago, from which he graduated with a Masters of Arts in Theological Study.
Chelsea Smith (she/her)
Chelsea has lived in five different intentional communities in Boston and Michigan. With a background in administration and bookkeeping, she has worked as an office manager/bookkeeper at a small church, an administrative assistant with an Episcopal farm ministry, and accounting assistant for the Grand Rapids Dominican Sisters, and co-coordinator of a community garden. She now works for the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts as Assistant for Governance and Administration.
Kyrah Rodriguez (she/her)
Kyrah is the Director of New Life Relocation Consultants, an agency that provides both relocation and support services to residents in affordable and mixed income communities. She’s seen firsthand the impact that quality housing can have on people’s lives, and is excited by the way Creche lives in the intersection between housing justice and spiritual community. In addition to her community work, she’s a former co-warden at the Parish of St Paul Newton Highlands and has been deeply involved in immigrant justice and the Sanctuary movement.
Lauren Zook (she/her)
Lauren works in the Development Office of Northeastern University, and prior to that as grants administrator, development assistant, and global mission administrator at the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts. She believes in the sustaining power of Christian family in difficult times, and is excited to join in Creche’s lifegiving work! Her most interesting extracurricular activity is an annual quest to watch every Oscar-nominated film before the awards ceremony.
Megan Holding (she/her)
Megan is the Episcopal Chaplain at Northeastern University and Boston College, and maintains affiliations with St. Paul's, Brookline and Church of the Redeemer, Chestnut Hill. Prior to seminary, she worked as a healthcare lawyer in Boston and a law clerk in Louisville KY - while she’s retired from the Massachusetts Bar, her legal training is one expertise she brings to the Creche board. She believes that intentional communities fill practical and spiritual needs, offering sustainable housing options and communal and interpersonal connections in a time when both seem scarce.
Mike Scanlon (he/him)
Mike is an award-winning independent architecture & planning professional with a particular specialty in historic preservation. Among other accomplishments, his work at 101 Beacon Street won a prestigious Preservation Achievement Award from the Boston Preservation Alliance, and he has chaired the Building Commission at Emmanuel Church for nearly a decade. In his spare time he is an accomplished ceramics artist, throwing pots at Mudflat Studios in Somerville, where he also serves on the board.
Michael Zanhiser (he/him)
Michael has founded two intentional communities in Boston, one in Jamaica Plain and one in Dorchester, where he now lives with his wife and several housemates. He works as a software engineer for a firm designing autonomous vehicles. He’s interested in intentional community both as a politically and socially radical idea (sharing space and expenses in order to live more simply and sustainably) and as a form of Christian witness and spiritual formation, seeing voluntary interdependence as an antidote for our increasingly isolated and independent lives.
Pamela Werntz (she/her)
Pam is the rector of Emmanuel Church in the City of Boston. She was on the founding team that launched Creche and secured funding to make the vision of building intentional communities a reality because the mission aligned so closely with Emmanuel Church's priorities and realities. Prior to seminary and ordination, her professional life was as a Human Resources executive for a large corporation, with expertise in organizational development.
Rebekah Rodrigues (she/her)
Rebekah lives in the Emmanuel House with Jamie, her fiancée, and Garie, her cat. Originally from Fremont, California, she moved to Massachusetts to study political science and clarinet performance and now works as the Property Manager of Allston Brighton Congregational Church. Rebekah loves to cook, sing, and play cards with her housemates, and she's excited to bring her experience to her work with the board so that more people experience the joy and intimacy of living in an intentional community.
Tom Marsan-Ryan (he/him)
Tom was first exposed to intentional communities through my time living and working with the monks of the Society of St John the Evangelist (SSJE) in Harvard Square. He then spent four years living in intentional communities before starting a household and family with his partner. After five years as the Guesthouse Manager of SSJE, he spent two years as the Children's & Family Minister at Grace Episcopal Church in Newton, before transitioning to life as an artist's spouse and nonprofit president.
Saint Mary's House
Congregation: St Mary's Episcopal Church
Located in the heart of Dorchester by Ronan Park, the St Mary’s House is just under twenty minutes from St Mary’s Episcopal Church on foot. With six bedrooms, a beautiful porch, a spacious backyard, ample common space, and a sauna in the basement, the Saint Mary's House is well-equipped to house a vibrant community. The St Mary's House is also Creche's first partnership with a historically Black congregation, and we could not be more excited!
Congregation: Emmanuel Church
Emmanuel House is a historic “Tudorbethan” single-family home in Allston, just two minutes from the Packards Corner stop on the B line. Emmanuel House is committed to cultivating community space for contemplative repose, urban agriculture, and arts events. The house currently maintains a community garden in their yard where neighborhood members are invited to harvest from and relax. They hold daily morning prayer in a room in the house they have converted into a permanent chapel.
Neighborhood: North Cambridge
Congregation: The Crossing
Crossing House, nestled in residential North Cambridge, is a twelve minute walk from Davis Square and a fifteen minute walk from Alewife. Lovers of event-planning, hospitality, and welcoming those they meet, the Crossing House is discerning a call to the welcome and affirmation of others’ stories.
Each CRECHE community is formed in a year-long discernment process with a partner congregation. Our partner congregations are:
Grant funding and loans support the work of building intentional community, from operations funding to the recent purchase of a house in Dorchester where we will launch the St Mary’s community. We receive funding from: