Mary Lou Van Buren

Title: Religious Organization Administrator (Retired)
Location: Trumansburg, New York, United States

Mary Van Buren, Retired Religious Organization Administrator, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Educator for dedication, achievements, and leadership in religion education. 

Ms. Van Buren became involved in her profession because during her youth, she was very involved in the local church. After graduating from DePauw University with a Bachelor of Arts in 1951, she attended the Union Theological Seminary at Columbia University and received a Master of Arts in Religious Education in 1952. She was later certified as a diaconal minister by the United Methodist Church. 

At the beginning of her career, Ms. Van Buren served as the director of Christian education at the Metropolitan Memorial Methodist Church from 1952 to 1954. Soon thereafter, she joined Bexley United Methodist Church as their director of Christian education from 1954 to 1968. Ms. Van Buren further excelled in a program development role for the General Board of Global Ministries at the United Methodist Church from 1968 to 1976. Moreover, she flourished as the executive secretary from the Women’s Division of the General Board of Global Ministries from 1968 until her retirement in 1989.  

A respected voice in the field, Ms. Van Buren authored the booklet “Retreats, An Introductory Manual” in 1976 and co-authored “Spirituality in Ecumenical Perspective” in 1993. For her accomplishments in the field, she has been the recipient of the Alma Tribute from the Union Theological Seminary as well as the Centennial Laity Award in Spiritual Formation from the Scarritt-Bennett Center. Enjoying her retirement, Ms. Van Buren plays the piano and the organ in her spare time.


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