Pastor Kayla Bonewell

E-mail Pastor Kayla Bonewell

Rev. Kayla Bonewell was born in Oklahoma City. She earned a BA in Religion from Oklahoma City University (2002), a Master of Liberal Arts from Naropa University (2004), and a Master of Divinity from Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California (2008). Ordained in the United Church of Christ (2010), Kayla has ministry experience as a hospital chaplain, campus minister, social justice activist, youth minister, and associate pastor. Her personal mission statement is “To empower community, through experiences of the divine, to lead lives of deep meaning, while cultivating health, peace, and beauty in our world.” She is passionate about relevant worship, spiritual growth, and community engagement. Kayla is a member of the inaugural class of the UCC’s “Next Generation Leadership Initiative,” a 20-year focus on energizing and sustaining younger, emerging UCC local church pastors. She was awarded “Forty under 40 in Oklahoma City Leadership” in 2016, and received an “Oklahoma Human Rights” award from Amnesty International in 2018.


Susan Dillard

Choir Director

Susan Dillard, a recent graduate from Oklahoma City University’s Master’s program in Musical Theater, is proud to be entering her third year as director of Church of the Open Arms’ choir. When not making music at COA, Susan is adjunct voice faculty at the University of Science and Arts in Chickasha, Oklahoma, and at OCU. She also teaches a Music Appreciation class at Oklahoma City Community College. Susan loves to perform as much as she enjoys teaching and she has found so much joy through singing and leading choir rehearsals at Open Arms and is so grateful for the family she has found at our church. She looks forward to all the opportunities that OKC and COA have in store. In the meantime, come sing with us! All are welcome!

Courtney Charish

Administrative Assistant & Bookkeeper
E-mail Courtney Charish

Courtney Charish was raised in Choctaw, OK, and graduated with her Bachelor’s in 2000 from the University of Oklahoma as a double major in Criminology and Ethics & Religion. She received her Master’s in Sociology from the University of Oklahoma in 2004, with a thesis concerning gender disparity in the juvenile justice system. She and her wife, Cathy Charish, had their Holy Union on April 1st, 2000 and were officially married on April 1st, 2016. Courtney enjoys time with her family, walking in the park and playing with her three dogs: Tattoo, the Pomeranian, Rosie, the Dachshund, and Honey, the Chihuahua.  

Sydney Stanfield

Nursery Staff

My name is Sydney Stanfield and I am currently I student at OSU-OKC. I’m majoring in Business Management in hopes of owning my own vegan-friendly restaurant and start other plant-based projects! I enjoy working with young children and creating bonds with them. My mother was a big influence in my decision of working with children since she had a home daycare when I was a child.

Lay Leadership





Executive Council

President:  Conna Wilkinson

Vice President: Adrian Maxey

Past President:  Steve Ross

Treasurer: Margy Dillon

Secretary: Christa Woods


Ministries Teams & Leaders

Building and Grounds: Ron Bashant

Care Team: Christa Woods

Christian Education: Lisa Wolfe, LiErin Probasco & Sara Myers-Compton                               

Church Relations: LiErin Probasco, Kenny Wright-Bass, Steve Ross & Pam Schonauer

Clothing Closet: Donna Karns

Community Life: Bo & Kenny Wright-Bass

Finance Secretary: Sannie Hoyt

Food Pantry: Laura Choate, Kenny & Bo Wright-Bass

Funerals and Special Events: Sannie Hoyt

Greeters & Hospitality: Linda & Mark Herndon

Small Groups: Nancy Sharp

Social Justice: Nathaniel Batchelder

Worship and Music: Gloria Weiss

Youth Group: Pastor Kayla, LiErin Probasco, & Adrian Maxey