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White Plains’ New Pastor

The White Plains Presbyterian Church on North Broadway called The Rev. Jeffrey A. Geary as our new Senior Pastor in January 2011. White Plains Presbyterian Church is a congregation that will be 300 years old in 2014 and is a member of the Presbytery of Hudson River and the Presbyterian Church USA.

The Rev. Jeffrey A. Geary is an ordained minister of word and sacrament in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) since 1996, Rev. Geary served as the Associate Pastor of the Setauket Presbyterian Church on Long Island for fifteen years prior to accepting his current position.  He brings expertise in education, family, and justice ministries.  At an honoring ceremony, a local Long Island paper summarized Rev. Geary’s ministry saying, “His vocation is to help others find theirs.”

An avid reader, you will likely spot him at a local coffee shop, book in hand, reading the latest in French philosophy or a Wendell Berry novel.  However, his predilection is for “kitchen table” theology – reflection that is a part of ordinary conversation about the challenges and possibilities of life; the kind that happens over kitchen tables rather than in lecture halls.

Having nurtured his former congregation’s relationship with a sister church in San Antonio de los Baños Cuba, Rev. Geary is committed to fostering dignity and equality with partners in mission.  Rev. Geary also served as the immediate past President of the Shalom Interfaith Partnership, a Long Island non-profit that works together with people who have been made poor to provide emergency assistance and create practices for a more sustainable life together as a community.  “I was drawn to the Presbyterian Church of White Plains because it is vibrant and inclusive,” he explains.  Affirming that all people are created in God’s image, Rev. Geary works actively to include GLBTI persons in the full life and ministry of the Presbyterian Church.

Equally at home as a high ropes course instructor at the Presbyterian Camp at Holmes, NY or at the Victor Rothschild Memorial Symposia at the  Institute for Advanced Study at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Rev. Geary suggests it is the practices of our life that define our faith – attentive prayer, hospitality, breaking bread, sharing goods, passing peace.

Currently completing a Ph.D. in medieval history from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, Rev. Geary holds a Masters of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary and certificates in adolescent studies as well as youth ministry.  He is an active member of the Society of Biblical Literature and the Medieval Academy.  He is married to the Rev. Noelle Damico, who works for the national offices of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in the field of human rights.  They have a four-year-old son, August Xavier.  “White Plains is an ideal city; it’s international, intellectual and interesting”, he quips.  “My family and I look forward to sinking our roots deep in this wonderful place.”

8 Comments leave one →
  1. Barbara Jenkins permalink
    July 24, 2011 1:05 pm

    Pastor Jeff,

    I just checked out the puppets and the sand art that you told me about at Holmes, all I can say is YOU GUYS ROCK!!!! The puppets are gorgeous and would love to see them go on tour. Regarding the sand art …. I want to know more, I would love to do this with our Sunday Schoolers.

    I look forward to coming over for a visit one Sunday morning.

    • July 26, 2011 4:15 pm

      Thanks Barbara. The first stop for the sand art would be to look at pictures on our facebook page. Then give a call or drop an email to our Director of Youth Ministry, Lynn Dunn, who designed the program that day. We are currently using a sand angel, made by a four year old, as our facebook profile pic.

  2. Camille permalink
    January 15, 2013 5:49 pm

    I use to be a member of The White Plains Presbyterian Church. I would like to have a copy of the church directory. I did try the “contact us” at the home page of the church it is not connected. Thanks Camille

  3. Jennifer Zaccara permalink
    July 12, 2013 6:31 pm

    Dear Reverend Geary,

    I happened to see the sermon that you gave on the Italian immigrant experience at the White Plains Presbyterian church, and I realized that Reverend Antonio Zaccara was my great-grandfather. Do you have any more information about him? I am doing some family research.

    Many thanks,


    • July 12, 2013 7:13 pm

      Jennifer, I would be glad to share what I have. I’m sure there is more to be found than what I have on my desk right now, and as the church is heading toward our 300th anniversary I am working through lots of stuff. There are still some members around who have stories to share. Drop me an email ( and let me know how best we can talk, as well as where you are located now.

      I too am working on ancestry stuff and know how important seemingly small clues can be. I’m glad to make your acquaintance.


  4. Peter Orlando permalink
    February 1, 2016 12:33 am

    Hi Reverend Geary,

    As a former member of WPPC, I also enjoyed reading your Heritage Day sermon from 2013.
    It gave me a little more background on the Italian Church that my grandfather, Louis Orlando, used to tell us about & how he would assist in their services. My father’s parents came to White Plains from Pittston, PA after a coal mine accident killed some relatives. As I understand it, when my grandmother’s parents came over to America & settled in Pittston, they experienced some “issues” with the local catholic priests & they eventually switched to the Presbyterian Church out there which is how my grandparents came to the Italian Church at WPPC when they moved to NY. I also perused some of your blog & saw names like Lillian Bird & Robert Ruger mentioned – WPPC royalty in my father’s mind, a former Deacon of the church. It was a nice trip down memory road.

    Peter Orlando

    • February 1, 2016 10:53 am

      Peter, it is wonderful to hear from you. I would really love to hear more stories from your family about this place. I also have lots of unanswered questions about the Church of the Savior. I’ve been in touch with other members of the church, particularly descendants of one of the pastors. Sounds like you’re doing some ancestry/history work yourself. I’m more than happy to share what I have, what I know. Are you still around White Plains?

    • March 7, 2016 2:42 pm

      Peter, I just saw a obituary for your mother, Theresa. I am so sorry, and extend the sympathy and love of the congregation to you and your family. Pastor Jeff

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