Our Staff

Pastor Jonathan Bratt Carle

Pastor Jonathan has been with us since July 2017

Pastor Jonathan holds bachelor and master's degrees in music from Mcgill University (Montreal), concentrating in vocal performance. After completing his conservatory training, Jonathan pursued a career in the performing arts as an operatic baritone, singing with opera companies and symphony orchestras throughout Canada and the U.S. After a decade on stage, Jonathan discerned a call to ministry. He grew up in the church along side a mother who is also a pastor (Nancy) and a father who is a church/choral musician (David), so matters of faith and theology were always up for discussion around the dinner table. Nonetheless, this vocational change seemed strange at the time, even as God's call gradually became more defined. After a period of intense discernment with his pastors and family, these feelings were also affirmed by Jonathan's home church, West End UMC (Nashville, TN), and the congregation sent him to Vanderbilt Divinity School with a full scholarship. After 4 years of prayer, study, and growth, Jonathan graduated with a Master of Divinity and received his first pastoral appointment at Trinity UMC in Memphis. Meanwhile at Vanderbilt, Jonathan met the young woman whom God would call to join him in the covenant of marriage. Jessica Bratt is an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church USA and serves as Chaplain to the patients and staff at Spectrum Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids. Jessica and Jonathan have one son, Elliott Thomas. Besides theology and music, Jonathan's other passions include literature (esp. poetry), gardening, camping, and the noble science of brewing beer.

Sari Mercer

Sari is one of our two staff organists

Char Doezema

Char is one of our two staff organists.

Joel Kilgore

Joel is our Audio/Visual Tech and IT.
He has been attending Ionia First since 2005.
Originally from Baltimore Maryland, Joel has had a number of professions including Carpenter, Computer Main Frame Operator and Singer/Musician, performing at many venues around the Baltimore/Washington Area from the late 1960's through the early 2000's.

Marie Church

Marie is our office Administrator.
She has been a member of Ionia First for over 15 years.
Marie is an artist who illustrates children's books, and decorates cakes.  She is also an animal lover who works with dogs and horses.


Contact Us:
Ionia First
United Methodist Church
105 East Main St
Ionia, Michigan
Phone: 616-527-1860

E-mail: ioniafirst@gmail.com
Office hours:
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
9 AM-11:00 PM

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Visitors since 10/11/2017
Ionia First United Methodist Church
Sunday Service 9:30 AM

Loving God
and Neighbor