Pastor, Director of Small Groups
Although born and raised in Illinois, Ryan moved to Columbia to attend the University of Missouri. After a year of serving in college ministry in Hungary, he earned a Master of Divinity from Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis. About a year after the start of The Crossing, Ryan returned to Columbia to join the staff team here. Over the years, he has worked with high school students, college students, and 20-somethings, and now oversees the Small Groups ministry.
Pastor, Small Groups
After serving in student and singles ministry in his hometown of Huntsville, AL and then as a missionary to Japan, Kermit graduated from Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis with a Master of Divinity. In 2006, Kermit and his wife, Nicole, returned to her hometown of Columbia to help start and pastor Veritas, The Crossing’s college ministry. Since 2015, Kermit has served as a pastor of small groups. He is part of a team that helps people get into groups and supports group leaders.
Leader & Coach Development
Kelley is from St. Louis, Missouri, and went to the University of Missouri for college where she got involved in Cru. After graduating with a degree in Communication and marrying Ryan, they decided to go into full-time ministry. They moved to Columbia in 2001 to help start The Crossing, and she has served part-time in many areas of the church over years: high school, college, women’s ministry, and Crossing 20s. She currently works with Small Groups recruiting, training, and coaching leaders. She gets really excited about encouraging and equipping others to grow in their faith, and step out to be used by God to lead others. She and Ryan have been married for 20 years and have three children: Ethan, Ella, and Molly.
Small Groups Staff
Jessica grew up in St. Charles, MO. In 2003, she moved to Columbia to attend the University of Missouri. In college, Jessica joined a campus ministry where she later met her husband, Rhett. Together they began attending The Crossing in 2005. Jessica has worked for the past 11 years as an Adult Oncology Nurse. Currently, Jessica is helping other women lead small groups here at The Crossing.
Nicole grew up in Columbia and graduated from the University of Missouri with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications. While at Mizzou, Nicole was involved with CRU. Nicole came on staff part-time with The Crossing in 2016. She has served with the Agape Ministry, the Crossing 20’s, and now the Small Group ministry team. She is thrilled to be working with such good friends and thinks helping people grow in their faith in Christ is the best job out there.
Originally from Dallas, Texas, Noelle has called Columbia home now for almost 18 years. She first came to The Crossing as a freshman at the University of Missouri in 2003. Upon graduating in 2007, she joined Veritas staff in a full-time position mentoring college women, developing leaders, and teaching Bible studies. During her time working with Veritas, she also dated and married her husband, Kyle. Together they have three children. While carrying various ministry roles as a mom to young kids, Noelle now serves on the Small Groups team, coaching small group leaders.
Chris grew up as a missionary kid. His parents served on staff with Cru at Kansas State, and then when he was 10, his family moved to Budapest Hungary where he spent the rest of his childhood as his parents continued to work in campus ministry. Chris returned to the U.S. to attend Kansas State University. After graduating, he decided to join staff with Cru to do campus ministry at Mizzou. While the director of the ministry, Chris commuted to Covenant Theological Seminary and earned a Master of Divinity. Chris and his wife, Elizabeth, with their four daughters, are now on staff with Cru City where they focus on equipping, training, and resourcing people to reach out to their neighbors. Chris is also on staff at The Crossing where he serves on the Small Groups team and is developing a neighboring ministry within The Crossing.
Elizabeth McKinney graduated from Miami University, where she studied Comparative Religion, with a focus on Judaism. She married her husband, Chris, and worked for 17 years as a spiritual resource for college students through Cru and then transitioned to a ministry called Cru City, where she focuses on neighboring. Elizabeth is a mom to four girls. She and Chris are excited to bring a neighboring focus to The Crossing and be a resource to anyone who wants to grow in loving their neighbors.