Minister Loretta Saint-Louis, MDiv, PhD recently joined the ministerial staff at Union Baptist and is working towards ordination in the American Baptist Churches of Massachusetts. She is a member of the Prayer Ministry and on the board of the Union Social Action Foundation. Worship, pastoral care, and social justice are her great passions.
Minister Loretta came to Union Baptist from Pentecostal Tabernacle in Cambridge, MA. There she served as a deacon and leader of the Stephen Ministry Team, a counseling ministry which provides training, supervision, and continuing education to lay caregivers. She also served on the Prophetic Team, in the Food Pantry, and, for a few years, as organist during Sunday service.
Minister Loretta received her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Anthropology from West Virginia University. Her PhD is in Cultural Anthropology, from Boston University, where she did her dissertation on Haitian migration. Recently, she completed all coursework for her Masters in Divinity from Boston University School of Theology, where she specialized in Practical Theology. While at the School of Theology she completed an internship in contextual education at St. Paul African Methodist Episcopal Church, specializing in pulpit ministry, and a chaplaincy internship in the Clinical Pastoral Education program at Beverly Hospital. There, in addition to hospital and nursing home chaplaincy, she worked in a day care program for people with Alzheimers.
Minister Loretta’s secular work was at the Cambridge Health Alliance. There, she served for many years as the director of Multilingual Interpreting, growing the staff, increasing the quality of interpreting, and increasing ease of access to interpreting. She became an outspoken advocate for immigrant health rights and Massachusetts’ law requiring hospitals to provide interpreters in emergency rooms and psychiatric settings. In recognition of her work, she received the Drylongso Award from Community Change, Inc., an award recognizing “Ordinary people doing extraordinary work against racism.” She also received the Racquel Cashman Access to Health Care Award from the International Medical Interpreters Association.
Prior to her work in interpreter services, Min. Loretta, who speaks Haitian Creole, worked in the Haitian Mental Health Clinic at Cambridge Hospital Department of Psychiatry. There, working under clinical supervision, she provided therapy to individuals, couples, and groups. She also provided cultural consultation to medical providers.
Min. Loretta is blessed with two sons, Jean-Philippe Saint-Louis (JP), in Virginia, and Darren Smith, in Chelsea, Massachusetts. JP and his wife Shelita are the proud parents of Zion (grandma’s delight).