Reverend Jaylynn Byassee
Jaylynn hails from West Texas, land of scorpions, cacti, and high school football. She studied education at Texas Tech University. After spending years teaching children with special needs and elementary education, she then taught English as a Second Language in Budapest, Hungary. She has always seen herself as one who loves people and discovering and learning about new cultures. She followed a call to seminary at Duke Divinity School in 1998, earning her Master of Divinity degree. With over 20 years of experience, Jaylynn has led churches of all size across North Carolina, in the western suburbs of Chicago, as well as the Lower Mainland--serving in urban, rural, and suburban settings. She has also led the Western North Carolina United Methodist Conference as Director of Missions. Jaylynn is an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church, and was thrilled to begin the process of joining the United Church of Canada in 2018. She is grateful for the foundation of the United Church of Canada, for its strength in unity and inclusion, where as followers of Jesus we grow in faith together as we share in Kingdom living with and for all peoples.
Jaylynn and her husband, Jason, met at Duke Divinity school and have three sons: Jack, Sam, and Will. Jason serves as Butler Chair in Homiletics and Biblical Interpretation at Vancouver School of Theology (VST). They’ve lived in Canada since 2015 and most recently have spent a 7-month sabbatical in Durham, England. She has also traveled for ministry and mission to India, Rwanda, Kenya, South Africa, Bolivia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, and Mexico. In Hungary, she served as central administrator in Budapest for Educational Services International, overseeing teachers placed throughout Hungary, and collaborating and meeting with their colleagues in each school setting.
Before England, Jaylynn served at both Tenth Church and First Baptist Church of Vancouver, as she helped churches walk alongside the marginalized. She helped revitalize a refugee ministry that encourages welcome and friendship, and has been an advocate for supporting mental health education in the church. Jaylynn enjoys pastoral ministry with persons of all ages, and delights in intergenerational ministry! She can’t imagine her life without preaching and mission working together!
Jaylynn loves to engage in people’s lives, make connections, and in her spare time, soak up all the outdoor life she can get! The Byassees’ favourite go-to place is Lynn Canyon Park and Mt. Seymour ski slopes! They look forward to journeying in faith alongside those at North Lonsdale United Church!