Yvi Martin, Lead Pastor

Rev. Yvi Martin comes to Platte Woods UMC after 11 years of ministry in the Missouri Annual Conference, serving churches first in Springfield (King’s Way UMC), then St. Louis (The Gathering UMC). First called to ministry at the age of 15, Yvi served as a missionary for the Free Methodist Church in both the Philippines and Mozambique before discerning a call to pastoral ministry and beginning that journey at Candler School of Theology at Emory University. While pieces of her heart remain in every place she has served, she eagerly anticipates sharing gifts of teaching, writing, preaching, music and hospitality with the wonderful community of Platte Woods UMC.


Along for the adventure is husband, Scott Giffen, who works as VP of Advancement for Greenville University, but more importantly brings the gifts of humor, leadership, music and a deep faith to this new church community. Their two sons, Ezekiel (8) and Lazarus (4) come with all the energy, creativity, spunk and strong wills that one might expect from preacher’s kids! They will quickly make every other parent of small children who act out in church feel completely normal and ok. And they will, no doubt, make you laugh.  


Introduction Video From Pastor Yvi

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Britton Fields, Associate Pastor

Britton serves PWUMC as an associate pastor. He is a second-career pastor who received the call to ministry while working as an engineer. He has a passion for students, families and discipleship. He received his master of divinity degree from Saint Paul School of Theology. In his spare time, Britton enjoys playing guitar and sports of all kinds including the Chiefs, Royals, Sporting KC and Mizzou!

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Choongho Kwon, Associate Pastor

Rev. Dr. Choongho Kwon will join PWUMC as an associate pastor. He completed his doctorate of ministry from Candler School of Theology in 2017.


Choongho comes to us from Avondale UMC, where he served as pastor the last five years. He has been in ministry more than 20 years and has extensive experience in the areas of Intentional Faith Development and Congregational Care.


Choongho comes to PWUMC with his wife, Hannah, and his two teenage sons, Samuel and Stephen.


Introduction Video From Pastor Choongho

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Lori Bogart, Director of Administration & HR

Lori serves as the director of administration and human resources. She and her husband Jeff are 20+ year members of the church and have two adult children. Lori has served in many volunteer capacities at the church and has worked in the church office since 2008. Her current role allows her to utilize her background in human resource management to continue serving the PWUMC staff and congregation.

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Meghan Wilson, Receptionist

Janice Ramsey, Administrative Associate

Janice has been a member of PWUMC for 35 years, and began working at PWUMC in our Children’s Ministry in 2000. Her current responsibilities include a focus on staff and volunteer background screenings through Because We Care, Safe Sanctuaries and/or Safe Gatherings.


Janice has her BA from Hendrix College, Conway, Arkansas, and an MA from University of Arkansas-Fayetteville. She taught Math for 17 years in the North Kansas City School District.


She enjoys spending time with her family, including two daughters, a son-in-law, two grandchildren and one granddog, Wendell. Janice also enjoys puzzles (Sudoku, logic and jigsaw) and going out to eat with family and friends.

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Misty Wilkinson, Financial Manager

Misty serves as the financial manager for PWUMC. She enjoys working with people through her background in accounting. She also enjoys lake time with her husband, Bill, and daughters.

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Rachel Zolnowski, Administrative Associate

 Rachel serves as an administrative associate at PWUMC, focusing on database management and accounts payable. She has attended Platte Woods for over 30 years and is now raising her 2 children here with her husband Adam. Rachel loves watching baseball and can often be found out at the K cheering on the Royals!

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Adult Ministry

Anne Bartholow, Director of Senior Adult Ministry

 Anne serves as director of Senior Adult Ministry. After many years of working with God’s children she is delighted to be involved with God’s senior adults at PWUMC. She loves being active with her family as well as being active with her church family!

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Vicki Krehbiel, Director of Counseling

Vicki serves as director of Counseling. Vicki brings 25 years of counseling experience to her ministry, and her passion is helping others heal past hurts. She enjoys being GG (Goofy Grandma) to two energetic grandchildren.

Vicki’s BlogEmail Vicki
Choongho Kwon, Associate Pastor

As an associate pastor at PWUMC, Choongho leads our adult learning ministry. Learn more about Choongho in his bio at the top of the page.

Email Pastor Choongho

Children’s & Youth Ministry

Sue Arensberg, Director of Sunbeams Preschool & PDO

 Sue serves as director of Sunbeams Preschool and Parents’ Day Out at PWUMC. She graduated from University of Iowa with an elementary education and early childhood degree, and received her master’s degree in elementary education from UMKC. She enjoys teaching group fitness classes, and spending time with her husband, Mark, and teenage twin daughters.

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Jen Bruce, Director of Children's Ministries

Jen has served in our Children’s Ministry since 2013, and as our director of Children’s Ministry since 2018. She brings to her work an abiding passion for children and families and a background in social work. Jen enjoys spending time with family and friends, especially her husband, Dan, and their four sons.

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Mandy Phillips, Children's Ministry Associate

Mandy serves as a Children’s Ministry associate, providing support to our children’s programming. She is married with two adult kiddos and enjoys family time, sewing and crafting, as well as active pursuits such as running and bike riding.

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Janessa Smith, Director of Student Ministry

Janessa joined PWUMC as our Director of Student Ministries in 2019. She is a lifelong Methodist who previously attended and worked in student ministry at Kearney UMC.

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Miranda Wingett, Sunbeams Preschool & PDO Associate

Miranda serves as a Sunbeams and PDO associate at PWUMC. She has worked with the children of the church for more than 20 years. She graduated from Missouri Western State University with an elementary education and early childhood degree, and received her master’s degree in education from Webster University. She enjoys scrapbooking and spending time with her husband, Jason, and two daughters.

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Jennifer Simms, Director of Communications

 Jennifer serves as the director of communications for PWUMC. Jennifer has overseen all areas of communications and publicity for the church since her hiring in 2002. She brings a background in marketing and a passion for ministry to her work, and enjoys spending time with her husband, Bill, and two kids. MIZ!

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Becky Bacon, Custodian

 Becky serves in facilities for PWUMC. She help clean and maintain the building. She enjoys spending time with family and friends and doing crafts.

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Mike Casey, Maintenance Coordinator

 Mike serves as a member of the Facilities team at PWUMC. He is a U.S. Army veteran and has a passion for helping others. He enjoys the cinema, music and gaming of all kinds.

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Brandi Molina, Director of Missions

 Brandi has served as our director of Missions since 2018, and has been on staff since 2016. She has a background in business and secondary education. Outside of work Brandi enjoys playing sand volleyball and going on adventures with her husband, Trey, and their daughter.

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Walter Bryant, Music Director

Walter has been part of the music ministry at PWUMC for decades, but he’s also well-known on the Kansas City music scene. You might have heard him performing with area bands, heard his jingles on TV or heard his arrangements at the shows at Worlds of Fun each year.


Walter and his wife, Julie, have three adult children and two dogs who keep them busy.


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Alex Garnett, Technical Coordinator

Alex serves as technical coordinator, overseeing the church’s technical production needs and volunteers. He brings his knowledge of music, recording, and a strong work ethic to his role at the church. He’s rarely found without a cup of coffee in hand!

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Julie Moise, Hospitality Coordinator

Julie serves as the Hospitality Coordinator at PWUMC. She and her family have been members of Platte Woods United Methodist Church since 2001. Julie, along with her husband Glenn and three of her children, have volunteered in many roles at the church including Hospitality. Julie’s current role is coordinating volunteers to provide amazing hospitality not only to our guests but also to members of PWUMC. 

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Mat Thornton, Worship Director

 Mat Thornton is our worship director, overseeing all aspects of weekend worship. As a musician and as a leader he brings a lively spirit to this community. Mat has a passion for connecting with people and growing with them in faith. One of his greatest joys is worshiping in new and creative ways with others, especially with his talented wife, Andrea.

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Leading people to follow Jesus.


7310 NW Prairie View Road  ♦  Platte Woods, MO 64151  ♦  816.741.2972
Serving the Kansas City Northland/Parkville community.


Saturdays at 5 pm  ♦  Sundays at 9:30 and 11:00 am