Reverend Mark Bigelow, Pastor

Rev. Mark Bigelow serves as Pastor of our church. Mark oversees all the church programs while focusing on worship, pastoral care, outreach and programming for our youth. He particularly likes to preach and lead creative worship services that speak to the spiritual needs of our congregation. A native of Littleton, Colorado, Mark graduated from Columbine High School and then went to Doane College, in Crete, Nebraska, where he studied Philosophy and Religion. After college he attended Union Theological Seminary, in New York City, for his Masters of Divinity. In his first church position Mark served as Associate Pastor for Education and Youth at First Plymouth Congregational Church in Englewood, Colorado.

Two primary areas of interest are interfaith dialogue, and religion and sexuality. Mark is a founding member of the Long Island Multi-Faith forum and is past chair of their education committee. He is a past board member of the Planned Parenthood Federation of American where he has chaired their long-range planning committee. In addition to his work at our church, Mark is Pastoral Care Coordinator for VNS Hospice of Suffolk.

Mark is married to Ronnie Todaro and they have three daughters and one grand-daughter. In his free time he likes to sail, cook, and read.

Ron Ruditis, Church School Director

Ron Ruditis has more than 20 years experience in education, communications, and multi-media. Now he brings his love of education and experience working with children of all ages to his role as Church School Director for the Congregational Church of Huntington, United Church of Christ.

“Religious education has always been an important part of my life, from earliest memories of my father teaching me ‘The Lord’s Prayer’ through my school years at St. Aidan’s elementary school and Chaminade High School, where religious education was as vital as math, english, and science,” Ron explains.

“On a personal note, one of the biggest deciding factors for me becoming a member of the Congregational Church of Huntington is when my wife and I saw the ‘time for children’ part of the service. We always knew we wanted to raise our child in a community of faith that was inclusive and gave everyone a role. Here, the children are engaged in such a meaningful–and fun–way. As Church School Director, I work closely with the Pastor and Children’s Ministry to continue to provide a safe, engaging learning environment for our children, rooted in our faith and our community.”

Ron lives with his wife, son and daughter in Greenlawn, NY, and previously served as a New York City Public School Teacher, as well as an Emmy Award-winning Television Producer, producing educational documentaries that celebrate diversity and the human experience.

Kenneth Zagare, Director of Music

Kenneth Zagare has been directing the acclaimed vocal ensembles at Malverne High School for over a decade, focusing on technical prowess and inclusive, multicultural programming which has inspired audiences from neighborhood to festival stages. He also instructs a rigorous collegiate music theory course, and musically directs the school’s fully-staged musical each spring and summer. Through his tailored, collaborative coachings, his students have auditioned and been selected for participation in such honorary choirs as NMEA All-County, NYSSMA All-State, NAfME All-Eastern, the MYO Chorale, and the ACDA All-Eastern/All-National Choir.
 

He previously spent sixteen years as Minister of Music at Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Lake Ronkonkoma, where he led the adult and festival choirs and managed the church website, live streaming and social media pages. He is a member of the eVoco Voice Collective and a freelance accompanist between Nassau and Suffolk counties. He also spent four years accompanying the MYO Suffolk & Suffolk Symphonic Choir, performing at venues such as Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall.

Kenneth received his BM in Music Education from the Crane School of Music, and completed his MS in Education at SUNY Stony Brook.