Pastor’s Welcome

About Pastor Paul

Paul Gibson was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; his family moved to Florida when he was ten years old.  His father was a Lutheran pastor, and his mother is descended from a long line of Lutheran pastors.  She always hoped Paul would be a pastor, but she had to wait a long time for that to happen.  His first career was as an opera singer.  His second career was as a monk.  He studied music in Tallahassee and Miami and then sang professionally for twelve years, the last five of which were in Berlin, Germany. 

When a good friend of his was killed in a freak accident, he had an emotional and spiritual crisis.  Was God so cruel as to cause his friend’s death, or too powerless to stop it from happening?  It was questions like that and his own dissatisfaction with life that set him on the path to being a monk. 

For six years as a monk, he went to church six times a day! He studied and prayed a lot and worked on a manual printing press making Christmas cards and stationery.  He thought he had found the answers to life’s questions and was sure he would be a monk until the day he died.  Then, he realized that God had other plans for him.

He didn’t know what those plans were, but he left the monastery and moved to Tarpon Springs, where one of his sisters lived.  He joined the congregation of St Paul’s Lutheran in Clearwater and worked as their church secretary.  When he realized that God could use all of his life experience in the church, he listened to the voices saying he should be a pastor and started the process of becoming one.  He went to seminary in Philadelphia and served an internship congregation in Nevada.

In 2014, he was called to serve Trinity here in St Pete.  A year later, he met his future husband; their wedding was held at Trinity.  Just before the COVID pandemic started, he was elected Dean of the Suncoast Conference, with responsibility for churches in the southern two-thirds of Pinellas County.  In that role, he has been helping the call committee do its work, which led to him volunteering to serve as Hope’s “vice pastor.”