Biography of Rev. Scott Elliott
The Reverend Scott Elliott was born and raised in San Jose, CA. Scott met his wife Nancy while attending San Jose City College, and the two of them went off to California State University Stanislaus where Scott earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Drama, magna cum laude in 1979.
In 1987, Scott earned a Doctorate in Jurisprudence at the University of Oregon. After passing the Oregon State Bar, he established a practice on the Oregon coast in Lincoln City, where he also ran a very successful theatre program for youth and families which earned him a Coastal Communities Cultural Center’s Annual Award for Commitment to Excellence in the Arts.
In 2003, after sixteen years of practicing law, Scott and his family headed to Eden Theological Seminary in St. Louis, MO where he earned a Masters of Divinity degree.
Scott previously served as the pastor at Riviera UCC in Palm Bay, Florida for seven years, where he also ran a family and youth Shakespeare Theatre Company.
Known for thoughtful and fun sermons Scott challenges the listener to center on Jesus’ call to embrace not only a loving God, but all people especially those others might place on the margins or think of as sinners. It should be no surprise then that Scott’s ministry has also led him to a lot of work on peace and justice issues. In 2012 he received a distinguished Lilly Grant Sabbatical award to study peace with peace educator and Peace Village founder the Reverend Charles Busch. In 2014, his first summer in Ohio, Scott started Ohio’s first Peace Village, a children’s interfaith peace camp which he continues to co-direct.
Scott is especially known for work on social justice matters relating to LGBTQ, Women and People of Color, and his progressive sermons on these and other topics. The United Church of Christ national news has covered some of his interfaith civil rights leadership including the formation of an ongoing Overcoming Racism class and an annual interfaith Martin Luther King Jr. Service. Locally Scott was honored with the 2018 Spirit of Vision award for this work, and also served as this year’s recent keynote speaker at the Legacy Committee, Kenyon College and Mount Vernon Nazarene University Martin Luther King Celebration. He has also served as a panelist at the colleges’ conversations on racism and at Miami University’s “Better Together Week.”
Scott’s theology is progressive and Bible-based. He takes very seriously Jesus’ two supreme commandments, to love God, and to love our neighbors, and Micah 6’s claim that what God requires of us is to seek justice, love kindness and walk humbly with our God.
Scott begins each service with the time honored litany that “God is good all the time” and he ends the service with the blessing to “Go in peace knowing that you are loved and that you matter much.” In between there is singing, prayer, thoughtful messages, humor, and lots of love.
The rest of the week Scott is working on justice and peace issues, teaching and providing care and compassion to those in need.
Scott and Nancy have four wonderful grown children, a dog and two cats. They make their home in Mount Vernon where they love to walk, explore central Ohio, take photographs, read and putter around the house.
Scott began his call at First Congregational United Church of Christ on November 1, 2013.