Lead Pastor

Pastor Gerald Elston

  Send Email  •  (301)879-8100

Pastor Gerald Elston, Sr. continues to respond with gratitude to God’s grace in his life. As a boy growing up in Washington, D.C., he was a stutterer. But he had a fascination with preachers. While sitting with his mother listening attentively to the preacher, he did not know what they were saying. But he felt God’s pull and nudge that told him, you can do this.

This fascination motivated him to work on his speaking skills and to pursue excellence in education. God healed him of his stuttering and allowed him to win the City-Wide Oratorical Contest in High School, to pursue High School leadership positions, and to graduate as the Theodore Roosevelt High School Salutatorian. He earned degrees from Georgetown University and Georgetown University Law School. He completed a 30-year career as a Trial Lawyer with the U.S. Departments of Justice and Homeland Security.

But meanwhile, God continued to call him, commitment him and consecrate him. He continued to explore this fascination with preachers, joining the Mt. Zion United Methodist Church in Washington, D.C. after High School. There he explored God’s pulls and nudges in Bible Study, choir, lay leadership and lay speaking and service.

Pastor Gerald Elston, Sr. felt God’s pulls and nudges the strongest in 2004, at the close of a 30-year career and at the point when his mother was to undergo a second leg amputation. He asked God, “what do you what me to do.” He asked this question, now recognizing God’s call on his life first manifested to him as a boy. He asked the question almost anticipating the answer. God had healed him of stuttering and had given him choices in life, preacher or lawyer, and he chose the later. God told him, “Take care of your mother and preach the Gospel.” And he promised God that he would.

He retired in 2005 as a lawyer to pursue God’s call to ministry. While pursuing a Masters in Divinity from John Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C., the Bishop appointed him in 2007 as Pastor at Bells United Methodist Church in Camp Springs, Maryland. He received his Masters in Divinity degree in May, 2009.

Pastor Gerald Elston has served two other churches in Washington, D.C.: Brightwood Park United Methodist Church, July 1, 2011 to June 30, 2021; and Albright Memorial United Methodist Church, November 14, 2017 to June 30, 2021. On May 31, 2019, Pastor Gerald Elston was commissioned as a Provisional Elder in the United Methodist Church.

Pastor Gerald Elston, Sr. brings to Good Hope Union United Methodist Church 14 years of experience as Pastor, a heart for people and a passion for preaching, teaching, singing, and reviving the church to be an intergenerational, multicultural church. He enjoys winning souls for Christ. Pastor Elston has a deep concern for our youth, young adults, and seniors, for the importance of education, and the desire for the church to serve as community partners for the needs of people. He is deeply concerned about the issues that face our community, especially issues of injustice. 

Pastor Gerald Elston, Sr. is married to Jan Elston (June 18, 1977), his High School sweetheart. They have lived in Silver Spring, Maryland since 1984. They have two adult children, Monica Elston Carter and Gerald Elston, Jr., and six grandchildren: three grandsons and triplet granddaughters.

What excites Pastor Gerald Elston, Sr. about serving as the Pastor of Good Hope Union is the opportunity together, in partnership with God’s grace, to reach every village; meeting needs, transforming lives, and changing human systems to love like Jesus. He invites you on this journey with us.   

Good Hope Union Council ....

Gerald Elston, Lead Pastor

Church Council Chair: Dion Hamilton

Recording Secretary: Dale Williams

Staff Parish Relations Committee Chair: Clarence Snuggs

Sue Bryant

Maurice Jagne-Shaw

Dale Williams

Jo Willams

Board of Trustees Chairs: Larry Williams & Carver Bryant

Pam Browne

Robin Bush

Kim Campbell

Winston Carew

Wendy Cummings 

Kevin Jones

James McKenzie

Kevin Thorpe

Worship Comittee Chair: Cherryann Tang-Nian

Nominations and Leadearship Development Chair: Pastor Gerald Elston, Sr.

Audrey Alleyne

Jennifer Boston

Carver Bryant

Jackie Jones

Dorothy Keys

Maleka Lawrence

Joan Lee

Cynthia Rolark

Ross Washington


Finance Committee Chair: Audrey Allyene

Finance Committee Vice-chair: Vacant

Financial Co-Secretaries:  Mary Rawley & Suzanne Mitchell

Stewartship Coordinator: Vacant

Treasurer: Thomas Jones, III

Lay Leader: Ellen Aubee

Lay Member to Annual Conference: Audrey Allyene


Other Council Members:

Children Ministry Chair: Vacant

Church Historian Coordinator: Ellen Aubee

Church School Superintendent Coordinator: Vacant

Global Missions: Patience Oliver-Jobe

Health and Wellness Ministry Chair: Vacant

Membership Secretary: Vacant

Multimedia Chair: Carver Bryant

Multimedia Co-Chair: Sue Bryant

Nurture Ministry Chair: Jennifer Boston

Outreach Mnistry Co-Chairs: Ruth Boyd-Okogun, Betsy Johnson, and Regina Okogun

Senior Adult Ministry, Co-chairs: Ethel Shelton, Mary Rawley, & Jo Williams

Small Group Ministries, Co-chairs: Arletta Boston & Sue Bryant

Stewardship: Vacant

United Methodist Women President: Delores Martin

United Methodist Women Vice-president: Gladys Davis

United Methodist Men President: Dion Hamilton

Witness Ministry Chair: Olabisi Daramy

Young Adults Ministry Coordinator: Vacant

Youth Ministry Coordinators: IraTiger

Church Leadership Documents


Church Leader Covenant


Church Committee Member Covenant


Safe Sanctuaries Policy

Church Policy and Procedures Manual (Revised June 2014)


  July 2021  
Bible Search