Meet the Staff

Rich Pennington

Lead Pastor

Rich is the founding pastor of Horizons Church and has served in ministry since the age of 16 in various capacities. He was a Children’s Pastor, Youth Pastor, and Associate Pastor before founding Horizons in February, 1995. He is also an entrepreneur and derives some of his income from his other business efforts. He has a background in business in for profit and nonprofit sectors as well as an extensive background in church and para-church organizations. Rich graduated with a B.S. in Management from George Mason University in 1987. He then attended Regent University and completed his Advanced Certificate in Practical Theology in 1995.

Rich met his wife Paula as a freshman at George Mason, their first date was October 26, 1984 and they wed on April 23, 1988. They have four children. He is an avid reader who enjoys cooking, the outdoors, golfing and running. His passion is to help people discover who they are in Christ.

Favorite thing to do within 100 miles of Stafford: Hiking the waterfalls in Shenandoah National Park.

Coolest experience ever: Being baptized in the Jordan river in Israel. 

Paula Pennington

Events Coordinator

Paula is originally from Ohio, but she moved around a lot as a child. She has lived in the Northern Virginia area for over 30 years and attended George Mason University. A part of the original group of families that started our church back in 1995, she has been a member of Horizons since day one.

First and foremost, Paula is called to serve with her husband, Rich, in ministry. She has served in just about every area of the church over the years, but her passion is in her involvement with the worship team.

Paula and Rich have four kids.

Favorite Bible verses: Philippians 4:13 – “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” It’s comforting to know that He will enable me to do what He has called me to do and give me the ability to withstand anything that comes my way.

Favorite place you’ve ever been: Pompeii in Italy. It was hot, but absolutely amazing!

Favorite thing to do within 100 miles of Stafford: Going to DC to take in the sites, museums, great restaurants, or just walk around. On the bucket list To one day visit the continent of Australia.

Show you are most likely to binge watch: I can binge watch Fixer Upper ALL DAY LONG!!

Jim Black

Jim grew up around Detroit, but moved so much as a kid that he can claim different home towns based on his mood. He attended Northwest University and graduated in 2003 with a degree in Christian Education with a focus on Children’s Ministry. He has been on staff at Horizons since 2003.

Jim attended church occasionally as a kid, but didn’t become a follower of Jesus until high school. Knowing what a difference faith could have made in his earlier years, he has dedicated his life to serving kids and their parents. He believes there is nothing more important to our world than families that are fueled by the love of God and love for each other.

Jim and his wife, Mikki, a middle school teacher in Stafford, have two grown kids and too many dogs.

Favorite Bible verse: Jeremiah 1:7-8. It meant something different to me when I was young and felt unqualified for what I was called to do. Now, it is a great reminder of the power God has to work in the lives of the kids I serve.

Favorite thing to do within 100 miles of Stafford: The beach. Staring at waves while ignoring a good book is a great way to spend a day.

Worst job you ever had: Door-to-door vacuum salesman in Detroit.

Show you are most likely to binge watch: Whatever is on Turner Classic Movies. Doesn’t matter what, as long as it’s made before movies were in color. Screwball comedies from the 30’s & 40’s are at the top of the list.

The most unusual item in your desk drawer: Mr. T action figure.

Jen Kenney

Administrative Assistant

Jen is originally from Northern Nevada and spent a small amount of her childhood in Northern California. Up until 2012, she would have said her home was Kansas City, MO, as that is where she and her husband felt the most connected to community. Now, she says her home is Stafford, VA, where her family has been attending Horizons Church since September 2011. Having moved more times than she could count as a child, it wasn’t hard to become a Marine Corps spouse and relocate every 2 to 3 years. She has moved 10 times in the past 19 years!

Why does she work at Horizons? Because she loves being connected to community and church; especially to military families! While working in DC in 2011, she had the desire to work closer to her children and to be more connected to our church family. At that time, she had no idea she would be called into ministry as the Administrative Assistant of Horizons. She came on staff in June 2013.

Jen and her husband, John, have three kids.

Favorite Bible verses: A few of my favorite verses are Philippians 4:13, 1 Corinthians 10:31 and 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. Philippians reminds me that I am not alone, I can do all things through Him because He strengthens me to. 1 Corinthians reminds me that in everything I do, I must remember to glorify Him and always to love the way He loves.

Favorite thing to do within 100 miles of Stafford: Most people say they love going to the beach… I am not one of them! My favorite place to go and detach from the world would have to be the mountains! Shenandoah National Forest is a gorgeous place to visit for the day or to stay for a weekend! If you haven’t checked it out yet, plan a trip to drive Skyline Drive, trust me, you won’t be disappointed.

Proudest accomplishment: My marriage is the one accomplishment I am proudest of. Through PCS moves, TAD trips, trainings, deployments, children, jobs, etc., we are still happily together! That’s quite the accomplishment!

Show you are most likely to binge watch: I could sit for hours and hours watching “Once Upon a Time.” Don’t judge me!

Shane Maze

Worship Pastor

Shane Maze grew up in Sugar Grove Pennsylvania touring the country with his family band, ‘The Stuart Family’. He met his wife Brittany in 7th grade and the two were best friends from that point on. Since graduating from Bloomsburg University, Shane has been a Worship Pastor at a few different churches over the past 9 years, an Audio Engineer for BNY Productions out of Sioux City Iowa, and a founding member of the band, ‘Good Little Giants’, touring around the country for the past 6 years.

Favorite Bible verse: Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Romans 12:12 (ESV).

Favorite place you’ve ever been: Zion National Park or Cancun Mexico.

Worst job you ever had: I was a night shift custodial engineer at a foam factory for two days…

On the bucket list: Visit Israel.

Show you are most likely to binge watch: The Office.

Eric Jones

Student Pastor

Eric was born and raised near Dallas Texas where he was heavily involved with church, sports, and other activities. He attends Southwestern Assemblies of God University in Waxahachie, TX where is pursuing a B.S. in Business Administration and an A.A. in Bible. After graduating in December 2018, he will pursue graduate theological education at Liberty University. 

Eric met his wife, Jessika, at SAGU where they have worked together in youth ministry in Texas for the past couple years. He enjoys running, reading, hanging with others, and talking theology. Some of the authors that he enjoys are Ta-Nehisi Coates, N.T. Wright, and Mark Twain. However, the most important fact about Eric is he loves good coffee… not Starbucks. 

Favorite Bible Verse: Psalm 91

Favorite Place I’ve Been: Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Talk about beautiful weather!

Worst Job you ever had: CutCo Cutlery Salesman – I had to sell really expensive knives to people. I started and stopped with my grandmother. I only made $16. Worst. Job. Ever.

On My Bucket List: Visit the 50 states / Become a collegiate professor / serve over-seas / Retire by 60 as a professor.

Show I am Most likely to Binge Watch: Anything in the scope of crime investigation. I secretly want to hunt bad guys in 40 minute time spans.

Steve

Facilities Director

Favorite Bible verse: Matthew 6:33 “Seek first the kingdom of God and above all else, love righteously, and He will give you everything you need.”

Coolest/Best place you’ve ever been: New York City before Christmas in 2005. It was our 25th wedding anniversary.

What thing do you do better than most: I don’t know that I am better, but I’m known as the storyteller on my family.

What is your greatest accomplishment/What are you most proud of: Being happily married to my wife for almost 37 years, and raising a Godly son. Glory to God.

On theBucket list: To build one more muscle car.