Senior Pastor

Reverend Dr. Elon J. Sylvester

Reverend Elon Sylvester has served in an exemplary manner in all his appointments. He has faced the challenges of ecclesial leadership with courage and demonstrates good management skills, exceptional pastoral care of his parishioners, and superior wisdom and skill in improving his growing edges as an elder.

Pastor Sylvester and his wife, Tani, are the parents of four beautiful children who are all actively engaged in ministry.  They are Aphia, Sage, Elania, and Jaiden.

Prior to his present appointment as senior pastor at Westbury United Methodist Church (UMC), he pastored the Bellmore United Methodist Church.  While there, he labored with the congregation in transitioning the worship experience into a blend of traditional and contemporary modes in order to enhance the congregational appeal of its fast-changing community.  He along with the congregation engaged in extensive construction projects to renovate their facilities. 

Before his service at Bellmore, Rev. Sylvester was the founding pastor of The One Foundation Ministries (TOFMin). In conjunction with his wife, Tani, and other colleagues, they converted their pre-existing neighborhood Bible study/Prayer group into a New Church Start in the Bronx/Westchester area.  Pastor Elon was commissioned as a lay minister in 2012 to lead that highly active, nascent congregation.  This he did for over three years.  The new church grew into a thriving faith community with structured auxiliaries like a Single’s Ministry, A Women’s Ministry, Audio Visual/Music Ministry, and a Broadcasting Ministry from which they hosted a weekly two-hour radio program on Saturday mornings called The Saturday Sunrise Program.

Pastor Elon has often gone beyond the call of duty to be a value-added presence in his various appointments.  He has integrated his secular knowledge and skills in the construction trades to assist his and other congregations with many of their facility maintenance issues which saved the churches large amounts of cash and allowed them to perform facility improvements that they would otherwise have deferred for lack of funds.  He has responded to calls from other pastors to assist in emergency facility maintenance situations. 

The Sylvesters are passionate about ministry and pursue every opportunity to do service for God, and for their community.  They are deeply concerned about social justice issues and are actively engaged in developing extra-ecclesial ministries which assist marginalized people and persons exiting the correctional system to be reintroduced into the workforce by offering in-field training in various professional trades. This secular assistance coupled with the discipline of spirituality and prayer, enables candidates to experience the transformative power of God to enable them to redefine themselves and to pursue more promising futures.

Pastor Elon has graduated from the NYPD Citizens Police Academy program.  He served in the New York City Mayor’s Clergy Liaison Program which was tasked with rebuilding the relationship between the inner-city communities and the New York Police Department. In this role, he also assisted with sensitivity training of police officers towards the needs of the people they served.

Rev. Sylvester is an Elder in full connection in the New York Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from York College; a master’s degree in Urban Policy and Administration from Brooklyn College; a Master of Divinity degree from Drew University; and a Doctor of Ministry (DMin.) degree from Drew University.  He desires to pursue excellence in anything that he puts his hands to, all to the honor and glory of God!