Meet Nander Novaes
Degree Program: Master of Divinity with a concentration in music ministry
Hometown: São Paulo, Brazil
I grew up in a Christian home surrounded by the sacred music repertoire of George Frideric Handel, J. S. Bach, and Charles Wesley. Both my father and my mother were music ministers at our local Methodist church in Brazil – my dad was the choir conductor, and my mom was the organist. Church was our second home. I was about five years old when I first started being guided by my parents in the paths of music, especially church music.
From a young age, I was invited by my local pastors to visit our fellow parishioners in need, to actively participate in sharing the word of God, and to lead the community in worship through music. At that time, I had already an idea of my vocational calling toward music and pastoral ministries. However, it would take many years until I could finally start embracing my calling. At the age of 18, I was appointed music director at our local church, which would lead me to represent the Methodist Church of Brazil as a worship leader at the Conference of Latin American Evangelical Methodist Churches in Buenos Aires, Argentina. That was a life-changing missionary experience, which would bring me closer to my vocational calling.
In Brazil, I was blessed to study classical music under the guidance of its most regarded mentors, first in conservatories, and later at college in Sao Paulo. Soon after college, I married my lovely wife, Ana Cláudia, and I was invited to teach and to pursue my graduate studies in music at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music.
Why did you decide to attend seminary and Garrett-Evangelical in particular?
I chose to come to Garrett-Evangelical not only because of its strong theological foundation and its renowned faculty members, but also for the genuine love I felt from the very beginning of my application process. As I have recently learned in my pastoral care class, “The motive is love!” Now that I am officially a student at Garrett-Evangelical, I can feel myself being equipped for ministry already, though I recognize there is a long way to go yet.
Where do you see Christ leading you after seminary?
With God’s help, together with the partnership of Garrett-Evangelical’s community members, I hope to return to my home country with my wife to keep spreading the transforming love of Jesus Christ through music and pastoral ministries.