Our Minister & Team
Reverend Carla Maurer grew up in St.Gallen. She studied history and philosophy in Berne in 1999. During her first years as a student, Carla became particularly interested with the relations of society, church and politics in Europe and she developed a passion for Christian theology – intellectually, as well as spiritually. In 2007, Carla graduated in Reformed Theology.
She then moved to Strasbourg in France to work for the Church and Society Commission of the Conference of European Churches and became engaged in ecumenical cooperation which became an important part of her theology. Carla was a board member of the European Forum of European Christian Women (EFECW) from 2010-2014 where she coordinated the first Pop Up Monastery.
Before becoming the Minister of the Swiss Church in London in 2013, Carla worked for the Methodist Church and the United Reformed Church as executive officer on a property and mission project.
Theologians such as Teresa of Avila, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Peter Rollins, and Ruth Epting who was the first woman to be ordained in Basel and founder of the EFECW are an inspiration to her.
Carla is married to Julian Simmons, a London based record producer. They have a son, Yuvi Mark, born on 26 July 2018.
In her spare time, Carla loves to read, to take advantage of London’s rich cultural life (especially museums and theatres) or to enjoy a cool pint of ale down at the local pub. You might see her on one of her runs or stretching her body in a yoga class. In a previous life, Carla was the singer in a band. She still enjoys going to rock concerts, but she leaves the majority of her own singing to church hymns now.
Mobile phone: 07968 530 380
Josh Kelly was born in North London and although has lived in many places around the world has always called London his home. Josh trained at the Rambert School and worked as a dancer for many years. After ending his dance career, he next studied sports medicine, worked free-lance as a dancer-teacher choreographer, managed French restaurants and taught in state education.
One morning Josh realised that he had not had the chance to do all the crazy fun things that non dancers do, so he spent 18 months backpacking around the world. Enriched by this experience he returned and fell into secondary teaching. Years later, after analysing his skill sets, he recognised that he wanted to contribute meaningfully to society in a new way and so applied for the Community Worker role at the Swiss Church.
A Swiss string of events has also shaped Josh’s life. He met Emma (half Swiss) at ballet school, then her mother Vreni (Swiss) and later became godfather to Emma’s children (quarter Swiss). Much later he met his life partner David (also Swiss!) and now works for the Swiss Church in London. For a full blood Londoner that is a rather lot of coincidental Swissness!
Josh manages Breakfast On the Steps each Tuesday morning that welcomes members of the local community in need of support and sustenance. Breakfast on the Steps is for anyone in our community so feel free to join anytime between 8am and 10am!
Phone: 020 7836 1418
Office and Lettings Administrator
Emily Rose Simons is a North Londoner. She is also a composer-lyricist for musical theatre. Her work has been performed around the UK, Off-West End, Off- and Off-Off Broadway and even in Israel. Her work tends to have a strong spiritual focus, as well as feminist spine – so The Swiss Church in London feels like a very comfortable extension of her creative sensibilities.
As well as writing musical theatre, community building and religion has always had a strong presence in Emily Rose’s life. Less than six months after her Bat Mitzva (when she no longer had to attend Jewish Sunday School) she was singing in Notre Dame Cathedrale on All Saints Day with the Finchley Children’s Music Group. During her time studying Music at the University of Bristol, Emily had active roles in the Jewish Society, a regular presence at the Multifaith Chaplaincy and even her choral conducting style always focused on building a supportive community through music in each of the choirs she conducted. After university she spent a year or so reviewing synagogues for an online Jewish magazine.
Throughout and after a stint in New York, musical theatre, the arts and community are still important parts of Emily Rose’s life and she is very excited to have the next chapter of her life in some way interwoven with the next chapter of The Swiss Church in London.
Phone: 07590 879 201
Director of Music & Organist
Peter Yardley-Jones is a first-class honours graduate in music from the University of Glasgow. From 2006-2008 he was University Organ Scholar and in 2008 he was appointed Assistant Organist at St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral, Glasgow and Organist at Houston & Killellan Kirk. During his time in Glasgow, Peter studied organ with Kevin Bowyer and renowned Bach scholar, Prof. John Butt OBE. Widely respected as a performer, Peter was awarded the Muriel Thorne Hague Memorial Prize, by his University for achieving the greatest distinction in performance and in 2005 won first prize in the nationwide Geoffrey Spiers Organ Competition.
As a recitalist he has performed at many UK Cathedrals and Concert Halls and has performed on three solo USA tours, in 2010 (St Thomas, New York and Community of Christ, Missouri) and 2015 (Chicago, Rockford, Omaha, Lincoln and Kansas City). In addition Peter has been organist for several BBC Radio 2 and Radio 4 broadcasts and for BBC Television’s Songs of Praise.
Anina Smith grew up in Berne and visited London for the first time in 2004 during a gap year. In these three months she worked with her local church in Woolwich and the youth organisation XLP. Back in Switzerland she studied at the Swiss School of Tourism in Sierre/Siders before moving to London for good in September 2007. She first helped opening and running the first tibits restaurant outside of Switzerland and then joined LOCOG to deliver a successful 2012 Summer Games.
The position as Office Manager at the Swiss Church combines all her previous experiences and training as well as offering an opportunity to be linked with her home country and work in a Christian environment.
Anina is married to police constable Ricky Smith. Their son Max Noah was born on 30 November 2016.
Phone: 020 7836 1418
Swiss Church London Consistoire
The Consistoire (equivalent of a Parish Council) is the Governing Body of the Swiss Church in London and administers and manages the Swiss Church in London, its property and its internal and external affairs in accordance with the constitution.
Members of the Consistoire
Mr Peter Stäuber
President of Consistoire
President since September 2018. Member since 2017
In September 2018 Peter was appointed President of the Consistoire. He is one of three members of the leadership team. The team consists of the President, Company Secretary Natalie Chalmers, and Vice-President David Hume.
After being elected to the Consistoire in February 2017, Peter took on the job of coordinating the Swiss Church’s outreach and community work. He hopes to continue to focus on this area and make a contribution to the role of the church as an institution for the local community, as well as for the Swiss migrant population.
Peter grew up in St.Gallen, Switzerland, and moved to London in 2010. He works as a freelance correspondent, and author, and writes about anything that might be of interest to German-speaking readers – which at the moment is Brexit.
Peter first heard about the Swiss Church through Carla, who went to the same school – he’d never known such a beautiful building exists right in the centre of the city. Peter then learned more about the outreach work carried out by the church, especially to tackle homelessness, and was very impressed. As a journalist, he has seen how this issue has become ever more critical in recent years. He became more involved with this work when the church launched its ‘HomeLos’ project last year, which tries to establish a dialogue around homelessness between London and Zurich.
Mr David Hume
Member since 2015
David discovered the Swiss Church searching for a suitable hall for his community dance school which takes place every Tuesday evening. David says: “My contact with the Swiss Church has warmed my Christian faith and it seemed like fate when I was asked to become a member of the Consistoire.” His Methodist upbringing in central Manchester showed him how Christian values could help those in the community achieve fulfilling lives and he sees that affinity with the Swiss Church today.
David was working for a period in Zurich, Geneva and Basel and his son lived there for a time.
David’s aim is to assist the Consistoire build a strong governance team and develop robust fundraising strategies to ensure the long-term future of the 250 year old Swiss Church so that “Church, Community, Culture” can be enjoyed for generations to come.
Ms Nathalie Chalmers
Member since 2018
Nathalie is passionate about sustainability- both from an environmental and a human perspective. Holding three nationalities (Swiss, British and Brazilian) and having explored a lot of the world from a young age, curiosity, and concern, about how the world works was instilled early on.
With a background in international relations and environmental science and policy, Nathalie is currently leading the global marine conservation communication strategy a large environmental NGO: The Nature Conservancy. Before this, she joined the World Economic Forum and dedicated her time to bringing sustainability issues to the forefront of key global agendas. She notably developed and built out the Forum’s Circular Economy Initiative, and successfully instigated and drove its Ocean agenda. With an Executive Master’s degree in leadership, Nathalie developed keen interest in people and team development and enabling performance through balanced lifestyles.
Nathalie has experience in cross-sector partnership building, project strategy and management, C-suite level relationship management and building communication strategies that resonate across a variety of stakeholders. She is passionate about oceans and all they do for us, and enjoys spending time underwater.
Ms Katrin Voegeli
Member since 2017
Katrin grew up in Zurich and moved to London following a job opportunity in a development bank that allows her to combine her background in economics and finance with her desire to not only study but also support development and welfare improvement for people in developing countries. Based on that same wish to help and support others Katrin has also pursued engagements in social organisation to contribute to the local community for many years. She was a member of the church council in her hometown in Switzerland, so it came natural to her to continue pursuing this engagement here in London as a member of the Consisitoire at the Swiss Church and thereby contribute to the Swiss community.
In assuming responsibility over Human Resources, Katrin hopes to build on her prior experience overlooking the team of catechists and youth worker. She hopes to contribute to the Church and the Swiss Community through her background in the Reformed Church of Zurich.
Mr Marco Mambelli
Member since 2017
Marco is a financial analyst active in the Asset Management sector, currently pursuing an MBA at the Cranfield School of Management where he chairs the university’s Consulting Club. Over the past five years he has covered a number of sectors both on the equity and fixed income markets, meeting with a smorgasbord of EU-based companies and executives, and progressively moving his focus to global equity markets.
Marco is originally from Milan and over the years he has had the pleasure to visit Switzerland on numerous occasions, particularly in the Canton of Valais and had the opportunity to appreciate different facets of Switzerland’s culture and values.
Marco’s decision to join the Swiss Church stems from his desire to help the local community in London and to building and maintaining a “home away from home” both from a cultural and spiritual perspective. Marco always wanted to be part of charitable activities for the local community.
Mr Colin McIntyre
Member since 2019
Colin’s family links with the Swiss Church date back almost a century. His relatives emigrated from Neuchâtel in the 1920s, married at the Swiss Church in London, christened their children in the Church, and were members during all their lives.
Colin started attending Sunday services at the Swiss Church in 2009, following the spectacular renovation of the Church by architects Christ & Gantenbein. Gradually, he became more involved as a volunteer- in various Church social activities such as 1st August celebrations, fondue evenings, and cultural events.
From 2016 to 2018 he worked in the Church office, as maternity cover. This enabled him to acquire a broad knowledge of the challenges of managing the unique institution that is the twenty-first century Swiss Church.
Colin considers the Swiss Church to be much more than a parish Church. The renovation enabled the Church to become a social hub for the Swiss Community in London, to stage a wide variety of arts and music events, and offer commercial hire-crucial for providing income for the Church to meet the running costs of operating in a Grade 2 listed building.
Colin is keen to work with his fellow Consistoire members, Minister Carla Maurer, and all the members and friends of the Swiss Church, to create a strong and vibrant Church that we can pass on to future generations for them enjoy and cherish.
Mr Philip Maillardet
History and Archives
Member since 2009
Mrs Cécile Mistry
Member since 2009
Mr Yvon Tse
Acting Company Secretary
An accountant by profession since 1970 working both in private practice and commerce. He has had connections with Switzerland and the Swiss Church in London, since 1972 and 1985 respectively. On standby since 2012 for the role of Acting Treasurer when the Honourable Treasurer’s post is vacant and while the Trustees undergo their search for an appropriate candidate. Company Secretary in 2015.
Counsel General Mrs Manuela Ferrari
Since 2018. Ex-officio observer from the Embassy of Switzerland in the United Kingdom.