It’s been less than four years since they first set foot in Chapel, but the Kickasola’s have quickly become a big part of our church’s family.
Erin was born in Wilmington, DE, but spent most of her life living in Greenville, SC. She grew up in a PCA home and was encouraged by her parents to pursue many interests. As a child she was involved in church/youth group activities, theater, swimming, basketball and soccer. One of the things that she remembers most about her childhood is a mission trip to France when she was 14. “I felt so old at the time, but I can’t believe my parents let me do that at such a young age!” It was an important part of her childhood that she continued as she got older – revisiting France a few years later and also traveling to New Mexico and Boston for mission trips. And evangelism wasn’t just for abroad; Erin also spent multiple summers working for Child Evangelism Fellowship.
Matt was born in Ohio and moved to Virginia Beach as a child. He was a “jock,” playing both basketball and soccer, but was also involved in theater and chorus. Mission trips were also an important part of Matt’s childhood. He spent several summers going to Kenya and Russia.
Both Erin and Matt were thankful to be raised in Christian homes and receive Christian educations, all the way through college where they met. Erin went to Covenant College in Georgia, majoring in business with a concentration in accounting. Matt is also a Covenant graduate and majored in music with a math minor. Both were very active in the music department which is where there friendship blossomed. Matt and Erin met for the first time while Erin was visiting the school as a high school senior (Matt was a freshman at the time). They were introduced through mutual friends, but it wasn’t until a couple years later when Matt was a junior and Erin a sophomore that their relationship became more serious.
Shortly after Erin graduated from Covenant, the pair were married on June 24, 2000, at Erin’s home church in Greenville. During their first two years of marriage, the couple lived in Philadelphia while Matt was a graduate student at Temple – the beginning of a self-proclaimed addiction to graduate work! Erin worked as a tax accountant for a petroleum company in New Jersey. When Matt’s graduated work was completed at Temple, the Kickasola’s moved to Missouri for Matt to complete his doctoral work in Historical Musicology at Washington University in St. Louis. Erin continued working as a tax accountant in St. Louis for the investment firm Edward Jones.
It was in St. Louis that their family doubled in size. Matt and Erin became first-time parents in 2008 when Andrew was born and Micah became baby brother in 2011. In July, 2012, Matt was provided the opportunity to join the Music facility at Geneva College and the family moved to Beaver Falls. Andrew, now 7 and in first grade at BCCS, is a die-hard St. Louis Cardinals fan, loves playing baseball and soccer and has started following in his musical parents’ footsteps with piano lessons. Micah, who is 4, is a happy preschooler who has a thirst for knowledge and loves hanging out with his big brother.
Because both Matt and Erin were raised in PCA churches, their search for a new church home when they moved to PA started within the denomination. The Lord brought them to Chapel and the Kickasola’s (and our church family!) has been richly blessed because of it. Matt and Erin are active in choir, teaching Sunday School, and helping with the college ministry. Matt will begin serving on session as an elder this spring and Erin was recently hired as the part-time Director of Children’s Ministry.
In the more than 15 years Matt and Erin have been married, they’ve had the opportunity to visit many beautiful places around the world – England, Scotland, New York, Seattle, Chicago, Cozumel, even Eastern Europe for a tour with Chamber Choir while in college. Their favorite trip was a recent one to the Grand Canyon the family took with Erin’s brother and wife. They traveled to the southwestern US visiting the Grand Canyon, Mesa Verde, Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon, Arches and many other sites. It reminded them that “our God is big, yet the hairs on our head are numbered!”
Through all their travels around the globe, I think its safe to say that Chapel is very thankful that the Lord brought the Kickasola family to settle in Beaver County!