Carl Bickel is a graduate of Lake Forest College in Illinois. He holds graduate theological degrees from Union Theological Seminary in New York City (M.Div., S.T.M.) and the University of Chicago (M.A.), and an M.S. and Ph.D. in pastoral counseling from Loyola College in Maryland. Carl served churches in the New York City and Chicago areas and was a campus minister at the University of Illinois before coming to Bowie. He is the husband of Christian educator Shirley Bickel. The Bickels are the parents of three sons, a daughter, and nine grandchildren.
After a lengthy illness, Carl Bickel passed away on February 11, 2006. He served as Pastor for the United Parish for over 32 years.