2022 Appointments

Appointments effective July 1, except where noted.

Go to summary listing

Sorted by Announced Date


Han to Serve Corry First UMC

Announced: 03-14-2021
About Duk Hee Han
Duk Hee, an ordained elder, was born in 1966 and brought up in a small country village in Korea as the youngest of three sons. His parents, devout Christians, were the most important influence on his character. Although they were farmers in the countryside, they implanted conviction and courage to practice the love of Jesus Christ in his life by means of their examples. Duk Hee graduated from the Methodist Theological University in 1993 with a degree in theology. He then earned his master’s degree from Wesley Divinity School in 1998, and his doctorate degree in ministry from Union Theological Seminary in 2001.

While at college, Duk Hee not only concentrated on accumulating academic knowledge, but also, along with some friends, devoted himself to helping the underprivileged such as orphans, blind children and tuberculosis patients. After graduation, he engaged in mission work in Zambia, Africa. It was a valuable time for him to establish his own conviction and philosophy about overseas mission based on the Incarnation of Jesus Christ. He was convinced that effective mission depends on the ability of the missionary to absorb other cultures and thought and establish good partnerships by mixing with the local people. After a year in Zambia, he changed his mission field to the Philippines in 1995. While earning his doctorate there, he taught Christian Leadership and Church Administration at Wesley Divinity School for a year. Through his teaching experience, he further developed his own leadership skills and came to better understand the importance of respecting others' standpoints in trying to carry out God's mission effectively in foreign countries. His eight years of experience in working with different people in Zambia and the Philippines as a missionary provided him with proficiency in English and enthusiasm for serving God's people regardless of gender, race, nation, color, and possessions. 

In 2002, Rev. Han came back to Korea to serve a local church with about 1,000 members as an associate pastor. While serving that church, he was asked if he was interested in serving a church in the Western Pennsylvania Annual Conference, which had a sister relationship with the Central Annual Conference of the Korean Methodist Church. As a result, he received an appointment from Bishop Hae Jong Kim to serve a local church here and has been privileged to serve God through the UMC since 2004. As a pastor in America for 16 years, he has really enjoyed working with God’s people and learned a lot about culture, ministry, mission and administration which he believes will help him in leadership in his future ministry.

Duk Hee married his soulmate Eun Young in 1999. She majored in music education and piano at Ho Seo University in Korea. She had served her own church in Chunan, Korea for 10 years as a pianist before she was united with Duk Hee. They has two sons: Kyu Hyung, 20, a sophomore in college, and Kyu Hyek, 17, a senior in high school. They like sports, music, and art. Kyu Hyung plays violin and Kyu Hyek plays cello and both can speak Korean and English. Duk Hee likes singing, spending time with family and friends, gardening, and playing golf.
About Corry First United Methodist Church
Corry First is a congregation that has a long history of sharing the Good News locally, regionally, and internationally. The church has a desire to serve the community with the love of Jesus. This happens in partnership with other churches and Christian ministries in the area, valuing the unity that comes in the family of God. The church has a passion for international and local missions, providing significant prayer and financial support each year, including an annual Missions Conference.
Worship of Jesus flows through services in different styles, but with the common goal of empowering people to praise God. The many ministries of the church help people to know Jesus, grow in their love of him, and walk in obedience to him. The youth ministry reaches out into the community. It not only serves students in the congregation, but also helps many in the community know Jesus who never would have followed him otherwise.
Rev. Han’s education and experience in helping persons discover their spiritual gifts and employ them in service make him well suited for the leadership of Corry First.  The congregation’s stated goal of involving lay persons in ministry and continuing its heritage of supporting global ministry match with many of Duk Hee’s particular strengths. 

Hernan Appointed to Johnstown Belmont UMC

Announced: 03-14-2021
About Robert Hernan
Rev. Rob Hernan was born and raised in Franklin and nurtured in the faith by Franklin First UMC. He served as president of the local UMYF and the Franklin District Youth, as a youth delegate to annual conference, and in various offices in the Conference Youth.  After graduating from Franklin Area High School in 1985, Rob attended Clarion University where he was active in theatre and earned a BA in Humanities.  He continued at Clarion as a graduate student in English composition, but left the program to finally answer a call to ministry and go to seminary.  
Rob graduated with an M.Div. from The Methodist Theological in Ohio.  He was ordained an elder in 2001 and has served 13 churches on five charges—including four years as a student pastor in Ohio. He has served since 2011 at Smethport UMC, and since  2017 also has been pastor of Crosby UMC. Rob served briefly of the Conference Connectional Table, taught at Lay Speaking School in the Franklin and Kane districts, served on the Board of Olmsted Manor, and has been involved in camping ministries at Camp Allegheny and Wesley Woods.
Rob is an avid reader and cinephile.  He also has a passion for writing poetry (especially haiku), hymns, and liturgy. Two of his responsive readings were published in the “Worship & Song” hymnal supplement.  Rob also love preaching, teaching, and putting his gifts and graces to work for the reign of God.
Rob is married to Bridgot, a fellow graduate of Clarion, and they have three college-age children: Shelby, a graduate student at Pitt; Alie, an undergrad at Mom and Dad’s alma mater; and Cabot, who plans to attend Mercyhurst in the Fall.  They also have a very big white dog and a fairly small black cat. 
About Johnstown: Belmont United Methodist Church
Belmont UMC is located in the Richland area of the city of Johnstown. They are a loving church with a family atmosphere. Their  mission statement is to strive to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ and to bring people into a saving relationship with him; nurture the spiritual growth of the congregation and serve as Christ would in meeting the spiritual and physical needs of our community and world.
Belmont has historically been a mission-minded congregation, contributing to both local and global mission projects, everything from the local food bank to United Methodist missionaries around the world. The one constant for many years has been Operation Christmas Child. The church fills hundreds of shoeboxes every year and serves as a local collection center for organizations to bring their shoe boxes. We look forward to increasing our contribution to this wonderful cause every year.

Kolacz Appointed to Blacklick Community

Announced: 03-14-2021
About Julie Kolacz
Rev. Julie S. Kolacz is a native of Venango County, where she started her journey as disciple of Jesus Christ at the age of eight by attending Sunday school and church in Pleasantville.  Pastor Julie graduated from Grove City College where she majored in psychology and religion. She holds a M.S. in community counseling from Georgia State University and a M.Div. in pastoral counseling from Ashland Theological Seminary.
Her ministry with the UMC began in 1999 when she was hired as a director of Christian education.  Shortly thereafter, she was a director of youth ministry.  She has pastored local churches since 2005, primarily in rural communities and most recently in Oil City, PA.  Julie has 10 years of experience serving as a part-time chaplain at Meadville Medical Center (extension ministry).  She has worked as a mental health therapist in various community settings. Pastor Julie was ordained as an elder in 2016.
Julie’s passion in ministry is bringing healing and wholeness to the body of Christ through preaching, teaching, pastoral counseling, and discipleship. In her free time, she enjoys the beauty of nature and recreational activities – hiking, cycling, kayaking, and physical fitness.
Julie has a son, John Stephen, a cadet in training at Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Virginia.  Additionally, there is Bandit, her Shih Tzu canine companion.
About Blacklick Community United Methodist Church
Blacklick Community United Methodist Church is located in Southern Indiana County in a pleasant valley along the Blacklick Creek and is part of the Johnstown District. Blacklick is a community of families whose ancestors have been in the in the area since the 1830s.  Many have very deep roots, both in the area and the church. 

This family of believers have open hearts that reach out to meet many needs.  They provide an after-school program for elementary grades, a pre-school, are active in the Backpack lunch program and other activities with the local school.   They have a heart for missions, both locally and nationally.   There is a very active Sunday school program for children through teenagers.  They also open up for many participants from the community with a game dinner, lawn fest, and VBS.  One of their big projects is collecting and sending out the Christmas Shoe boxes.  A heart for God’s work is strong in this congregation.

Sholtis To Serve Connellsville Cooperative Parish

Announced: 03-14-2021
About Mark A. Sholtis
Mark A. Sholtis, who has been appointed to the Connellsville Cooperative Parish since 2018, will continue serving in retirement as pastor of Normalville and Pennsville after reaching mandatory retirement age this year. 

Pastor Mark began ministry at Pleasant Hill United Methodist Church in November of 2002 as pulpit supply under lead Pastor Rev. Dr. Marvin Watson after completing the requirements of Certified Lay Speaker. He began serving at Normalville UMC in 2003.  With a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Penn State University, he formerly owned and operated an electronics communication and equipment company.

Responding to God’s call on his life, he completed Licensing School and enrolled in the United Methodist Course of Study, taking classes at Buffalo, NY Extension of Wesley Theological Seminary and the Appalachian Local Pastor’s School (A.L.P.S.) extension of Emory's Candler School of Theology in Barbourville, KY. He completed required classes in 2014, but chose to remain a Local Pastor serving his Lord Jesus Christ in his home area rather than entering the itinerancy process. His pastoral gifts include visiting and comforting the sick, grieving, and aging; singing praises to God in various settings, and evangelizing the good news of Jesus wherever possible.
Rev. Sholtis was married in Christ to the love of his life, Karen D. (Smith) Sholtis in July 1979. Retired from teaching in the Connellsville Area School District after 35 years, Karen serves as Connellsville District Lay Leader. The couple has enjoyed teaching together in the Connellsville District Lay Servant School. 

Pastor Mark and Karen celebrate their God-blessed life with their children and their spouses and three glorious grandchildren, along with numerous extended family. They enjoy gardening, beekeeping and outdoor recreation, especially on the Yough River Trail.
About Connellsville Cooperative Parish
The churches of the Connellsville Cooperative Parish, formed in 2018, serve communities around the Connellsville Area School District. They include Albright in Connellsville; Calvary in Acme; Davistown: Indian Head; Greenwood in Connellsville; Mill Run; Mount Salem; Normalville; Ohiopyle; Otterbein, Connellsville; Pennsville; Pleasant Hill; Wesley, Connellsville; and Wesley in  Dunbar. Pastor Mark will primarily serve Normalville and Pennsville UMCs.

Normalville:  As early as 1825 the Rev. James Green Sansom occasionally preached at the house of Solomon Kern.  A class was formed and preaching services were held in the schoolhouse.  In 1844 a society was formed and a house of worship was built.  In the fall of 1863 it was consumed by fire lit by the hands of an incendiary, which was refused the hand of fellowship owing to his failure to observe its ordinances.  Again the meetings were held in schoolhouses and in the United Brethren Church until a new frame church as build in 1881.

 Pennsville:  The first class meeting (United Evangelical) was organized February 10, 1897 with 16 members.  First services were held in the brick Union Meeting House.  The Little Church on the Hill was dedicated in October 1899.

Bobin to Serve Heckathorn

Announced: 03-07-2021
About Jeffrey Bobin
Jeff Bobin is a graduate of Mohawk High School in Lawrence County. He earned Bachelors degrees in  Accounting/Business Administration from Geneva College and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Robert Morris. After working in business and teaching, he answered the call to ministry and earned a Master of Divinity degree from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.

Jeff currently serves the Littles Corners charge in the Erie-Meadville District. He has served appointments in Butler, Beaver, Erie and Crawford counties and also served eight years on Conference staff as the first facilities manager.

Bringing strong preaching and teaching skills along with a love for storytelling, Jeff works hard to make the Bible come alive in today’s culture. Because of his varied experience, he is known for building connections and helping churches, pastors and people find resources. An avid reader who loves to learn across many disciplines, he also enjoys photography, public speaking and loves baseball.

Jeff is married to Kerry and they have three children and two granddaughters scattered around Western PA. Kerry is a registered nurse. She loves to sew, especially quilting. The couple likes to travel and explore history together.
About Heckathorn United Methodist Church
Heckathorn UMC is located in rural Venango County in the Franklin District. The congregation is very focused on community outreach and mission. It is part of the UM Christar Cluster, which sponsors local work-camp missions and the “Truly FreeSkate” outreach at a local skating rink, allowing families in the community to enjoy free roller skating with Christian fellowship and learning. The church also serves as a site for a summer feeding program for area school children and is a partner in the local food pantry. 

Heckathorn UMC offers WOW (Worship our Way) for elementary age children, and has an active Sunday School program, a weekly Bible Study and many fellowship opportunities.

Golla to Serve Friedens: Pleasant Hill

Announced: 03-07-2021
About James T. Golla
James Golla was born in Pittsburgh, PA and raised in Gibsonia, PA. He attended Mount Vernon Nazarene University in Ohio, where he earned a Bachelor’s of Arts in Pastoral Ministry and a Master of Ministry degree. He earned his Master of Divinity degree at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. While living in Ohio, he worked with youth at First Church of the Nazarene and assisted the chaplain at Knox County Hospice. During seminary he served at Christ Community United Methodist Church in Butler as the Director of Connectional Ministries, and also worked for a furniture refinishing shop.  

His first appointment, in 2016, was to the Shawnee Charge in Bedford County, where he currently serves. The Shawnee Charge is made up of Manns Choice, Buffalo Mills, and Helixville UMCs. He currently serves on the Conference Young Adult Council.

In ministry, James loves meeting and coming alongside people in their faith journeys. He is passionate about teaching Scripture and theology. His gifts for ministry include: Prophet, knowledge, teaching, and pastoring.

James and his wife Dana are the parents of two sons, Eben and Lucas, and a daughter Sophie. They are an active family and enjoy sports and outdoor activities. In addition to family activities, he loves spending time getting to know new people. He appreciates conversations on a wide range of various topics and also enjoys reading theological books and commentaries.

About Pleasant Hill UMC, Friedens
The Pleasant Hill UMC, standing on the outskirts of both Friedens and Somerset, is a small/moderate church which proudly proclaims Jesus as Lord! The history of the church spans from the 1800’s as a little country church. The congregation has grown in numbers and the building grew accordingly, with the current Sanctuary and Fellowship Hall being completed in 1972. The importance of this history is maintained in the display outside the Fellowship Hall.

The congregation has included business owners and blue-collar workers. Many have been independent thinkers, conservative in theology and traditional in values, serving as God’s people where they live, work, and play. This goal is close to their hearts and in their minds. Pleasant Hill members say what they mean and expect the same from their pastor. They do not just talk the talk!

While the church membership is aging, it includes some younger families and about 15 young children. While traditional in values, and occasionally stubborn, Pleasant Hill is filled to the brim with love. In this congregation, love trumps differences, though to be sure, they sometimes need to be reminded! When someone is in crisis, when a call goes out for support, Pleasant Hill shows up. Its thriving men’s group, the Hubert Group, collects funds for the needy in the surrounding communities, while sponsoring fundraisers to supplement individual needs. In addition, the church faithfully donates to the surrounding community through seventeen community missions, including Ramps-R-Us; the Gideons; Salvation Army; and Prison Ministry. Over and above, every year Pleasant Hill participates in yearly missions and work efforts at nearby Camp Allegheny, Habitat for Humanity, and the Somerset Towers.

In the last seven years, Pleasant Hill has spent considerable effort updating the facility, to create more user-friendly spaces such as the Activities Hall.  Electronics and audio/visual equipment have been updated along with  tables, chairs, racks, storage and restrooms.

Melody Kimmel to Serve Meadowlands/Houston Charge

Announced: 03-07-2021
About Melody Kimmel
Rev. Melody L. Kimmel was born in Meadville and raised in Kingsville, Ohio, just 15 minutes from Lake Erie. She graduated from South Ridge Christian Academy and earned a Bachelor of General Studies with a concentration in psychology and sociology from Kent State University, and a Master of Divinity from Methodist Theological School in Ohio. Before entering seminary, she worked in retail and the home health field.

Currently serving the United in Christ Charge (Canonsburg First/Meadow Lands/Fawcett) in the Washington District, Pastor Melody previously was appointed to New Covenant Charge (Parker First/Perryville/Callensburg/West Freedom), Clintonville Charge (Clintonville Grace/Rankin Chapel/Peters Chapel), and Robinson Memorial Chapel, all in Franklin District. Melody has a passion for youth and for preaching the Word of God.

Pastor Melody is a part of a clergy couple. Her husband Jim serves West Washington and Jefferson Avenue United Methodist churches in Washington, PA.  Apart from ministry. Pastor Melody’s passions include spending time with her family, swimming and playing board games with friends.
About Meadowlands/Houston Charge
The newly formed Meadow Lands/Houston First UM Charge includes two churches along the I-79/PA519 corridor in the Washington District. Rev. Kimmel currently serves the United in Christ Charge, which includes the Meadowlands church. 

First UMC in Houston has strong lay leadership and is active in ministries in outreach and community ministry. They have supported ministries with homeless people, local feeding ministries, and ramp-building ministries.  They have an active United Methodist Women's group, small groups, Bible studies, Sunday School, and Vacation Bible School.  

Meadow Lands UMC is a smaller-membership church which supports mission and outreach. They have Sunday School and Bible study, support a local food pantry and area shelters.

Tickle to Serve Murrysville First UMC

Announced: 03-07-2021
About Jack Tickle
Pastor Jack Tickle (a/k/a PJ) is a lifelong United Methodist who attending Holiday Park UMC while growing up. PJ has a BS from Slippery Rock University in Communications: Emerging Tech and Multimedia with a focus on AV. He graduated from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in 2013 with a Master of Divinity.

While in seminary, PJ interned at Holiday Park UMC as a children’s and young adult minister. He later served as the youth minister of Irwin First UMC, then as a Provisional Elder at South Greensburg UMC before moving north to serve the Fairview/Lake City Charge, where he currently is appointed.

Pastor Jack has been married for 11 years to his partner in ministry, Carolyn Tickle. Carolyn has a career as a physical therapist. She always finds ways to grow new ministry areas and help either start new small groups or to assist established groups to thrive.

PJ and Carolyn have two daughters, Chelsea, 6, and Bianca, 4, who both love Jesus and being part of a church community. Their favorite thing in the world is when they get “Jesus Bread” or as most know it, Holy Communion.

PJ is very passionate about finding creative ways to reach people where they are, encouraging others to answer their unique callings to serve in Christ, and working with people of all ages. He is a strong believer in living an active faith as part of a community of faith. It brings him great joy to work with a congregation to discern its calling and find ways to keep the mission of making disciples central to all aspects of church ministry.
About Murrysville First United Methodist Church
First UMC in Murrysville was founded in 1832. Like their church building, the congregation has changed over the years. What started as a small community church servicing a rural location has grown over the years to become a large church in a suburban neighborhood. During that time, the congregation was known as a large church with the feel of a small church due to its friendliness, as well as a common root: Many members worked for the same employer, Westinghouse.

As the culture and employment profile of the area changed, First UMC Murrysville morphed as well. Now a small-to-mid-sized church within the Conference, they have become a praying church focused on outreach. With a solid core of small groups, the congregation is dedicated to reaching out to the neighborhood, as well as U.S. and international causes. The highly educated congregation has encouraged leadership growth both spiritually and managerially. First UMC Murrysville is a friendly, inviting congregation that is fiscally conservative, and socially more centrist. Their goal is making disciples, and their theology is based on biblical foundations.

First UMC Murrysville has a strong preschool that has enabled them to nurture young families, as they teach biblical truths.  Geographically in the center of town, the church takes part in community events such as the harvest parade, food drives, community days, Christmas tree lighting, Stop Hunger Now, and the community library day of reading.

Wagner to Serve Allison Park: St. Paul's

Announced: 03-07-2021
About Amy Wagner
Rev. Amy Wagner grew up in Western Pennsylvania and also has lived in Lexington, KY and Chicago, IL. She holds a Master’s Degree in Christian Ethics from Loyola University, Chicago; an M.Div. from Asbury Theological Seminary, and a B.A. from Grove City College.

Before ordination, Amy worked briefly in public relations, then at a home for pregnant teenage girls and at a Chicago homeless shelter. She served under appointment on the Northern Illinois Conference staff; as pastor of Coraopolis UMC; and, since 2014, as Director of Congregational Development & Revitalization for the Western PA Conference. Amy contributed to ASK: Faith Questions in a Skeptical Age, an 8-week study released in 2015 and served on the WPAUMC Board of Ordained Ministry, including four years as co-chair. 

Her gifts for ministry include leadership and preaching, and she describes herself as a strategic, contemplative, hopeful bridge-builder. Amy is wife to Rob, a corporate litigator and patent attorney, and mom to Joseph and Grace (plus their furry four-legged buddy, Rosie).
About Allison Park: St. Paul's
Founded in 1967, St. Paul’s UMC of Allison Park is a large, multi-staff congregation in the North Hills of Pittsburgh. Their vision is: St. Paul’s will be an inclusive, diverse church, loving others according to the teachings of Jesus, and working for justice and peace in our world.

Worship, discipleship, outreach and mission are the core values of St. Paul’s, lived out through multiple worship experiences, small group classes and studies for all age groups, international mission trips and jail ministries. The Childcare, preschool, and Kidz Korner programs nurture close to 500 children weekly.

The vital music ministry includes instrumental and choral groups and a praise band.  Essential for the continued growth of the church are energetic Sunday and mid-week ministries for children and youth.  Pastoral and lay-led care ministries include a Care Team, Spiritual Development Team, and Stephen Ministry Team.

A “Working for Justice” ministry engages persons in social justice efforts in accordance with the gospel. An Interfaith collaboration includes relationships with the Jewish and Muslim communities in the North Hills. St. Paul's is truly a church of “Open Minds, Open Hearts, and Open Doors,” and a welcoming congregation for all persons, in accordance with the teachings of Jesus.

Williams to Serve Ridgway-Johnsonburg

Announced: 03-07-2021
About Matthew Williams
Rev. Matthew Williams was raised in Cambria County in the small town of Loretto, PA.  He attended college at Saint Francis University and earned his degree in Biology, Pre-Medicine in 2015.  In 2018, he graduated from Drew University Theological School with a Master of Divinity degree.  He is currently a Provisional Elder and is up for ordination as a Full Elder in 2021.  

Rev. Matt has a passion for building connections with the community, church revitalization, and mission work.  He served as the associate pastor at Ebensburg United Methodist Church from 2016 through 2017, when he was appointed to Calvary UMC in Johnstown, where he currently serves.

He is blessed to have his wife Taila and daughter Margot by his side as they walk in ministry and faith together.
About Ridgway: Trinity/Johnsonburg Charge
Trinity United Methodist Church of Ridgway is in a lovely small town offering lots of opportunities for recreation and fun on the Clarion River and Rails to Trails for walking, running or biking along the river.  The church sits in a prime location across the street from the Elk County Courthouse. The congregation is small, but members enjoy fellowship with one another and their community by organizing fundraising dinners and lunches, pumpkin roll sales, Easter egg sales, and a free annual community picnic. Children are offered a scholarship to Wesley Woods. The church also provides a meals for members recently released from the hospital.  The church has participated in Operation Christmas Child, other Christmas gift opportunities, and members volunteer to ring the bell for The Salvation Army Red Kettle.  Several members participate in Rotary and help out with VBS and a backpack giveaway program through The Salvation Army.  The church offers Sunday worship and Sunday School as well as women’s exercise classes and Bible study that are popular in the community.  

The Johnsonburg United Methodist Church is located at 5 Clarion Road, Johnsonburg, PA.  It is a small town church that is within the Pennsylvania Wilds.  In existence since the 1900's, it serves the people of the community and surrounding areas.  The church offers Sunday morning worship and Sunday School and Bible study during the week.  The congregation is involved with ecumenical VBS, UMCOR, the local food bank and any other volunteer work where needed.  The people love God and their doors are always open to any newcomer. There is excitement when visitors come.

Ewing Appointed to First Bethel

Announced: 02-28-2021
About David L. Ewing
Rev. David L. Ewing was born and raised in the Saegertown, PA  in northwestern Pennsylvania, where he graduated from Saegertown High School.  He earned a BS degree in Human Resources Management with an Economics Minor from Penn State University, and, in 2014, a Master of Divinity degree from Ashland Theological Seminary in 2014. Before becoming a student pastor in 2007, he worked as a project estimator and a general manager for companies in Erie and Meadville.

Currently serving the Blackburn, Epworth, and Greenstone UMCs in the Pittsburgh District, Pastor David previously was appointed to the Corry: Evangelical/Elgin/McCray/Wayne Valley Charge in the Erie-Meadville District. David has a passion for church renewal and community engagement. At Greenstone, the church reached out to area youth through The Cove, a faith-based after-school arts program with local and visiting artists. His primary spiritual gifts are: Leadership, Discernment/Church vision casting/innovation, Exhortation and Administration.

At the Conference level, David has served on the Parish & Community Development Committee since 2014, most recently as the chairperson.  He has also been involved in a Dismantling Racism effort, Stories and Dreams & Beyond Dreams, and in planning Campership Bike-a-thons.  He also serves on both the UM Church Union and Metowers boards.

David is married to Christina (Gevin) Ewing. Although they have no children, they have hosted three exchange students, each for a year. Both David and Christina enjoy music. Christina plays saxophone, clarinet and handbells; David plays saxophone and drums.  Both enjoy skiing and snowboarding, and David is an avid bicyclist.

About First Bethel United Methodist Church
Located in the Pittsburgh suburb of Bethel Park, First Bethel welcomes and accepts all exactly as they are. Their  goal will never be to judge a person, but to embrace and love them.

The church offers Sunday School for children and adults between two morning worship services. There are many opportunities to grow in faith beyond Sunday morning. No matter what you choose, the church meets people  where they are and helps them to take the next steps on their faith journey.

First Bethel’s congregation works hard to provide an opportunity each week for every person to experience passionate worship. There are on-going opportunities throughout the year for faith development – for means of touching lives through mission trips and community outreach – both locally, regionally, and around the world.

First Bethel Church is a spiritual home where the community joins to celebrate God – a place to be nurtured in spirit – and a family where people can find ways to serve with others in God’s love … a love that invigorates and satisfies.

Fehl to Serve Cabot UM Church

Announced: 02-21-2021
About Jonathan Fehl
Jonathan has a passion for seeing how God is moving in Western Pennsylvania and throughout the world. Between growing up as the son of an Air Force pilot and serving as a missionary in Mozambique, he has lived on four different continents. God has used those experiences to plant in him a heart for seeing all different types of people come to know Jesus.

After majoring in History and Classics at the University of Florida, he proposed to his wife Katherine on the beach in Mozambique. They relocated to Kentucky, where he earned the Master of Divinity (MDiv) and the Master of Theology in World Missions (ThM) from Asbury Seminary. When they moved to Pennsylvania, he served as associate pastor at Crossroads Church, which included leading two different Crossroads campuses in the Pittsburgh area, as well as helping develop leaders and ministries at another campus. Later, he served Bethany United Methodist Church in Latrobe and is currently serving Corry First UMC.

His ministry focuses on renewing the church’s love for the community and desire to reach those who are far from God. He has a passion for relational ministry and equipping the people of the church to do the ministry of the church locally, regionally, and internationally.

Jonathan and Katherine have two boys and two girls, ranging in age from 7 to 17.

About Cabot United Methodist Church
Cabot UMC was birthed in 1823 in a one room cabin, and blossomed and grew over nearly 200 years. The church is now located on Winfield Road in Cabot in a converted school building with a sanctuary addition built in 2014. The large double-winged building contains multiple classrooms for education, music, a food bank, a library and a large kitchen and multipurpose room with a stage.
Cabot is a loving, welcoming and close-knit congregation whose people are not only there for each other, but for their community as well. That community can be local, statewide, nationwide and worldwide, wherever the need arises. Among the many ministries are a food bank, a library open to adults, youth and children; Upward sports, Sunday school, bible studies, secret sisters, prayer shawl, Operation Christmas Child, and more. If they don’t have something, they're willing to do what it takes to get it going! The congregation's mission is to be a community life and worship center that makes disciples for Jesus Christ.

R. Cox to Serve Ringgold Charge

Announced: 02-21-2021
About Ronald E. Cox
Ronnie Cox has served as pastor of the Cooperstown Charge since July of 2019. Born and raised in the Erie area, he previously served at  Lake City First UMC and as the youth minister at Park UMC. 

A graduate of Erie First Christian Academy, he earned his Bachelor of Science Degree at Penn State's Behrend college in 2017. While at Behrend, he was involved in Campus Crusade for Christ, and under the guidance of Rev. Dan Owen, Ronnie discerned the call into pastoral ministry.

In 2017, he entered Northeastern Seminary in Rochester,NY, then transferred to Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in 2019, when he began serving the Cooperstown Charge. He expects to graduate with a Master of Divinity in 2022.

Holding to Wesleyan theology, Pastor Cox believes strongly in Christian tradition and in the power of the Spirit to work in our lives. He also believes in the power of the Means of Grace, especially in acts of Mercy. He considers his ministry and appointments to have affirmed his call to ministry and deepened his relationship with Christ and his church.

About Ringgold Charge
The Ringgold charge is comprised of  Ringgold, North Freedom and  Timblin United Methodist churches. The charge was established in the mid-to-late 19th Century with Ringgold and North Freedom. Timblin joined the charge in 2020.The churches are in Jefferson County near Punxsutawney, on the Indiana District.

Each congregation has been shaped by the history and traditions of their rural setting. They are committed to show Jesus' love to the community and the world. Each of the churches has laity leadership in their  worship services and are involved in their communities with various ministries. 

North Freedom has a community Thanksgiving Dinner each year. Their Outreach program provides medical equipment to those in need. 

Ringgold also has a community Thanksgiving Dinner. The Men in Mission and Women of Faith are active in ministries in the community and the area.
Timblin has a food pantry and an outreach to the children in its community.

Bell Appointed Full-Time PA Air National Guard Chaplain

Announced: 02-14-2021
About Jonathan R. Bell
The Rev. Dr. Jonathan R. Bell has been serving in a dual capacity as an appointed pastor in local church settings and with the military as an Endorsed United Methodist Chaplain since 2000.  This has been a tremendous blessing and afforded many unique partnership opportunities.  Most recently he has been the pastor of Good Shepherd (North Clarion) UMC in the Leeper/Tionesta area of the Kane District. 

Jonathan earned a BA degree from Allegheny College, a Master of Divinity degree from The Methodist Theological School in Ohio, and a Doctor of Ministry degree in Military Chaplaincy and Foreign/National Policy from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington DC.  He is married to Anne and they have four sons:  Reed, Jackson, Asher, and Tobin.
About Pennsylvania Air National Guard Chaplain
Jonathan move into Full-time Extension Ministry as Chaplain to the Pennsylvania Air National Guard.  Chaplain, Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan R. Bell will serve as the full-time Wing Chaplain of the 171st Air Refueling Wing, Pennsylvania Air National Guard, Coraopolis, PA.  In addition, he is the senior ranking National Guard Chaplain in the Commonwealth and serves as the Air National Guard Liaison Chaplain to the Pennsylvania Joint Force Headquarters at Fort Indiantown Gap.  In this capacity he will help to oversee the spiritual care and resilience of one of the largest, most deployed and domestically active National Guards in the nation. 

He has experience with multiple deployments in support of Operation Deep Freeze—Antarctica, Operation Noble Eagle, Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation New Dawn, and Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa. 

Heidi Helsel to Serve Marienville Charge

Announced: 02-14-2021
About Heidi L. Helsel
Rev. Heidi M. Helsel has served as pastor of the Calvary United Methodist Church in Windber, PA, since July 1, 2017. Two years later, in July, 2019, Calvary became part of a three-church charge, yoking the Central City and Shanksville United Methodist churches together under her leadership.

 Rev. Helsel earned her Master of Divinity degree from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in 2012.  She also holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Biology from St. Vincent College, and an Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education from Westmoreland County Community College. She has earned continuing education credits with emphasis in church revitalization.

A life-long United Methodist, Pastor Heidi was ordained an Elder in the Western PA Conference in 2014.  She eagerly shares the Good News of Jesus Christ through her gifts for ministry, including creativity in worship, a love for outreach to the community, a deep commitment to servant leadership, and above all, a passionate faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. 

Pastor Heidi is part of a clergy couple; her husband Rick serves the Somerset: Pleasant Hill United Methodist Church. Pastors Heidi and Rick are blessed with two beautiful, talented teenaged daughters, Sarah and Christina. Their household also includes three cats and a German Shepherd dog.

Apart from ministry, Pastor Heidi’s passions include family time, gardening and photography.

About Marienville Charge
Marienville United Methodist Charge includes three churches: Marienville, a small membership church with a big heart on the fringes of the beautiful Allegheny National Forest in Marienville, PA; Greenwood UMC, a beautiful small country church not far from the prestigious virgin pines of the Cook Forest State Park, and Tylersburg UMC, a small church established in 1900 in rural Tylersburg on St. Route 36.

The churches work with others in the area to support local food banks, ecumenical services and events at Thanksgiving and during Lent, and participate in community events such as Oktoberfest. Greenwood UMC holds a popular annual Strawberry Festival. All three also support local and national mission agencies and ministries, such as the Kane District ramp ministry and the Ruth M. Smith Center. They also open their doors for community groups and events. 

Rick Helsel to Serve Good Shepherd UMC

Announced: 02-14-2021
About Richard Helsel
Rev. Rick Helsel is from Braddock, Pennsylvania, attended St. Vincent College for a BS is Psychology and earned his M.Div at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. He has a continuous hunger to see the church united on Christ Jesus as Lord. It is his desire, his center and his being to witness the church withstanding our divisive culture, and, rather than being a mirror of the secular world, be the example to which the world conforms because we are conformed to Christ.

Rick has 25 years of experience in ministry and currently serves as pastor of Pleasant Hill UMC in Friedens.
He is married to the Rev. Heidi Helsel and they have two daughters, Sarah and Christina.
About Good Shepherd UMC, North Clarion
Good Shepherd (North Clarion) United Methodist Church takes seriously the call to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.  They welcome people to come as they are and to feel God’s love in a new and refreshing way as part of the Good Shepherd family!  The congregation has been worshiping at its current location since 1989, but its however roots run deeper than that.  Discussions of merging congregations in the area to form a station church began in 1968 when the merger of the Methodist and Evangelical United Brethren churches formed The United Methodist Church. 

Good Shepherd United Methodist Church was formed in 1986 in a merger of Leeper Covenant, Lickingville, and Washington United Methodist churches.  As noted on the cornerstone wall, this church and our forebears have had a spiritual presence here in our community since the mid 1800’s.  Many lives, dreams, and prayers have been involved in establishing the historic and current ministry of this congregational family. 

The “Church in the Cornfield” is known for a caring community focus.  We pray that The Good Shepherd continues to grow us in the Holy Spirit, root us firmly in Christ’s Love, and empower us to joyfully and fruitfully carry out God’s ministry into our community well into the future.

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