2022 Appointments

Appointments effective July 1, except where noted.

Go to summary listing

Sorted by Announced Date


 

Mitchell to Serve Thorn Creek, Emory Chapel

Announced: 05-29-2022
About Amanda Mitchell
Amanda Mitchell grew up in Eastern Pennsylvania and came to Western Pennsylvania by way of Indiana University of PA where she earned a degree in Elementary Education. She was introduced to the church and to the UMC while attending Indiana Grace UMC as a college student. She served as Youth Director at Indiana Grace for five years before choosing to be a stay-at-home mom.

Amanda worked as a childcare teacher before accepting the position of Conference Coordinator of Young People’s Ministry in 2016. Through her Conference ministry, Amanda provides resources, connection, and leadership to churches and their young people. She also leads the Conference Youth Ministry Team which facilitates SPARK, Uth 4 Missions, and the Conference’s Youth Caucus.

Since 2019, she also has been the Director of Discipleship at Monroeville UMC, leading children’s ministry and chairing the preschool board. She is a certified ministry coach and loves helping clergy and church leaders to develop vision for their life and ministry. She volunteers as the co-coordinator of the NEJ Council on Youth Ministry and as a leader with her daughter’s Girl Scout troop.

Amanda is an MDiv student at United Theological Seminary where she just finished her second year. Having completed licensing school last summer, this will be her first appointment in the local church. Amanda is excited to continue her journey toward Elder’s orders and is eager to see how God will use her gifts at Thorn Creek and Emory Chapel.

She enjoys movies, reading, and spending time with her kids, Samuel and Olivia, and her dog, Captain.
 
About Thorn Creek/Emory Chapel Charge
Thorn Creek United Methodist Church, near Butler, PA, is a vital congregation with a rich history and a strong ministry. Located in the central portion of the Butler District, the congregation of Thorn Creek is devoted to worshiping God, growing in discipleship to Jesus, and building Christian community. Through their ministries of worship, Christian education, and outreach, the people of Thorn Creek help one another to walk more faithfully and attentively with Jesus. Their mission is to worship the Lord God while loving and serving all people in the name of Jesus Christ by the power of His Spirit.
 
Emory Chapel is a small and vibrant congregation in Sarver, PA, bringing significant ministry to the central portion of the Butler District. Hospitality, kindness, and faithfulness are hallmarks of the Emory Chapel congregation, and the church’s people are eager to love God with their whole heart as they grow in their love for one another and the community that they so eagerly serve. Worship services at Emory Chapel UMC have a wonderful spirit of spiritual intimacy and interactivity about them, and the people are deeply intentional about blessing one another and the surrounding community with tangible acts of ministry and kindness.
 

Gould to Serve Eastbrook, Volant UMCs

Announced: 05-15-2022
About Mary Jo Gould
Mary Jo Gould has lived in the town of Beaver most of her life. She served as a short-term missionary in Papua, New Guinea before returning to the States to work in different secular positions. 

After earning an associate degree in nursing at the Community College of Beaver County, Mary Jo worked as an RN for 11 years in the geriatric setting until being called to pastoral ministry. For the last seven years, she has served Thorncreek and Emory UMCs. During that same period, she completed both her bachelor's degree in Christian studies at Grand Canyon University and her seminary Course of Study (United Theological Seminary). She plans to continue in the Advanced Course of Study in the hopes of becoming an Associate Member or Elder.

Mary Jo loves being with family and friends, going out to eat, laughing a lot, reading a good book, enjoying nature, and sitting by the fire outside with friends. She and her husband have a wonderful son and granddaughter.  
About Eastbrook UMC/Volant UMC Charge
Located in New Castle, PA, Eastbrook UMC has a long history of vibrant ministry engagement with the community of New Castle and beyond. The fact that Eastbrook UMC has figured so prominently in the history, development, and continued stewardship of the Eastbrook Mission Barn (one of the six UMCOR Relief Supply Depots in the United States) is an illumination of the congregation’s deep missional heart and its commitment to sharing the love and ministry of Jesus with a hurting world. Eastbrook UMC is a warm, loving community of believers where worship is joyful, where discipleship to Jesus is taught and nurtured, and where the joy of spiritual growth is regularly experienced.
 
Located in the quaint borough of Volant in Lawrence County, Volant UMC is in the heart of that community’s significant network of shops, stores, and restaurants. A truly intergenerational faith community (with many young children), Volant UMC makes it a priority to provide Christian education and spiritual formation for people of all ages. Through the church’s engaging worship, intentional Bible study and small group ministry, commitment to prayer, and strategic outreach to the community, Volant UMC continues to make disciples of Jesus Christ while offering the love, truth, and ministry of Jesus to those both inside and outside of the church’s walls.
 

Straughn to Serve Butler North Charge

Announced: 05-15-2022
About Ray Straughn
Ray is a committed follower of Jesus and a Certified Lay Servant/Speaker who retired after 40 years at Du-Co ceramics. He currently works as manager of the Freeport Senior Center. For most of his life, Ray has had a sense that God had placed a calling to some kind of ministry upon his life. But he has fought that sense of calling, not knowing what such a calling would mean or require.

Throughout his life’s journey, Ray credits the mercy and grace of God for his deliverance from addiction, depression, and several self-destructive decisions. After a long period of what he describes as “major backsliding” in his faith walk, Ray eventually came back to God in repentance and holistically rededicated his life to Jesus. Ray now feels that he is now fully available to the calling of God, wherever that calling might take him.

Ray and his wife Pam live in Freeport, PA. Ray believes that he is living proof of God's love, forgiveness, mercy, and sanctifying grace.
 
 
About Butler North Charge
The Butler North Charge, which includes Boyers UMC, Eau Claire: Bethel UMC, and Hilliards UMC, continues to offer gracious and faithful ministry in northern Butler County for the cause of Jesus Christ. Through their engaging worship, their sacrificial generosity, their gracious hospitality, and their creative outreach to their communities, these three congregations bear witness to the Gospel while creating the kind of Christ-centered environment where strong friendships can be built and where all are welcome. The Butler North Charge looks forward to all that God will continue to accomplish through its ministry in the days ahead.
 

Adam Goswick to Serve Savannah UMC

Announced: 05-08-2022
About Adam Goswick
Adam was born in Pittsburgh and spent his entire life in the Western Pennsylvania Annual Conference. He has lived in Valencia, Clarion, Franklin, New Castle, and Butler, and has made New Castle his home. Adam has been part of Savannah UMC since 1997, and is joined in ministry there by his wife Denise and daughter Grace.

Adam graduated from Shenango High School in 2004 and attended Slippery Rock University, where he obtained a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. His day job is working for a federal contractor in the security and background check field, an industry he has worked in since 2008.

In his free time, Adam enjoys reading (mostly fantasy and science-fiction), watching anything relating to Star Wars, Marvel, or Disney, and spending time with his wife, daughter, and dogs (Ben and Luke). He also enjoys playing the occasional Mario, Zelda, or Metroid video game, playing his guitar, collecting baseball cards, and traveling to Disney World whenever time and money permit.
 
About Savannah United Methodist Church
Savannah United Methodist Church began as a small group meeting in homes back in 1820. For a while, the congregation met at the schoolhouse until a building could be constructed. The church building was built on Savannah Road. In the 1900s, a new building was constructed on property purchased on Savannah Gardner Road, where the present building is located.

With a long and rich history of making a difference in the lives of people in the New Castle area, the people of Savannah United Methodist Church strive to grow as disciples of Jesus Christ through participation in creative worship and consistent programs of Christian education and spiritual formation. Savannah also strives to reach out to the community at large, conveying the message of the love of Jesus Christ to those who may never have heard the message or experienced a relationship with him. “Love as Christ, Live as Christ, Serve as Christ” is the goal of each person who becomes a part of the Savannah church family.
 

Lavelle to Serve as New Castle Grace Associate

Announced: 02-20-2022
About Bill LaVelle
Bill LaVelle, a retired elder, will begin serving as a part-time associate at Grace United Methodist Ministry in New Castle on March 1, 2022.

Bill entered the candidacy process in 1981 and was ordained an elder in 1991. He served seven churches in six districts (Tucker, James Chapel, Acme, Clarion: First, Johnstown: Grove Avenue, McKnight, and Kane) until he retired in 2016. When he and Shyrl moved to New Castle, he soon began serving Wesley, and then also Epworth churches, part-time until 2020.  In those last two years he participated in forming the merger of four of New Castle’s United Methodist churches into the new Grace Ministry.  

Bill and Shyrl continue to relate to and support Grace Ministry with their prayers, their presence, their gifts, their service, and their witness. Bill has also been serving at the Eastbrook Mission Barn as Treasurer.  

Bill has quipped to his Covenant Group, which has been together since 1989, that nowadays his continuing education has come from YouTube for his and Shyrl’s DIY projects around their home. However, he continues to read and pray. He has especially been interested in the “Fresh Expression” movement, hoping that it may bring new life and strength to God’s church.
 
About New Castle Grace United Methodist Ministry
Grace United Methodist Ministry of New Castle is a vibrant faith community offering Christ-centered ministry in the Lawrence County city of New Castle and beyond.

Resulting from the 2020 merger of four New Castle churches (King’s Chapel UMC, Croton UMC, Epworth UMC, and First UMC), Grace UMM now bears witness in unique fashion to the creativity and unifying power of the Gospel. In their two campuses (one on Decker Drive, the other on Croton Avenue), Grace UMM is a church in action that prioritizes engaging worship, interactive children’s ministry, strategic outreach, and holistic spiritual formation.
 

Roscoe Appointed to Chicora, Karns City

Announced: 02-20-2022
About Beverly K. Roscoe
Bev Roscoe was born and raised in Uniontown. She graduated from Laurel Highlands High School and Indiana Wesleyan University. Bev is a second career clergy, responding to God’s call after spending almost 30 years working in the private sector as a program supervisor and care/service coordinator for geriatric healthcare and adults with disabilities. She completed the UMC Course of Study at Duke Divinity School and Methodist Theological School of Ohio and was received as an Associate Member at the 2018 Annual Conference. Her passions for ministry include working with the marginalized, ecumenical ministry, and camping and retreat ministries.

Bev has been married for 26 years to John, and they have three adopted adult children: Jessica, Justin, and Maria; and two grandchildren, JR and Millie Jean. In their spare time, they hike, bicycle, motorcycle, camp and visit National Parks.

Bev’s motto is that "every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future."  She loves to hear peoples’ stories and walk beside them on the journey to discover who it is God is calling them to be. 
About Chicora/Karns City Charge
Chicora United Methodist Church and Karns City United Methodist Church form an active two-point charge in two different but geographically close Butler County communities. Both churches are known for their intentional hospitality, their commitment to mission and outreach, their Christian education and spiritual formation, and their joy-filled worship of God. Chicora UMC and Karns City UMC are the kinds of faith communities that feel like healthy families, and they are eager to move into a new season of ministry as they continue in the work of making disciples for Jesus and equipping people to live out their faith.
 

Sands to Serve Aliquippa First, Monaca UMCs

Announced: 02-06-2022
About James R. Sands
Jim Sands is a life-long United Methodist from Carmichaels, PA and served his home church in various ways. He is a 1999 graduate of California University of Pennsylvania with an education major.

Jim worked as a substitute teacher and as general manager of Vocelli Pizza in Waynesburg until being called into ministry in 2011.

He was appointed to serve as pastor at Eldersville UMC in 2011 while attending Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. Upon graduation, Jim was appointed to Scalp Level Trinity in 2015, and as lead pastor of the Northeast Somerset Cooperative in 2021.

Jim’s gifts in preaching were affirmed by his seminary as he received the Robert M. Ezzell Homiletical Prize for excellence in preaching. He was ordained an elder in 2017 and serves as the registrar of the Johnstown DCOM and as a member of the Lay Ministry Committee. He enjoys teaching and studying scripture with an emphasis on history and philosophy.
  
Jim is joined in life and ministry by his wife Kristen and their children, Ryan and Molly
About Aliquippa First/Monaca Charge
Aliquippa First United Methodist Church and Monaca United Methodist Church both have a long history of providing vital ministry in the southern portion of Beaver County. Located along the Ohio River in communities with rich industrial histories, both churches are committed to offering creative worship, Christian education and spiritual formation for all ages, and missional outreach to their surrounding neighborhoods. Having cultivated a bold vision for strategic ministry in this challenging season, this relatively new two-point charge is eager to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.
 

McQueen to Serve Brookville Evangelical UMC

Announced: 02-06-2022
About Loren A. McQueen
Loren McQueen considers it a privilege to serve in the Western PA annual Conference of the United Methodist Church.  He grew up in a pastor’s home, as his father Gail McQueen served many years in Western Pennsylvania.  "I am grateful for the influential ministry of the churches of my childhood and the impact they had upon my life.  God also worked in my life through the ministry of Cherry Run Camp Meeting, being challenged there to give my all to the Lord." he said.

Loren graduated from New Brighton High School, attended Asbury University, and Asbury Theological Seminary.  Between college and seminary, he worked as a farrier and his apprenticeship continued through his time in seminary.  He considers this as a blessing with many life lessons learned.  It was in that time that he answered the call into the ministry. 

Loren has served in the local church since 2009, first at Rockbridge UMC in the Kentucky Conference while in seminary.  Upon moving back to Pennsylvania, he served the West Liberty Charge and the Eastbrook Charge of the Butler District.  His passion for ministry is in preaching and teaching the word of God.  The driving force is in sharing the good news of the gospel which brings transformation to the hearts and lives of people. Loren also enjoys sharing life with other disciples in ways which help them grow into the full stature of Christ.  Making disciples and being an agent of renewal for churches has a strong pull on Loren's heart. 

Serving the body of Christ is also a passion of Loren's wife Sara.  They have three daughters: Caroline (5), Abigail (3), and Kathryn (10 months).  As a family they enjoy outdoor activities such as gardening, hiking, bicycle riding, swimming, and riding horses.  We also enjoy gardening, music, singing and reading together as a family.  Loren enjoys working with horses, woodworking, reading history, playing the piano, and playing the trumpet.  The McQueens are excited to continue being in ministry with the people called Methodists.   
 
About Brookville Evangelical United Methodist Church
Brookville Evangelical United Methodist Church is located in the county seat of Jefferson County in the southern area of the Pennsylvania Wilds.  The church has renovated after a devasting flood in 1996 and today has a very active children and youth program, with more than 60 children and youth participating in Sunday School and the after-school program.  The church has a strong history of local and global missions including trips to Paraguay, Red Bird Mission, and Wesley Woods.  At the heart of all they do is passion for sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.
 

Morrison to Serve Unionville

Announced: 02-06-2022
About Alan J. Morrison
Rev. Alan J. Morrison grew up in Waterford, PA.  He was ordained a Deacon in 1988 and an Elder in 1992. His education includes an Associate degree in Digital Electronics earned while serving in the US Air Force; a Bachelor’s degree in Management; an MDiv; and a MA in Liturgical Arts.

His pastoral appointments have been to Homestead First; Hays/West Homestead/Homestead First; Creighton Janes; Pitcairn Center Avenue; Extension Ministry with the General Council on Finance and Administration; Monongahela First, and Wattsburg/Phillipsville.

Alan is a trained coach whose coaching focuses on discipleship, ministry practice, life issues, leadership, and administration. While on the GCFA staff, he facilitated the certification of church business administrators for the denomination. 
 
He has been a part of Scouting for 54 years and will serve as the lead Chaplain for the 2023 National Scout Jamboree. 

Alan is married to the former Lois Carl Granlund. They have a son, Ron (married to Erin), and a granddaughter, Harper. Lois is an ordained UCC clergy, having served her pastoral career as a hospital chaplain. The family also includes two dogs: Maxey and Jo.
 
About Unionville United Methodist Church
Unionville United Methodist Church is a community of growing believers of all ages seeking to be faithful followers of Jesus Christ in the Wesleyan tradition. That tradition involves striving to lead a life that is Christ-like through devotion to the Word of God, to prayer, and to sharing God's grace with everyone we meet. Bible-based preaching, Sunday School for all ages, and a variety of Bible and book studies bring long-term members and newcomers together to grow in God's Word and grace.

The congregation always has a seat for visitors and an ear for new voices and ideas. They are an active congregation that welcomes strangers and creatively reaches out to care for those in need. Unionville is a church community that continually strives to strengthen its faith and deepen its discipleship to Jesus.
 

Pryor Named Washington District Superintendent

Announced: 11-07-2021
About Ross T. Pryor
Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi has appointed the Rev. Ross Pryor to serve as Superintendent of the Washington District, effective Jan. 1, 2022.  Rev. Paul Ritchey, the current Washington DS, will move to the Greensburg District when Rev. Patricia Nelson returns to local church ministry as pastor of Holiday Park UMC after nearly eight years on the Cabinet. 

The Rev. Ross Pryor was born and raised in New Kensington, PA. After graduating from high school, he earned an A.S. in Business Management before heading into the work force. In 2003, while attending Vermont Baptist Church in Creighton, PA, Ross received his call into pastoral ministry. That summer, Ross moved to Johnstown, PA and began attending his home church, Oakland United Methodist Church. It was there that he began his journey toward pastoral ministry in the Wesleyan tradition.

In April of 2006, he received his first appointment, Trinity and Trinity Asbury UMCs in Johnstown. Ross served those congregations and the communities in Johnstown until 2008, when he received his B.A. in Sociology from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. In the fall of that year, he began seminary studies at the Methodist Theological School in Ohio and graduated with a M.Div. in 2011.

While attending seminary, he was appointed to Speers and Dunlevy UMC, a charge that eventually expanded to include Charleroi First UMC. In 2013, Ross became the pastor of West Washington and Jefferson Avenue United Methodist churches in the city of Washington, PA.  Since 2019, Ross has served as the pastor of Aliquippa First UMC and in 2020, Monaca UMC was added to the charge.  Ross is the proud father of one son, Lawrence, an Army Reservist and college student.
 
Ross has been blessed with the spiritual gifts of teaching and preaching and is also passionate about his role for many years as a youth advisor. Since 2005, Ross has worked with the Conference youth, teaching youth and youth leaders about their Christian journey and how to bring their witness back to their schools, churches and communities.  Regardless of the audience, Ross feels he is called to empower servant leaders and the church body to carry out God’s will through community outreach and discipleship.

He also has held numerous other leadership roles in the Conference, serving as a member of the Episcopacy Committee, the Board of Ordained Ministry, and co-chair of the task force that led the listening posts in preparation for the 2019 Special Session of the General Conference. 

 
About Washington District
The Washington District, in the southwestern corner of Pennsylvania, is a place of diversity. Its borders touch Ohio, West Virginia and four other districts and include many small towns, several small cities and a various rural areas. Congregations  are privileged to serve in several college settings, in ministry to homeless people, the elderly, those struggling with issues of poverty and other marginalized individuals. Congregations offer fellowship to all who desire a relationship with Jesus Christ. Mission/Outreach is the heart of the Washington District.

The 78 churches provide a variety of worship styles including contemporary, traditional and small group settings. Serving these congregations are elders, licensed local pastors, retired pastors, certified lay ministers, a deacon and a host of dedicated lay servants. The Holy Spirit is active and present in the Washington District. It is a wonderful place to serve the Lord.
 

Coats to Serve Faithful Followers Charge

Announced: 06-13-2021
About Michael Coats
Michael was born and raised in New Jersey, and did not grow up in the church. A season of difficulty, followed by a season of blessing lead Michael to turn his attention to the Lord at the age of 36. His first love was music, and Michael continues to sing and play guitar as part of his ministry. Prior to being called into pastoral ministry, Michael was a warehouse worker, appliance salesperson, and part-time musician/country band leader.

Michael accepted his first appointment in 2015, as a youth pastor at First UMC of Punxsutawney. From 2016 until 2021, Michael has served the Buffalo Charge U. M. Churches in the Butler District. He is excited to return to the Indiana District to begin serving the Faithful Followers Charge in July 2021.

Michael lives with his wife Debbie, who is the most excellent cook he knows. They have four cats: Jenny, Lexie, Chloe, and Brick.
About Faithful Followers Charge
The Faithful Followers Charge includes Knox Dale, Meade Chapel and Port Barnett United Methodist churches. All three small membership churches are located in Jefferson County and have been part of the same charge since 2005. They participate in community ecumenical services and ministries and support the local food banks. They also support participants on mission trips and help those in need. 

Knox Dale, once part of the United Brethren Church, was organized in 1860 by Reverend J. G. Steiner, a practicing physician and a minister of the Pennsylvania Conference. Meade Chapel was part of the Erie Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church and dates dates back to the same period, with the first building erected in 1871. Both churches are on Knoxdale Road. Post Barnett is in the borough of Brookville and was once part of the Methodist Episcopal Erie Conference. 
 
 

Bonomo Appointed to Ambridge First/Bridgewater/Economy Charge

Announced: 05-30-2021
About Thomas P. Bonomo
Thomas P. “Thom” Bonomo was born in New Brighton, PA—the fifth child of Virginia (Chiappetta) and Pio Bonomo, both immigrants from Italy. He grew up in the Beaver Falls area, attending local schools and graduating from Beaver Falls High School. He attended college to escape working at a steel mill. Without a goal or purpose in his studies, however, he eventually dropped out and got a job…in a steel mill!

God used his search for meaning during that season to reroute his life toward Christian ministry. He went back to Geneva College, graduating with a B.A. in Bible. A combination of ministry involvements cemented his call to ministry (including membership in a Summer ministry team and the Peru “Teen Team”).

After ordination, Thom served in many different ministry settings over four decades, beginning in Midland. He has served churches in Hollentown, Somerset, Latrobe, Mill Run, Ohiopyle, Ford City, Kittanning, Aliquippa, and McDonald. He has two adult daughters, Christy and Julie, two young adult grandchildren, Tom and Virginia, and a delightful wife, Sheelagh.
 
About Ambridge First UMC/Bridgewater UMC/Economy UMC
These three Beaver County churches (Ambridge First UMC, Bridgewater UMC, and Economy UMC) offer joyful and Christ-honoring ministry in the southwestern portion of the Butler District. Each of the churches has a rich history and a vibrant legacy. The three congregations share a common mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ through faithful worship, nurturing fellowship, interactive Christian education, and a coordinated ministry of outreach to their communities. Always eager to bless others with the love of Jesus, the churches of this charge are beacons of faith and hope, especially for those who are desperate for both.
 

Hutton to Serve Buffalo Charge

Announced: 05-23-2021
About Harriet E. Hutton
Harriet was born in Beaver Falls, PA and graduated from Big Beaver Falls High School. She worked at McGuire Memorial Home for Exceptional Children for seven years and developed a deep love for children, especially special needs children. Harriet and her first husband bought and oversaw a working dairy farm in Crawford County. A divorce experience after 17 years of marriage led to Harriet being a single parent for 10 years. She worked hard to support her three children as a computer operator, bookkeeper, and e-commerce analyst.

Harriet has been a member of the United Methodist Church for over 50 years. As a lay person, she served in various positions as Sunday School teacher, youth leader, lay leader, and Certified Lay Speaker. Eventually, she answered God’s call into ministry after her children were raised. She has served as a Licensed Local Pastor for 10 years.

Harriet has been married to Bill Hutton for over 20 years. They have six children in the blended family; seven grandchildren; and two great grandchildren. Harriet loves the Lord and serves Him faithfully. 
 
About Buffalo Charge
The Buffalo Charge consists of three United Methodist churches: Craigsville UMC in Worthington, PA; Fenelton UMC in Fenelton, PA, and McKee Chapel UMC, also in Worthington. These three churches, located on the eastern edge of the Butler District and each with its own history and temperament, share a common mission: to glorify God and to honor the name of Jesus Christ. Their core convictions are that the worship of the Triune God is of primary importance and that the Bible, as God’s inspired Word, is the final authority in matters of life and faith. The churches are eager to enter a new season of ministry in the months ahead.
 

Moore to Serve Branchton/Ridgeville/West Liberty UMCs

Announced: 05-23-2021
About Brandon Moore
Brandon Moore was born in Rammstein, Germany, and relocated frequently throughout his early life. Eventually settling in the Butler Area, he graduated in 2000 from Butler High School. Brandon left the church for a while until meeting his wife Cheryl, who helped him find his way back to church. After marrying in 2002, Brandon and Cheryl served as lay persons in different denominations.

In 2015, Brandon worked for K-LOVE radio where he discovered a renewed sense of faith as well as a call to pastoral ministry. He ignored the call until God made it very clear this was what Brandon was made to do. With the support of his wife, Brandon entered licensing school and in 2019 received his first appointment to the Little Hill, Shannopin and Glenwillard Charge.

Brandon’s main priority as a pastor is for the church to be encouraged to know Jesus and to care for “the least of these” in everything they do. Brandon is completing a Bachelor’s degree at Grand Canyon University and holds additional employment at a safety consulting firm in Wexford.
 
About Branchton UMC/Ridgeville UMC/West Liberty UMC
 Branchton UMC, Ridgeville UMC, and West Liberty UMC form a three-point charge in the northern part of Butler County. These three congregations make it a priority to worship with joy, to pray with conviction, and to build a sense of community that feels like family in all the right ways. In each of the three churches, the Lordship of Jesus finds expression through substantive Christian education, heartfelt worship, and a loving attentiveness to the deepest needs of the community. The Branchton, Ridgeville, and West Liberty congregations are eager to bear witness to the love and grace of Jesus as a new ministry year begins.
 

Odarenko to Serve New Allegheny Valley Charge

Announced: 05-23-2021
About Dora J. Odarenko
Dora Janeway Odarenko was born in Manhattan. She moved to rural New Jersey and then back to the city, attending private schools until moving to Washington DC, where she finally got to enjoy public schools. Starting college at Middlebury, she transferred to Barnard, earning her undergraduate degree and her MA in English at Columbia. Although hearing a call to ministry early in life, she first became a teacher. She taught  at Columbia, Skidmore, Sarah Lawrence, and University of Bridgeport, then—once certified K-6—she taught at the Children’s Storefront in Harlem and in New Haven. She received her M.Div. from Yale Divinity School where she began her journey toward Associate Clergy Membership in the UMC.

Dora loves worship and liturgy. In preaching, prayer groups, and mission, she loves discerning how the Holy Spirit speaks through Scripture, community building, and social justice ministry. She and her husband nurtured foster children and also had a small farm. She is now a widow. She is serious about writing poetry. She serves on a board at Chautauqua and is training to become a spiritual companion.   
 
About Bairdford UMC/Creighton: Janes UMC/Springdale UMC
Bairdford UMC, Creighton: Janes UMC, and Springdale UMC represent a newly-configured three-point charge in the Butler District’s Allegheny Valley and a strategic effort to provide Christ-centered worship, spiritual formation, and outreach in a portion of our conference where the mission field is complex and vast.

Each of these churches brings to the charge both a rich history and an exciting potential. Their priorities are these: creating worship that is as engaging as it is faithful; extending hospitality so that both members and visitors feel known, valued, and loved; and connecting with the surrounding community with the kind of tangible ministry that makes the love of Christ real, especially to those who are suffering. All three congregations eagerly look forward to a new season of ministry.
 

Dan Miller to Serve Pymatuning Charge

Announced: 05-16-2021
About Daniel C. Miller
Daniel Clark Miller was born in Etna and grew up in Shaler Township. He attended Epworth UMC from third grade and was active in VBS, MYF and Sunday School. He was first in the pulpit achieving the God and Country award in Boy Scouts. He started working in retail, where he spent over 40 years. After a severe illness, he returned to the United Methodist Church at Rochester First UMC. He became involved in the Nothing but Nets Anti-Malaria campaign, became the Butler District Lay Leader and started taking Lay Servant Ministry Classes.

After ignoring God’s call to enter the ministry, he finally broke down and answered the call. After attending licensing school, he was appointed to Branchton and West Liberty UMC, and later picked up Ridgeville. He enjoys the challenge of COS, and likes to read and fish. He has been married to Karen for 36 years.
 
About Pymatuning Charge
The Pymatuning Charge consists of the Westford, Jamestown and State Line United Methodist churches. The churches work together on community fundraisers, mission projects such as packing backpacks for school children, clothing giveaways, free Thanksgiving dinner, a strawberry stand at local fairs and events and fundraising dinners.
 

Seth McClymonds to Serve Sarver: Zion

Announced: 05-16-2021
About Seth McClymonds
Seth McClymonds Jr. was born in New Castle and grew up in Saegertown. He is a graduate of Saegertown High School and Penn State Behrend (majoring in Electrical Engineering). During his junior collegiate year, he followed God’s calling into the ministry by serving as a student pastor at State Line UMC outside North East, PA. He earned his M.Div. at Asbury Theological Seminary and has served Duke Center UMC, Y.E.S.S. Shared Ministry, Grace UMC in Warren (associate) and Covenant UMC, and, most recently, First UMC in Bradford.

In addition to serving the local church, Seth provides leadership in Conference and community ministries. He is the current chair of the Council on Finance and Administration and Finance Chair of Olmsted Manor’s board. In Bradford, he serves on the board of the Friendship Table (an area feeding ministry). He is the board president of Leadership McKean, whose mission is to develop leaders and strengthen community.

Seth is married to Beth. They have two children, Jacob (a 7th grader) and Josh (a 4th grader).
 
 
About Sarver: Zion United Methodist Church
Located in the southeastern portion of Butler County in the community of Sarver, Zion United Methodist Church is a dynamic faith community energized by this mission: To invite people to know Jesus Christ; to grow those who respond into disciples; and to serve all people in the name of Jesus. Zion UMC makes it a priority to offer radical hospitality and strives to be a place where all feel seen, heard, and valued. The church offers an expansive and intergenerational ministry that includes creative worship and music, expansive Christian education, exceptional programming for children and youth, and a commitment to missional engagement in the community and world. At Zion UMC, people love deeply, serve faithfully, pray fervently, worship joyfully, and grow daily into the likeness of Jesus.
 

Soltis Appointed to Butler North Charge

Announced: 05-16-2021
About Kathy Soltis
Kathy Soltis was born in Pittsburgh and raised in Elizabeth Pa. She graduated from Pennsbury High School near Philadelphia, from Rider University with a degree in Education, and from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary with a Master of Divinity degree.
 
While studying, she was student pastor to three churches in the Pittsburgh District. After graduation, she was appointed to the Boyers, Ridgeville, and Hilliards churches in the Butler District.  Later, Bethel UMC in Eau Claire was added to this parish. In 2009, she retired from her church role as pastor.
 
Since retirement, Kathy has always had a strong desire to serve the church again. Her passion is bringing the Word of God and the saving grace of salvation through Jesus Christ to all who might hear. The decision to re-enter the pastoral role comes from a love of God, love of these congregations, and the belief that “The will of God will never take you where the Grace of God will not protect  you.”
 
Kathy and husband, Steve,  have two sons, three grandsons, and an abundance of friends and blessings.
 
 
About Butler North Charge
The Butler North Charge, which includes Boyers UMC, Eau Claire: Bethel UMC, and Hilliards UMC, continues to offer gracious and faithful ministry in northern Butler County for the cause of Jesus Christ. Through their engaging worship, their sacrificial generosity, their gracious hospitality, and their creative outreach to their communities, these three congregations bear witness to the Gospel while creating the kind of Christ-centered environment where strong friendships can be built and where all are welcome. The Butler North Charge looks forward to all that God will continue to accomplish through its ministry in the days ahead.
 

Davis to Serve Homewood UMC

Announced: 05-09-2021
About Jan Davis
Jan Tronzo Davis was born and raised in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania, attending the Otterbein and Riverview United Methodist churches and graduating from Beaver Falls High School.

After graduating high school, Jan earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing. She also received a Master’s in Social Work from Geneva College. Jan felt a strong calling to ministry over 35 years ago but resisted the Holy Spirit’s promptings. In 2012, during a season in which she and her husband had both been diagnosed with cancer, Jan finally surrendered to God’s call and began her journey into vocational ministry.

Previously, Jan served Koppel UMC and Clinton UMC. She currently serves Central UMC and Bennetts Run UMC in Beaver Falls, and will continue to serve those two churches as she begins her appointment at Homewood UMC. Jan enjoys her work with the feeding ministry in her community. Jan is also Chaplain at Heritage Valley Beaver

Jan’s husband, Terry, passed away in October of 2019 after 36 years of marriage. She has a beautiful daughter, Mallory, and three grandkids, Bryson, Brooke, and Hope.
 
About Homewood United Methodist Church
Homewood United Methodist Church is a small but vibrant and loving community of Christ-followers, located in a quiet and picturesque portion of Beaver Falls, PA. They are a congregation that feels like family, and are always eager to welcome new family members! At Homewood Church, they worship God with conviction, reach out to the community with an eagerness to bless, and love God and one another with a joy that is truly contagious. The  congregation is deep-hearted and mighty in spirit, and fully committed to making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.
 

Andy Spore to Serve Emporium

Announced: 04-25-2021
About Andrew Spore
The Rev. Dr. Andrew P. Spore is a 1985 graduate of Youngsville High School who holds a B.A. degree in Broadcast Communication from the University of Pittsburgh, an M.Div. degree from Asbury Theological Seminary, and a D.Min. degree with a concentration in Bible in Ministry from the Graduate Theological Foundation.  Additionally, he holds the Diplomate credential in Logotherapy (Franklian Psychology) from the Viktor Frankl Institute of Logotherapy and has taught graduate level courses in that discipline.

Ordained an elder in 2002, Andy has been serving churches since 1995, conducting his ministry according to a three-word vision: Developing Dynamic Disciples.  He is appointed presently to the Freeport and Natrona Heights: Grace United Methodist churches.  His primary gifts are teaching and preaching, with a strong background in New Testament interpretation (with an emphasis on the book of Revelation).  He also brings management and administration skills to the churches he serves.

Andy is an avid scuba diver, holding a variety of certifications in both recreational and technical disciplines, including the solo diver and master diver ratings.  Most of the year he spends his days off in Ohio diving in quarries.  He also enjoys diving in the Great Lakes, the Atlantic Ocean off Florida, and the Caribbean Sea.  Andy also enjoys playing the guitar.

He is married to the Rev. Beverly A. Spore and, between the two of them, they have six adult children and five grandchildren.  They love to travel, enjoying the Southwestern U.S. especially.
 
About Emporium First United Methodist Church
The people of Emporium First UMC believe that Jesus Christ is the way, truth and life and the only way to the Kingdom of God. They are a theologically diverse group that believes they are called to live out the gospel of Jesus Christ. Acts 2:44 reminds us that we have all things in common and that we need to set aside differences and focus on winning souls for Jesus Christ. The congregation's  goal is to build bridges to our community and not walls that isolate us from the world.

Worship at the church is somewhat traditional, but focuses on thankfulness that brings unity in Jesus Christ and his healing presence. Emporium First UMC believes that the best place for church to be is outside of the walls of the building showing that everyone has value and is worthy of the love of the Most high God. It's community outreach programs provide a strong visible witness to the love of Jesus Christ.

Jay Sterling to Serve Ellwood City, Wurtemburg

Announced: 04-18-2021
About Jay Sterling
Jay was born and raised in Oil City. He graduated in 1980 from the University of Pennsylvania where he received his call to the ministry. He served as a US-2 mission intern in Montgomery County, Maryland before entering Wesley Theological Seminary. He graduated summa cum laude with his M. Div. in May 1985.

Rev. Sterling has served appointments in Western Pennsylvania at Creekside, Eldersville, Clarks Mills, and Conneaut Lake before being appointed to the Wurtemburg/Koppel Charge in 2018.

Rev. Sterling has a passion for history, especially as it applies to the development of theological traditions and study of the Bible. His focus is on the purpose and mission of the church as demonstrating and witnessing the inauguration of God’s Kin-dom and its all-inclusiveness.

Rev. Sterling and Martha have been married for 37 years and are the parents of three daughters, Sarah, Joanna, and Lydia, and grandparents of two.
 
About Ellwood City First/Wurtemburg UMCs
Ellwood City First United Methodist Church, offering a ministry that began in 1896 and located at its present site since 1926, is a warm and inviting community of worship, friendship, outreach, and spiritual development that proclaims the saving grace of God while equipping people for Christian discipleship. Its mission is to be a redemptive fellowship in which the Word of God is preached boldly, the sacraments are celebrated joyfully, and the Gospel is taught and lived vibrantly.
 
Wurtemburg United Methodist Church is a dynamic community of believers located just outside of Ellwood City. Intergenerational in its ministry and passionate about impacting the community for Jesus, Wurtemburg UMC offers creative worship, excellent preaching and teaching, and a ministry of outreach that makes it a priority to feed the hungry and help the hurting. The people of Wurtemburg are eager to share the love of God with the community of Ellwood City and beyond.
 

Bradford Appointed Fox Chapel Faith Associate

Announced: 03-28-2021
About Angelique Bradford
Angelique Bradford was born in Pittsburgh and grew up in the Belthzoover neighborhood of the city. She earned a BS in Human Services at Geneva College in 2013  and a Master of Divinity from Wesley Theological Seminary in 2016. Before attending seminary, Rev. Bradford gained extensive experience as an administrative assistant for UPMC and has been commissioned a Health Minister by Pittsburgh Mercy Health System. 

Currently serving as pastor at Ellwood City First and Homewood UMCs, she previously served on the ministerial staff at Asbury UMC in Washington, DC and as a pastoral intern at Sharon First UMC and Calvary UMC in Arlington, VA.  Beyond the local church, she serves on the Butler District Dismantling Racism Team and  Superintendency Committee, and as a member of the boards of the UM Foundation of Western PA and the Northside Christian Health Center in Pittsburgh.  

Rev. Bradford is passionate about sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  She enjoys engaging people through the Word of God and believes the mission is to connect people to the living church. She says the church is not called to be “pew dwellers,” but sojourners called to go out to proclaim and advance the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.

Angelique is married to Clarence and she enjoys family time, nature, and inspired art projects.
 
About Fox Chapel: Faith UMC
Faith United Methodist Church was founded in 1891 as Fox’s Chapel Methodist Protestant Church (from which the community of Fox Chapel gets its name). In 1994 the church was re-named Faith United Methodist Church and in 2004, after a season of revitalization, the church completed construction of a new sanctuary.

In 2012, the congregation hosted several prayer walks in the nearby community of Sharpsburg and discerned a call to start the Roots of Faith Outreach Center. Roots of Faith has grown to include a weekly community dinner (including monthly legal, medical, and financial clinics), an anti-poverty program called Circles, social service referrals, a weekly worshipping community, community Bible studies and small groups, and more.

In 2018, Faith UMC adopted a new vision statement: “Building community by reconciling people with God and one another.” As one church in two locations, Faith UMC is seeking to build relationships that bring people together across differences of race, class, education, and other divisions in our community. Faith UMC is known for its vibrant music program, children’s and youth programs, and its unique vision for bringing people from Fox Chapel and Sharpsburg into relationship with each other and with Jesus Christ! 
 

Adkins To Serve Holsopple: Bethel/Centennial

Announced: 03-14-2021
About Sarah Adkins
Having earned an M. Div. with a concentration in pastoral care at United Theological Seminary, Sarah Adkins has served three churches as lead pastor for the past three years. She did her Clinical Pastoral Education as a chaplain intern at the Pittsburgh VA Hospital. Prior to that, she also served as associate pastor in charge of pastoral care at another two churches.

Prior to being a pastor, I she held jobs in education, adult education, and intelligence analysis, among others. She also earned  an MFA in writing/poetry and has published some of her poetry. She excels at utilizing social media as part of her ministry.

Sarah grew up in the church, with her dad as a pastor. Her spouse of five years is a big support for her and they have cats. In addition to her mom and dad, she has one brother. The family hosted a foreign exchange student from Japan who Sarah considers a sister.

In her free time, she enjoys Bible journaling, listening to music and podcasts, and riding her bicycle. She recently started to learn Zentangle. She also loves to travel. She been on a mission trip to Mozambique, and traveled to Turkey, Bulgaria, Trinidad and Tobago, Ireland, Germany, Holland, and Canada, as well as places in the U.S.
 
About Holsopple: Bethel/ Centennial Charge
The Bethel and Centennial congregations have been together as a charge for 10 years. Both churches are located in Conemaugh Township in Somerset County. They are active in local communities and in ministerium work. They support a food pantry and participate in a Live Nativity sponsored by Conemaugh Township Ministerium. They have a desire to work together for the Kingdom of God.

Bethel UMC is located in Hollsopple and has provided many outreach ministries to the community. They have suffered through floods, but they overcame each time and have great stories to share.

Centennial UMC has a unique history. The name reflects the congregation's start when the United States celebrated the 100th anniversary of its birth. Although located in a remote area, their heart for ministry is always in the community. The congregation has a great love for music ministry.
 
 

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.