2018 Appointments

Appointments effective July 1, except where noted.

Sorted by Announced Date

Loughman To Serve at Butler First UMC

Announced: 06-03-2018

About Hannah Loughman
Hannah Loughman is a graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, where she received the Paul T. Gerrard award given to the graduating student who shows the most promise in pastoral care and homiletics.  She is certainly proving herself worthy of such an award. As a pastor Hannah seeks to help people see the love of God within themselves and others and the grace of Jesus offered to them on the cross.

Serving the Bridgeville and Houston UM churches the past few years, Hannah has led them in experiencing renewed vitality. “It is exciting to witness two communities from different walks of life come together letting the Holy Spirit bind them,” she says. In worship Hannah practices a heart-filled practical worship style that makes the scripture come alive for those present. Hannah looks forward to moving to Butler and will bring a mixture of energy, integrity, and intensity that inspires others to want to know God more.
 
Hannah hopes to be a bridge builder within the community and possesses a vision that the church will be a place that the entire community, not just individuals, turns to for their needs. As she puts it, “I wish for people to see that they have the love and grace of Christ within them and so does everyone else and that in the end, love really is all that matters!” 

Hannah believes that in faith it all boils down to a person’s relationship with Jesus Christ.  “A relationship with Jesus is what is necessary in this life and for the next,”
she says. 
 
Hannah and her husband Todd are the parents of son Owyn and daughter Jordyn. Hannah is the daughter of Rev. Bruce and Bonnie Judy and sister of Rev. Justin Judy and Pastor Jacob Judy.
 
About Butler First United Methodist Church
Butler First UMC is a growing community of believers where Jesus Christ changes lives. The church sees as its mission growing people to Christ-like maturity through on-going personal involvement in worship, fellowship, discipleship, ministry, and evangelism. Butler First is one church with three campuses, each offering a different style of worship. The downtown campus offers three weekend blended traditional services – one on Saturday evening and two on Sunday morning. The Connection Center, also downtown, offers a country music-based worship called God’s Country, also on Saturday evening. Four miles north of downtown is the Crossfire campus, offering modern-style worship on Sunday morning. Although Butler has established a reputation based on different worship styles, their growth group ministries and community-based ministries are the real heartbeat of church life. Regardless of station in life, all are welcome and all can find a church home at Butler First.
 

Bogdewic to Serve in Sharpsville, Sharon

Announced: 04-15-2018

About Chad Bogdewic
Chad grew up in Washington County and graduated from California University of Pennsylvania, where he studied Business Administration.  After graduating, he worked at Centerville Clinics, Inc. as the Assistant Director of Grants and Supports Services, where he wrote proposals for federal and state grants, managed several departments, and worked as the assistant to the executive director.
 
Chad was called into ministry when he was 25.  He went to Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, where he earned a Master of Divinity degree and a Master’s Certificate in urban ministry. He focused his studies on racial reconciliation and economic equality.  In addition to his M.Div, Chad also earned a Master of Sacred Theology from PTS, studying ancient and modern idolatry, the phenomenology of prophecy, and the prophetic response to the form of idolatry of modern America, which he argued was individualism, mammonism, and nationalism.

Chad was ordained an Elder in 2016 and has served mainly in small town and rural settings. He is excited to be able to use his education to work in suburban and urban ministry.

Chad enjoys writing, and is a published author. His book is “American Idols: A Prophetic Indictment Against Idolatry in the United States.” One of his sermons has also been published in a Southwestern Pennsylvania publication. He enjoys reading, especially books on racial and gender equality and reconciliation, Old Testament theology, and prophecy.  He currently serves on the Butler District DCoM, the Conference Disability Concerns Committee and the Young Adult Team, and is a resource person and grant writer for the denomination’s U.M. DisAbility Committee.

He is married to Patricia, a social worker who is working on her MDiv from United Theological Seminary in hopes of becoming a Deacon with a focus on disability ministries.  They have two children, Eliyana (6) and Jonathan (4).
 
About Sharpsville First/Oakland Ave. UMCs
First UMC in Sharpsville and Oakland Avenue United Methodist churches have been a two-point charge for two years and are exploring new ways of being in ministry together. Game nights have provided fellowship and a time for the congregations to get to know one another better.  The churches have a combined presence in a suburban and urban setting. They have been practicing new ways to show radical hospitality. A dinner was held to honor and thank local and community emergency responders for their service.  Vacation Bible School is a highlight of the summer for children in the community.

The churches are part of a cluster of United Methodist churches in the Shenango Valley that are very actively involved in ministry together including taking annual mission trips, packaging meals for the hungry and shared worship services. Their mission is to share God with the least, the last and the lost.

 

Jay Sterling to serve Wurtemburg/Koppel

Announced: 04-15-2018

About Jay Sterling
Jay Sterling has faithfully served in the Western Pennsylvania Annual Conference for 34 years. Jay is a native of Oil City where Grace UMC is his home church. Jay grew up surrounded by Christians whose beliefs formed much of his worldview at the time. However, when he went to the University of Pennsylvania Jay rejected the teachings of his youth and lived as an atheist. At Penn, Jay planned to be a chemical engineer, but, as he began his studies, found that he hated the subject, so he changed his major to liberal arts.

Upon graduation Jay did not feel he was completely ready for further studies, so he entered the US2 program through the General Board of Global Ministries. As a US2, his call to ministry became clear and he entered Wesley Theological Seminary. Jay is well versed in history and shines at being a student of scripture. He preaches contextually, helping the listener not only to understand what the scripture meant when first written, but what it means today.
 
Jay and his wife Martha have three daughters – Sarah, Joanna, and Lydia.  Jay has served at Creekside, Eldersville, Clarks Mills, and Conneaut: Trinity, where he's currently appointed. The people at Wurtemburg and Koppel and the Sterlings are optimistic about the potential of these historic churches as they continue to find ways to make the gospel relevant to their communities and the world beyond.
 
About Wurtemburg/Koppel Charge

Wurtemburg UMC is a small, but active church. Located on the outskirts of Ellwood City in the borough of Ellport, the church cares for its members while engaging in a variety of outreach ministries.  In addition to supporting various missions and missionaries, the congregation is involved in an Ellwood City ministry called the Carpenter’s Project in which homes are repaired for their low-income neighbors.  They also collect backpacks and school supplies for the Ellwood City School District’s low-income and homeless students every year.  Additionally, their Breaking Free ministry offers Bible Study and outreach to the inmates of the Lawrence County Jail.  Church members pride themselves on caring for each other and the wider community, both local and global.  They see their mission as loving God and their neighbors, no matter where they are.
 
Though Koppel United Methodist Church  is small, it is mighty.  It is the only church in the small mill town of Koppel, PA, which has a population of around 800, many of whom identify as Catholic. The church is active with community events and has a relationship with the local fire department.  Koppel hosts soup suppers, with the proceeds going back into the community.  It also has an active youth group that reaches  local youth of the neighborhood.  The church has much potential for growth.  The people of Koppel UMC love to love on people and see it as their God-given mission.
 

Miller to serve Harrisville/Forestville

Announced: 04-08-2018

About Kenneth Miller
Ken Miller been compellingly interested in authentic spiritual connection since he was a teen.  This led ultimately, after an earnest and thorough-going search, to a convicting Wesleyan experience of the saving power of God.  Along with it came a Jonah-like call to ministry. This compelling interest, convicting experience and numinous call continue to drive the core of his ministry.  Ken loves to tell the story…of Jesus and his love” – and he loves the challenge of relating that simple story to an ever-changing, complex world. 

Other ministry influences include training and experience in law and mediation, business management and marketing, depth psychology and American storytelling and literature.

Ken enjoys Chicago electric blues, visionary art, authentic Italian cuisine, American football and basketball and anything which quickens the soul and brightens the mind in this wide, wide wonderful, fascinating world. 

Ken is looking forward to beginning a new stage of his life in which he plans to write and to share his ministry "with my lovely bride-to-be, Diane."
 
About Harrisville/Forestville United Methodist churches
The Harrisville and Forestville Charge is made up of two churches in the Route 8 corridor in northern Butler County. The churches are made up of people who are resilient in their faith.

Harrisville United Methodist Church is a small town church that still seeks to stimulate a revival of the Holy Spirit in our daily lives. In worship, they explore scripture to seek a deeper understanding of the call of Christ upon their lives. They strive to take the message of Good News out to others while serving those in the community in need.
 
“Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors” is the foundation of our Wesleyan theology. Through worship, outreach, study, mission and active community engagement the people of Harrisville seek to be ambassadors for Jesus Christ in the world, redeemed by Christ’s blood and God’s infinite grace. The Harrisville church offers both a morning contemporary worship service and a traditional service at 11 a.m.

The Forestville church is in a more rural area with fewer younger people. The congregation supports the local food pantry, helped with a summer feeding program for children and has provided funds for a school nurse to purchase socks, mittens and winter items for children in need. 

The Harrisville and Forestville congregations are constantly looking for the next right answer as they strive to connect with their communities and make God's love real in their area and the world.

Saffell to Serve Liberty/Amity UMCs

Announced: 04-01-2018

About Laura Saffell
Called by God to love others, especially those who often went unseen and excluded, Laura said “yes” to God at the age of 12.  At the age of 18, Laura’s call to ministry took her to college and, upon graduation, into service as a Christian Education Director at a United Methodist Church. As a young adult, she heard the voice of God through others affirming her gifts for pastoral ministry, so she enrolled in Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, where she earned a Master of Divinity degree. She was ordained an elder in 2001.
 
Laura is passionate about teaching and preaching God’s word.  Her personal experience as a disciple of Jesus and pastor in the local church in Alaska, where she presently resides with her husband Jarrett, and in Western Pennsylvania, where she grew up and served churches on the Franklin and Butler districts, is “when believers are filled with the Holy Spirit … the Word of God becomes living and active in their lives.”  For Laura, it’s also then that, as biblically-nourished disciples of Jesus, they can worship in Spirit and in truth because they know who they worship and why.” 
 
In addition to preaching and proclaiming God’s word, Laura is passionate about sharing the love of Jesus, especially with those in need.  For Laura, worship is more than an event that takes place on Sunday mornings.  It is “thanking Jesus for all He has done in giving us abundant and everlasting life, all the while inviting Jesus to use us in reaching those who the Bible describes as the ‘least, the last and the lost’ in our communities, our nation, and in our world.”
 
Laura loves music and loves to sing.  A musician since childhood, Laura’s experiences in the local church include starting praise and worship teams. 

Laura looks forward to returning to serve again in Western Pennsylvania and being able to enjoy her WPA family and friends. Her son Nick,18, will enroll in college later this fall. Daughter Kathryn, 22, makes her home in Western Pennsylvania.
 
 
About Liberty/Amity Charge
Liberty and Amity United Methodist churches form a two-point charge close to Washington, PA. Self-described as “rural churches,” their shared vision and mission is to “learn of God, live for God, be like God in everyday living, and lead others to God”.
 
Known in their communities as churches that welcome children and youth, practice hospitality, engage the neighborhoods of which they are a part, both churches envision a church through which disciples are made, ministry to an older adult population takes place, drug and alcohol ministries set people free while providing much-needed help and support to families affected by both. They strive to be churches that reach increasingly beyond their walls, and envision a growing dependence on and trust in the leading of God’s Holy Spirit.
 

Jean Smith To Serve Belmont UMC

Announced: 03-25-2018

About Jean A. Smith
Rev. Jean A. Smith will be appointed to serve the Belmont United Methodist Church in Johnstown effective July 1, 2018.   Jean is a second-career pastor who has been serving in ministry for the last 10 years, and was ordained as a Full Elder in 2017. She currently serves as pastor of Forestville and St. John's UMCs. 

Prior to answering the call to ordained ministry, Jean was an active lay person, who served on almost every committee in the church, taught Bible study, was a Lay Speaker, and the lay member of Annual Conference.  She also served in ministry as the church secretary at her home church, Center UMC in Natrona Heights, Pa.  As she answered her call to ministry, Jean completed her undergraduate degree in Christian Studies, and then earned a Masters of Divinity from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.

Jean’s primary spiritual gifts are Preaching, Teaching and Prophecy.  Integral to her ministry is the proclamation and living out of Grace – she cherishes the title “Inviter” in her ministry.  She claims, “If anyone can say they know Jesus better and love him more because of knowing me, I will feel as if I have fulfilled my call.  I believe that the more we love Jesus, the more we love people; and that kind of love translates into church growth, both spiritually and numerically.”

Jean married her high school sweetheart, Wayne, in 1970, and together they raised a family that now includes  two children, five grandchildren and one great-grandson!  Wayne is retired and devotes his time to supporting Jean in ministry and sharing life with their family.  Lulu Belle and Petey, their pet chihuahuas, will join Jean and Wayne in the Belmont parsonage.
 
About Johnstown: Belmont UMC
The Belmont United Methodist Church in the suburbs of Johnstown was a new church start in the Evangelical United Brethren denomination 65 years ago.  Today a few of the charter members are still living, and many of the second generation members make up the core of the congregation.  The Belmont facility has been upgraded in recent years and is now fully accessible and features central air conditioning throughout the building, as well as a large paved parking lot.  Because of these elements that contribute to a spirit of hospitality, the church is often used for District and Conference functions.

The Belmont church records and airs their weekly worship services on the local cable access channel, thereby offering a valuable ministry to not only shut-in members, but to many others in the greater community.  The ministry schedule at Belmont is full and vibrant, including: involvement with residents at nearby Arbutus Park Retirement Community; a Wellness ministry that offers a variety of seminars and services throughout the year; a healthy music ministry that features the Chancel Choir; a children’s ministry which offers weekly Sunday School and Children’s church, as well as seasonal events and Vacation Bible School; fellowship lunches on the third Sunday of each month; and deep involvement with Operation Christmas Child, serving as a Relay Center as well as sponsoring an annual bus trip to work at the OCC processing center in Charlotte, NC.    The church continues to explore new ways to reach out to more people with the love of Jesus Christ, and are looking forward to partnering with their new pastor in these endeavors.
 

Andrew Spore to Serve in Freeport, Natrona Heights

Announced: 03-18-2018

About Andrew Spore
The Rev. Dr. Andrew Spore is a firmly Wesleyan pastor who seeks to define the boundaries of faith while practicing ministry in the midst of a world that continues to grow theologically diverse.  He is constantly refining his understanding of what it means to be saved and what it means to be a Christian according to scripture.  Andrew disciplines himself to practice ministry out of a firm belief in prevenient and sanctifying grace and works hard at meeting people where they are and encouraging them to grow and stretch. Andrew's mission is to develop dynamic disciples through the exercise of gifts of teaching, preaching, and shepherding and styles that include coaching, one-to-one sharing and modeling.

Andy most recently served as pastor of Otterbein UMC in Connellsville and Calvary UMC in Uniontown. He previously served churches in the Erie-Meadville, Indiana and Johnstown Districts. He is married to the Rev. Beverly Spore, who also is an ordained elder in the Conference.
 
About Freeport UMC/ Natrona Heights: Grace UMC

Freeport UMC and Natrona Heights: Grace UMC are churches that, like many in Western Pennsylvania are continuously seeking ways to provide relevant ministry in places where economic conditions have declined during that last 40 years.

Freeport is a small town nestled on the banks of the Allegheny River. Located at the convergence of four counties – Allegheny, Armstrong, Butler, and Westmoreland – Freeport UMC finds ways to connect with the community to make God’s love real to others. At present the congregation plans to open a thrift shop to strengthen their connection with people in need in the community.
 
Natrona Heights: Grace is located in a suburban community that is constantly seeking to define itself in new and vital ways. The people who make up Grace church have a never-say-die attitude and rejoice at signs of life that show themselves in the community. During the past two years they have been involved in building new relationships that connect with students in the Highlands School District. Grace also offers a feeding ministry in partnership with United Methodist Church Union.
 

Alyce Weaver Dunn to Serve as DCM

Announced: 03-09-2018

About Alyce Weaver Dunn
The Rev. Alyce Weaver Dunn, will be appointed as the new Director of Connectional Ministries, effective July 1, 2018.  She has served as the Johnstown District Superintendent since 2010.
 
“Alyce will bring a plethora of administrative and relational gifts that will help us to continue living into the blessing of being a connectional church,” said Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi.
 
The appointment was announced Friday by Bishop Cynthia Moore-Koikoi after the Connectional Leadership Team affirmed a recommendation made jointly by a search committee, the Bishop, and the Appointive Cabinet. The process began after the Personnel Committee reviewed the DCM job description to determine if it remained consistent with the mission and ministry needs of the annual conference. Then, according to Conference Rules, a search committee was convened to review resumes submitted by ordained elders who wanted to be considered for the position.
 
As the Johnstown District Superintendent, Alyce joyfully partnered with clergy and laity in proclaiming Christ to the world.  During her tenure as DS, she served as the Cabinet Treasurer (2011-2014) and Dean of the Cabinet (2014-2018).  Elected as a delegate to the General Conference in 2012 and 2016, the WPA Delegation chose her as its vice-chair for the 2016-2020 quadrennium.  Alyce also has served as an elected clergy delegate to the Northeast Jurisdictional Conference since 2004.
 
Currently, Alyce serves on the Board of United Methodist Communications and as vice-chair of the Northeast Jurisdictional Committee on Appeals. In the Conference, she has been a member of the Board of Ordained Ministry, serving as candidacy registrar from 2003-2008 and Secretary from 2008-2010. She also chaired the WPAUMC Committee on Disability Concerns when it launched the annual retreat for persons with disabilities at Olmsted Manor.
 
Since 1990, Alyce has served as the dean of Music, Art and Creative Drama Camp (MACD) at Wesley Woods. She often has said that the highlight of every year for her is spending time with the MACD/SACK family at Wesley Woods and sharing Christ with the campers! Because of her passion for camping, Alyce and her husband, the Rev. Keith A. Dunn, currently serve as co-chairs for clergy gifts on the “Deeply Rooted, Upward Reaching” capital campaign steering committee. Alyce has also enjoyed serving as a mentor for young adults at several Exploration events, which are designed to help persons discern a call to ministry.
 
Alyce has been married to Keith, her best friend and partner in ministry, for 30 years. Her mother, Doris Weaver, joined the Dunn household in 2014. The Dunns are diehard Pirates, Penguins and Steelers fans and enjoy hiking and traveling.  Alyce and Keith are grateful to have successfully lost a combined 150 pounds since 2015 and even amazed themselves when they ran and completed their first ever 5K race in the Spring of 2017!

 
About Director of Connectional Ministries
The director of connectional ministries serves as an officer of the annual conference and sits with the cabinet when it considers matters relating to coordination, implementation or administration of the conference program. In partnership with the Bishop and Cabinet and the elected leadership of the Conference, the director of connectional ministries has the following primary responsibilities:
  • To serve as steward of the vision of the annual conference, including the development, clarification, interpretation, and embodiment of the vision
  • To serve as leader of the continuous process of transformation and renewal necessary for the annual conference to be faithful to our Christian identity in a changing world
  • To ensure alignment of the total resources of the conference to its vision
  • To ensure the connections among the local, district, annual conference, and general church ministries for the purpose of networking, resourcing, and communicating their shared ministry. 

Check To Serve Greensburg Otterbein UMC

Announced: 03-04-2018

About Dawn Lynn Check
Dawn Lynn Check was born and raised in Braddock Hills, just outside of Pittsburgh. A graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, she began her career in broadcasting as the third generation of her family to work at WTAE. She moved on to be a talk show producer at KDKA Radio, where she met her husband Doran.
 
Dawn Lynn was executive director of United Campus Ministry, serving the campuses of Carnegie Mellon University, University of Pittsburgh and Chatham University for 11 years. She went to seminary at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and was ordained a deacon in 2001.
 
After UCM closed, she served Swissvale UMC part-time and worked full time in public relations for the Plum Borough School District. She also served as pastor of Creighton: Janes UMC and began serving as director of communications for the Conference in 2011. Ordained an elder in 2014, she moved back into local ministry as pastor of McKeesport: West Side and Dravosburg  UMCs in September of 2015  She has served at at Freeport UMC and Natrona Heights: Grace UMC, since July 1, 2016. 
 
Dawn Lynn and her husband have three children—Jacob, 28; AJ, 23; and Regan, 19.
 
About Greensburg: Otterbein UMC
Otterbein United Methodist Church is located in the cultural district of the city of Greensburg. There are two services each Sunday and Sunday School for all ages.  Otterbein is a very community-minded congregation and well known for many outreach ministries. The church  hosts the annual Community Thanksgiving Dinner and supports many agencies across Greensburg and Westmoreland County. Otterbein is also the home of Feeding the Spirit, a non-profit group dedicated to nourishing the bodies, minds and spirits of those in need in the Greensburg community. 
 
In addition to outreach programs, Otterbein offers many children and youth programs such as Wacky Wednesday, VBS, and a youth group, as well as many family friendly activities all year long. Otterbein also is known for its many music ministries - choir, youth chime choir, hand bell choir as well as many individuals with musical talents.
 
The Otterbein congregation believes that Greensburg, the township, the county and the whole world are places where God calls us to serve! God is always calling us to new ways to serve!
 

Janz To Serve Butler First UMC

Announced: 02-11-2018

About David D. Janz
The Rev. David Janz, a gifted teacher and preacher who serves as co-chair of the Conference Board of Ministry, has been appointed as senior pastor of Butler First UMC. Since 2007, Rev. Janz has served as the senior pastor of Christ UMC in Franklin, which has experienced growth in professions of faith and worship attendance and offers a variety of worship experiences. He is skilled in building and working with teams in the local church, as well as at the district and Conference level.

Rev. Janz's preaching style is conversational and interactive and, although his administrative skills are evident, his greatest joy comes from preaching and teaching. Before being appointed to the Franklin Church, Rev. Janz served eight years as pastor of Christ UMC in Erie. A graduate of West Virginia University with a major in music education, he earned his master of divinity degree from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. 

Rev. Janz and his wife Betsy have an adult son and a daughter who is a college student. 
 
About Butler: First UMC
Butler First United Methodist Church offers the same message in a variety of worship settings at three campuses for about 1100 people each week. Traditional services are offered at its downtown campus sanctuary at 6 p.m. Saturday and twice on Sunday mornings; a God's Country service with country music and communion follows a 6 p.m. dinner on Saturday evenings, also at the downtown campus. The Crossfire campus outside Butler offers contemporary worship on Sunday mornings. Butler First offers several small groups and ministries to those in the community through a community meal, an addiction recovery ministry and a ministry to those transitioning back into the community from prison. 

Park Named as Butler District Superintendent

Announced: 02-05-2018

About Eric S. Park
The Rev. Eric S. Park, who has served as senior pastor of Butler First UMC since September 2013, will be appointed as the Butler District Superintendent, effective July 1, 2018.  

Rev. Park spent his childhood and youth in three Western Pennsylvania towns (Washington, Grove City, and Indiana), graduating from Indiana Area Senior High School in 1984.  He said he learned to read with a Bible in one hand and a comic book in the other. He wrote his first song in ninth grade and has been doing his best to create music ever since.  
 
He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English literature from Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA; a Master of Divinity degree from Duke Divinity School in Durham, North Carolina; and a doctoral degree from Drew Theological School in Madison, New Jersey.
 
Eric and his wife Tara met in 1986 when they were both students at Dickinson College. Cast as romantic leads in the college musical, their first kiss was on stage. The rest is history.
 
Tara and Eric believe that the best day of their lives was January 18, 1992, when together they entered the covenant of marriage. They love to read, laugh, travel, and go to movies. And, since neither of them cook all that much, a good restaurant is always one of their favorite places.  Eric still collects comic books!
 
His new appointment won’t be his first time as a district superintendent. He was serving as the Washington DS when Butler First’s long-time pastor, the Rev. J. David Panther, died in 2013 after a prolonged battle with cancer. In the midst of the Bishop and Cabinet’s discernment process to find a senior pastor for Butler First, he was called to serve there.   

Rev. Park’s ministry has touched many lives in Western PA and beyond. After serving three years as pastor of First UMC in McDonald, he was appointed in 1995 as an associate at Christ UMC in Bethel Park. There he and his wife Tara launched a popular Sunday evening contemporary worship service with progressive rock band Ten-Point-Ten. Tara played keyboard and was vocalist. In 2005, she released her first solo CD, Things Unseen, with music and lyrics written by Eric. Since then, the couple has released two other CDs, mostly with original music.

In July 2002, he moved to Central Highlands Community UMC as senior pastor and served there until he was appointed to fill a vacancy as superintendent of the Washington District beginning Jan. 1, 2009. 

Rev. Park was nominated by the annual conference as a candidate for Bishop in both 2008 and 2012. He sat on the denomination’s General Board of Discipleship from 2008-2016, often serving in leadership positions.

He has served on several Conference boards and agencies, including the Board of Ordained Ministry, Parish and Community Development and Discipleship. He has also been a board member for Jumonville and the United Methodist Foundation of Western Pennsylvania.

His blog, A Gracious Graffiti, can be found at https://pewboy.net/.
 
 
About Butler District

The Butler district includes United Methodist congregations who have been bringing the good news of Jesus to life for over 200 years in Beaver, Butler, and Lawrence counties, as well as a few areas of Armstrong County and the upper Allegheny valley area of Allegheny County. The Butler District provides worship settings located in urban, suburban, and rural locations. Average attendance ranges from eight to 1500 in weekend worship activities. The churches of the Butler District strive to bring the hope of the gospel of Jesus Christ to a region that has experienced decline in population and economic vitality throughout the last 40 years.

During any given week the churches of the Butler District are engaged in ministries that provide radical hospitality, inspiring worship, intentional faith development, mission opportunities, and extravagant generosity. The communities of faith in the Butler District seek to fulfill God’s call to be disciples of Jesus who invite others to believe, engage new as well as long established participants in activities that encourage each other in their faith, and who look for effective ways to make God’s love real in their communities and the world beyond.


Goodman Appointed to Beaver UMC

Announced: 02-04-2018

About Timothy J. Goodman
Tim Goodman, who has served at Butler First UMC since 2014, will become the pastor at Beaver United Methodist Church effective July 1, 2018. Tim is passionate about a relational ministry that helps individuals to encounter Jesus Christ for the first time and helps disciples of Jesus to be equipped for team ministry to show God's love in the world. He seeks to gather people and cultivate in them a sense of belonging, compassion, and purpose so they can more fully and gratefully participate in the worship and mission of Jesus Christ locally and globally. Tim has the interpersonal skills to respectfully relate to others who are very different from himself and see their God-given potential and identity in Christ. .

Prior to being appointed to Butler First UMC, where he has been executive pastor, he served as the pastor of Creekside UMC, the youth pastor of Trinity UMC, and the teaching pastor of Indiana: Grace UMC’s college ministry at Indiana University of PA. He also served as a Pittsburgh Theological Seminary intern at Eighth Avenue Place in Homestead, PA. Tim is married to Melissa and they are the proud parents of Joshua and Madelyn.
About Beaver United Methodist Church
The Beaver United Methodist has a rich tradition of providing ministries that connect people to Jesus and the steadfast love of the Lord that endures forever. Located in the Beaver County seat, the Beaver UMC stands poised to grow into the next expression what this church will be. There is much excitement in the area with the building of the nearby Shell Cracker Plant and the promise of new economic development. The leaders of Beaver UMC are excited to receive a new pastor who will be able to lead them in connecting with younger people who make up a growing portion of the population.  

Megan Berkebile to Serve Fells UMC

Announced: 01-28-2018

About Megan Berkebile
As the youngest child of a preacher, Megan Berkebile grew up in many places,  including Johnstown where her mother and stepfather currently reside. Megan attended West Virginia Wesleyan College where she studied Christian Education and Music. She then attended the Methodist Theological School in Ohio, where she earned a Master of Divinity degree in 2007 and a Master of Arts in Counseling Ministries in 2009. A licensed Behavior Specialist in Pennsylvania, Megan spent more than five years supporting children with mental and behavioral health needs. She has served as pastor of the three churches of the Allegheny River West Bank Charge in Butler District since July, 2015

Megan is actively involved in Kappa Phi, a Christian Women’s Service club, encouraging college women to deepen their relationship with Christ. She is the Secretary for the Conference Commission on the Status and Role of Women and also serves on the Disability Concerns committee. Megan is passionate about encouraging youth to be involved in the church. 
 
About Fells United Methodist Church
Fells United Methodist Church, in the Connellsville District, has been known as the “Lighthouse on the Hill” since the congregation was founded in 1785.  Pioneer Beazell and Fell families held early Methodist worship services in their homes in 1785.  Seven years later, with an increasing congregation, the two families spearheaded the building of a log cabin church.  On land donated by General George Washington, the stone church was constructed in 1834.  Washington was grateful for tools and leather supplies donated by Benjamin Fell to his soldiers serving at Valley Forge.  Fell opened his home for the men to repair and make shoes.

In 1967 the new Fells church was dedicated a short distance away.  Today the “Lighthouse on the Hill” is where the people open their hearts to God’s presence in their lives.  But their church is also where they open doors to the needs of our community.  Fells UMC is both a house of prayer and a center of hospitality: where the congregation brings God’s light to the people of their area.