2018 Appointments

Appointments effective July 1, except where noted.

Sorted by Announced Date

Beverly Roscoe to Lead South Fayette Parish

Announced: 05-20-2018

About Beverly K. Roscoe
Beverly K. Roscoe has been appointed to be the lead pastor of the South Fayette Cooperative Parish effective July 1, 2018.
 
Pastor Bev says she experienced a call to ministry in high school, but in the dark ages of the 1970’s, women were not often encouraged to enter into full time pulpit ministry. At the encouragement of her parents and guidance counselors, she set her sights on missions instead, and became a communications major.  Because it wasn’t God’s call she quickly became discouraged and instead spent the next 30+ years trying to figure out what she wanted to be when she grew up. Her work experience included direct care for mentally challenged adults and service coordination for geriatric home health care. She and her husband John were specialized foster parents during this time, taking hard-to-place teens, sibling groups, and those with disabilities.  An adopted child herself, Bev says they quickly realized they were foster parent failures They wanted to share their lives and hearts with the children on a more permanent basis and eventually adoped Jessica, Maria, and Justin.

During this time, Bev was an active leader in her church, as well as volunteering with Special Olympics and Girl Scouts.

However, she continued to feel something missing in her life. She again heard God's call to ministry at 50 and after spending the next year in prayer and discernment, this time she whole-heartedly said ‘yes’.

Pastor Bev earned a degree in Christian Ministries with an emphasis in children’s ministry,  attended Course of Study at Duke Divinity School and the Course of Study Schools of Ohio, graduating from MTSO. She will be commissioned as an Associate Member at this year’s Annual Conference.

Her first appointment was as an associate on the 6-point Hyndman Larger Parish, which later became the Four Point Harmony Charge in Hyndman.  She then was appointed to Point Marion and Gans, which became part of the Two Rivers Charge with the addition of Mount Pleasant Dilliner. 

She has served on the Conference level as the chair of the former Children’s Ministry team, dean of JAM Camp at Jumonville, Board of Discipleship, Nominations, and Disability Concerns. Bev has taught inclusion and autism awareness at numerous churches and Conference events. She is VIM and ERT certified and mission trips have taken her from Connellsville to Fiji and every place in between.
In Connellsville District, she teaches Lay Servant classes, serves on nominations, and the worship committee.

Bev serves nationally as secretary for the National Fellowship of Associate Members and Local Pastors.
She identifies her gifts as administration, leadership, teaching, and preaching. Her passions for ministry include serving the least and the lost and the marginalized, especially those with special needs.
Her life verse is Eph 4:1 paraphrased, live a life worthy of the calling you have received. She says we are all called into ministry and service together.

Bev is excited about the newly formed cooperative parish. She has deep roots in this area, having lived most of her life in Uniontown.  “I understand the demographics of the area. I have seen the best and worst Fayette County has to offer," she said.  "I’m proud to be from here, and I know there is a lot of ministry we can do here together. People are lost and hurting, and we can’t afford to keep the Good News in the building: we need to faithfully find creative ways to get the Good News to those who need it the most”.

Empty nesters, Bev and John share their home with their two Labs and two cats and enjoy spending as much time as possible with their adult children and grandson JR.

In their spare time, Bev enjoys Pittsburgh sports, crafting and crocheting, while John is an active amateur radio operator. Together they like to travel, cook, camp, bicycle, motorcycle, and do almost anything outdoors.
 
About South Fayette Parish
The churches of this newly formed cooperative ministry –Brownfield; Uniontown: Calvary; Uniontown: Christ; Uniontown: Community; Franklin Memorial; Gans; Hopwood; Juniata; Masontown; Mount Pleasant-Dilliner; Point Marion; Smithfield; Trinity: Fairchance; Upper Middletown—service communities in the southern part of Fayette County.. The congregations have worked together in various configurations for many years; they have decided to formalize the kindred spirit that already exists among them.
 
Brownfield United Methodist Church was organized as part of the Methodist Protestant Church shortly after revival meetings were held at the Hutchinson School house in 1882.  The services were conducted by Rev. John McCarty of Fairchance and Rev. George McCollum of Uniontown.  The first building was taken over by the Independent Order of Odd Fellows in 1889, but the church continued holding services there until 1897.  A new building with addition was built in 1926. Since 1965 they have been on a circuit with the Hopwood Church.
 
Uniontown: Calvary United Methodist Church was organized on February 11, 1894 as a Methodist Protestant Church under the leadership of Rev. David E. Minerd.  The church was originally called Minerd Chapel.  An education wing was added in 1932 and second brick education wing was added in 1956.  The church loves to reach out to a variety of community groups and is a great supporter of Jumonville.
 
Uniontown: Christ United Methodist Church has roots dating back to the fall of 1830, when the “reformer” portion of the Uniontown Methodist Episcopal Church (later Asbury) withdrew from that Church and organized a Class of the Methodist Protestant Church in the Fayette County Courthouse.The first building was erected in 1841 and was known as the “Little Old Radical church.”    This was the first congregation served by Reverend John Calvin Broomfield when he came to America in 1896 and who later became one of the two original Bishops elected by the Methodist Protestant Church at the Uniting Conference. 
 
Uniontown:  Community United Methodist Church traces its roots to the spring of 1938, when Mrs. Ethel Steward asked three members of the staff of the McCrum Community House, a Board of Missions project of the Pittsburgh Conference, to start a Sunday School in Evans Manor.  They met in a school house on West Penn Boulevard .  A charter was granted to the Evans Manor Methodist Church in 1948.  In 1998 Evans Manor and Hutchinson Churches merged to form Smock: Community.  It later became part of the Uniontown Larger Parish.
 
Franklin Memorial United Methodist Church:  About 1835 a Methodist Protestant Church was organized in Woodvale School District and a stone church building was erected on land donated by Joseph Paull.  Mr. Paull also donated the land for a burying ground, which is now the Franklin Cemetery.  A new Church was erected in 1875 and a church school addition was built in the early 1900s.  The church has a very active Sunday School and youth program.
 
Gans United Methodist Church was founded in 1905 when a group of families in the area met in a store to organize a Methodist Protestant Class.  The Church was built in 1905, the original structure is still in use.  An annex was added to the church in 1959.
 
Hopwood United Methodist Church was founded in 1828 by members who withdrew from the Methodist Episcopal Church to reform and join the Methodist Protestant Church.  The church being too small, members began to work for the purpose of building a new Church that was dedicated in 1901.  The basement was excavated in 1927 to construct a hall where the church often gathers for fellowship.
 
Juniata United Methodist Church was formed as a Methodist Protestant Church after services were started in the Juniata School on December 1, 1935.  The H.C. Frick Company gave the congregation permission to use one of the company houses for a Church and it was occupied in in 1936. Today Juniata is in converted store with a fellowship hall upstairs.  The congregation loves to worship and share fellowship together.
 
Masontown United Methodist Church was founded in 1819 by Andrew Long, Caleb Hanna, and Alexander McDougle.  The first location was on West Church Street with a cemetery attached. In 1820 this church was almost ruined by a violent storm.  The church was repaired and rebuilt.  It has survived a fire and stood as a testament to the resilient grace and God and the wonderful people of the community.
 
Mount Pleasant-Dilliner United Methodist Church was the northernmost church in the Methodist Episcopal Church South and often referred to as the “Dixie Church.”  The church is very active in missions and supports over 20 different missions in and outside the local area.  The church loves music and is especially known for its mission dinners.
 
Point Marion United Methodist Church was organized in 1843 through the efforts of Ambrose Dilliner, with four members.  They had no regular place of worship, but met from place to place, such as the Polly Rose house, the Mill house, and the Ferry House.  The cornerstone for the current church was laid on September 11, 1921 and was dedicated on April 16, 1922.  The church houses a food pantry and Fijian worship community.
 
Smithfield United Methodist Church:  Reverend Dennis Battee and a Mr. Stevenson organized the Society in 1819 in the home of Dr. Sackett.  James Smith, a member, had applied to the preacher on the Redstone Circuit to organize a Church and having secured a sufficient number the Society was organized.  In 1833 a Camp Meeting was held on General Alexander McClellen’s farm; the Sabbath meeting had over 3,000 in attendance. The church grew and today is a special place of worship for the community.
 
Trinity United Methodist Church was known as The Independent Methodist Church of Fairchance and was organized sometime before 1903.   A new church building was built in 1923, but was later destroyed by fire.  A new church building was erected in 1924 with an addition made in 1965-1966. 
 
Upper Middletown United Methodist Church: The church claims its origin in the Class that met in the John Jones home on Redstone Creek, which was a preaching appointment on the original Redstone Circuit of 1784-1787.  Reverend Robert Ayres preached there regularly in 1786-1787 and on his first visit on June 21, 1786 Bishop Francis Asbury accompanied him.  The record of the event, in the Ayers journal is as follows: “At friend Jones.  Heard Mr. Asbury preach from Genesis 18; 19 and Harry (Black Harry Rosier) from ‘If any man have not the spirit of Christ he is none of his.’ They both spoke very lively and close.  Lodged with Mr. Asbury and rested well.”  That same spirit is still a part of the Upper Middletown Church today.
 

Ealy to Serve South Fayette Parish

Announced: 05-20-2018

About David D. Ealy
David D. Ealy has been appointed to the South Fayette Cooperative Parish effective July 1, 2018.
David was born and raised in East Finley Township, Washington County Pa.  He attended McGuffey High School and graduated in 1979. While in eleventh grade, David attended a youth retreat at Jumonville Camp and accepted Jesus as his personal savior. He received his call into ministry that same night.  While in high school, he did some pulpit supply.  He attended Waynesburg College (now University) and received a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and an Associate’s degree in Christian Education. While at Waynesburg, David was inducted into the National Drama Honorary Fraternity Alpha Psi Omega. He also worked one summer at Marmon Valley Farms in Ohio as a counselor and horseback riding instructor. He also served one summer as a conference intern at Cloe, Covode and Steffy UMCs near Punxsutawney.
David attended United Theological Seminary in Dayton Ohio where he earned a Master’s of Divinity and a Master’s of Art in Religious Education. While in seminary, he sang with the seminary choir United Sound and was a student associate at Parkview UMC in Miamisburg Ohio and Eaton UCC.
David was ordained a Deacon in 1986 by Bishop J. Ault and later an elder under Bishop G. Bashore. He has served the annual conference in the following positions, a counselor for the Johnstown District Youth Council and the Indiana District Youth Council. He also served on the Conference Commission on Church Unity and Inter-religious concerns where David was the WPAUMC representative to the Pa, Council of Churches.
David has served the following charges in Western Pa. The Mahaffey Charge ( Mahaffey,Glen Campbell,and Smithport Umcs) in Johnstown District, Coalport Charge( Coalport, Irvona, and Glen Hope UMCs) Johnstown District, The Knoxdale charge( Knoxdale,Coolspring, and Ramsaytown UMCS) Indiana District , The Mount Morris Charge( Mount Morris, Taylorstown, and Bald Hill UMCs) Washington District, Forestville and Saint John’s Umcs, Butler District,Connellsville :Wesley and Dunbar: Franklin Memorial UMCs ,Connellsville District and the Uniontown Larger Parish ( Community UMC, Juniata Umc, Upper Middletown UMC, and Dunbar: Franklin Memorial Umc) Connellsville District’
In 2000, David married Suzanne, a registered nurse, and they are the proud parents of two cats.
 
 
About South Fayette Cooperative Parish
The churches of this newly formed cooperative ministry –Brownfield; Uniontown: Calvary; Uniontown: Christ; Uniontown: Community; Franklin Memorial; Gans; Hopwood; Juniata; Masontown; Mount Pleasant-Dilliner; Point Marion; Smithfield; Trinity: Fairchance; Upper Middletown—service communities in the southern part of Fayette County.. The congregations have worked together in various configurations for many years; they have decided to formalize the kindred spirit that already exists among them.
 
Brownfield United Methodist Church was organized as part of the Methodist Protestant Church shortly after revival meetings were held at the Hutchinson School house in 1882.  The services were conducted by Rev. John McCarty of Fairchance and Rev. George McCollum of Uniontown.  The first building was taken over by the Independent Order of Odd Fellows in 1889, but the church continued holding services there until 1897.  A new building with addition was built in 1926. Since 1965 they have been on a circuit with the Hopwood Church.
 
Uniontown: Calvary United Methodist Church was organized on February 11, 1894 as a Methodist Protestant Church under the leadership of Rev. David E. Minerd.  The church was originally called Minerd Chapel.  An education wing was added in 1932 and second brick education wing was added in 1956.  The church loves to reach out to a variety of community groups and is a great supporter of Jumonville.
 
Uniontown: Christ United Methodist Church has roots dating back to the fall of 1830, when the “reformer” portion of the Uniontown Methodist Episcopal Church (later Asbury) withdrew from that Church and organized a Class of the Methodist Protestant Church in the Fayette County Courthouse.The first building was erected in 1841 and was known as the “Little Old Radical church.”    This was the first congregation served by Reverend John Calvin Broomfield when he came to America in 1896 and who later became one of the two original Bishops elected by the Methodist Protestant Church at the Uniting Conference. 
 
Uniontown:  Community United Methodist Church traces its roots to the spring of 1938, when Mrs. Ethel Steward asked three members of the staff of the McCrum Community House, a Board of Missions project of the Pittsburgh Conference, to start a Sunday School in Evans Manor.  They met in a school house on West Penn Boulevard .  A charter was granted to the Evans Manor Methodist Church in 1948.  In 1998 Evans Manor and Hutchinson Churches merged to form Smock: Community.  It later became part of the Uniontown Larger Parish.
 
Franklin Memorial United Methodist Church:  About 1835 a Methodist Protestant Church was organized in Woodvale School District and a stone church building was erected on land donated by Joseph Paull.  Mr. Paull also donated the land for a burying ground, which is now the Franklin Cemetery.  A new Church was erected in 1875 and a church school addition was built in the early 1900s.  The church has a very active Sunday School and youth program.
 
Gans United Methodist Church was founded in 1905 when a group of families in the area met in a store to organize a Methodist Protestant Class.  The Church was built in 1905, the original structure is still in use.  An annex was added to the church in 1959.
 
Hopwood United Methodist Church was founded in 1828 by members who withdrew from the Methodist Episcopal Church to reform and join the Methodist Protestant Church.  The church being too small, members began to work for the purpose of building a new Church that was dedicated in 1901.  The basement was excavated in 1927 to construct a hall where the church often gathers for fellowship.
 
Juniata United Methodist Church was formed as a Methodist Protestant Church after services were started in the Juniata School on December 1, 1935.  The H.C. Frick Company gave the congregation permission to use one of the company houses for a Church and it was occupied in in 1936. Today Juniata is in converted store with a fellowship hall upstairs.  The congregation loves to worship and share fellowship together.
 
Masontown United Methodist Church was founded in 1819 by Andrew Long, Caleb Hanna, and Alexander McDougle.  The first location was on West Church Street with a cemetery attached. In 1820 this church was almost ruined by a violent storm.  The church was repaired and rebuilt.  It has survived a fire and stood as a testament to the resilient grace and God and the wonderful people of the community.
 
Mount Pleasant-Dilliner United Methodist Church was the northernmost church in the Methodist Episcopal Church South and often referred to as the “Dixie Church.”  The church is very active in missions and supports over 20 different missions in and outside the local area.  The church loves music and is especially known for its mission dinners.
 
Point Marion United Methodist Church was organized in 1843 through the efforts of Ambrose Dilliner, with four members.  They had no regular place of worship, but met from place to place, such as the Polly Rose house, the Mill house, and the Ferry House.  The cornerstone for the current church was laid on September 11, 1921 and was dedicated on April 16, 1922.  The church houses a food pantry and Fijian worship community.
 
Smithfield United Methodist Church:  Reverend Dennis Battee and a Mr. Stevenson organized the Society in 1819 in the home of Dr. Sackett.  James Smith, a member, had applied to the preacher on the Redstone Circuit to organize a Church and having secured a sufficient number the Society was organized.  In 1833 a Camp Meeting was held on General Alexander McClellen’s farm; the Sabbath meeting had over 3,000 in attendance. The church grew and today is a special place of worship for the community.
 
Trinity United Methodist Church was known as The Independent Methodist Church of Fairchance and was organized sometime before 1903.   A new church building was built in 1923, but was later destroyed by fire.  A new church building was erected in 1924 with an addition made in 1965-1966. 
 
Upper Middletown United Methodist Church: The church claims its origin in the Class that met in the John Jones home on Redstone Creek, which was a preaching appointment on the original Redstone Circuit of 1784-1787.  Reverend Robert Ayres preached there regularly in 1786-1787 and on his first visit on June 21, 1786 Bishop Francis Asbury accompanied him.  The record of the event, in the Ayers journal is as follows: “At friend Jones.  Heard Mr. Asbury preach from Genesis 18; 19 and Harry (Black Harry Rosier) from ‘If any man have not the spirit of Christ he is none of his.’ They both spoke very lively and close.  Lodged with Mr. Asbury and rested well.”  That same spirit is still a part of the Upper Middletown Church today.
 

Mark Blair to Serve South Fayette Parish

Announced: 05-20-2018

About Mark R. Blair
Mark R. Blair has been appointed to the South Fayette Cooperative Parish effective July 1, 2018.
Rev. Mark R. Blair was raised in a Christian home where the instruction given at the church was reinforced by his parents at home. As children his mother made all the children gather around for "Bible Time" even if homework was not finished. No excuse was good enough to be excused except being sick or dead. Because of the influence of the church and his parents Rev. Blair knew at the young age of 10 that he needed Jesus. At Revival that Fall, he accepted Jesus as his personal Savior. Then a week before his 16th birthday Rev. Blair’s father passed away and he blamed God for taking him.

For nearly three years he railed at God in anger until he matured enough to realize how insignificant he was in the big picture and how BIG and Powerful our God is! At the age of 17 he married his love, Eileen and they have been married 42 years this August 30th.  They have 4 children 3 girls and 1 boy but lost their oldest daughter 8 years ago. They also have 5 grandchildren.
 
Before receiving his calling Rev. Blair was a contractor and was happy and successful in that line of work. He was involved in his home church and served on just about every committee the church has, but God wanted more from him. When other contractors or their employees would confess their deepest and darkest sins to him he says,  “I didn't know why they were sharing such things with me. As I began to sense maybe God was involved in that activity I began to make excuses why I could not or should not be what He wanted me to be. God kept pushing and pulling so I became a local Lay Speaker, but that wasn't good enough though I still wasn't ready to give in. So God started working on my wife too! She began having dreams that I was going to be asked to speak at a church. In the dream she had the name of the person that would call, the name of the church and the time of their worship service. The next day or a few days later I would get that call with every detail matching.”
 
“The struggle continued and my wife and I talked many times over three years about what to do and how one could be sure if it was a calling for ministry. Finally I was given a vision of my own death three  nights in a row. Each night I died and went to the river that flows from the throne of God. On the other side stood my earthly father and my baby brother that died at 14 months when I was still a child myself. There he was a full grown man, yet I knew who they were. Then a pure white light in a human shape floated out and its voice said the same three phrases Peter heard at the lake shore over the three  nights. This got my attention so I asked my pastor how to know if God was calling me. He began to laugh till I told him this was a serious inquiry. He said he wasn't laughing at me he was laughing about the ways and the length of time God uses to get the people he wants. He said he had been expecting me to come talk with him for quite some time but he didn't say anything to me about it because he was inclined to let God to the pushing, pulling and kick in the pants and said " well, here you are! I think you just answered your own question!" He told me to write a letter to the District Superintendent and get signed up for college.”
 
The following week Rev. Blair went to the college to find out how much it would cost to take two courses plus books. There was no room in his budget to afford classes. He told his wife when he got home and the phone rang during their conversation. It was the bank where he had his business loans as well as his mortgage and the bank wanted to combine the loans at a lower interest and save the Blairs the exact amount he needed for college. God helped many more times through the years of college and at the Garrett Evangelical Seminary, and is still working on him and his family, providing their needs through 24 years of ministry. It is his hope that we can work together to grow the kingdom of God until our time is up and then praise God in his courts! 
 
About South Fayette Cooperative Parish
The churches of this newly formed cooperative ministry –Brownfield; Uniontown: Calvary; Uniontown: Christ; Uniontown: Community; Franklin Memorial; Gans; Hopwood; Juniata; Masontown; Mount Pleasant-Dilliner; Point Marion; Smithfield; Trinity: Fairchance; Upper Middletown—service communities in the southern part of Fayette County.. The congregations have worked together in various configurations for many years; they have decided to formalize the kindred spirit that already exists among them.
 
Brownfield United Methodist Church was organized as part of the Methodist Protestant Church shortly after revival meetings were held at the Hutchinson School house in 1882.  The services were conducted by Rev. John McCarty of Fairchance and Rev. George McCollum of Uniontown.  The first building was taken over by the Independent Order of Odd Fellows in 1889, but the church continued holding services there until 1897.  A new building with addition was built in 1926. Since 1965 they have been on a circuit with the Hopwood Church.
 
Uniontown: Calvary United Methodist Church was organized on February 11, 1894 as a Methodist Protestant Church under the leadership of Rev. David E. Minerd.  The church was originally called Minerd Chapel.  An education wing was added in 1932 and second brick education wing was added in 1956.  The church loves to reach out to a variety of community groups and is a great supporter of Jumonville.
 
Uniontown: Christ United Methodist Church has roots dating back to the fall of 1830, when the “reformer” portion of the Uniontown Methodist Episcopal Church (later Asbury) withdrew from that Church and organized a Class of the Methodist Protestant Church in the Fayette County Courthouse.The first building was erected in 1841 and was known as the “Little Old Radical church.”    This was the first congregation served by Reverend John Calvin Broomfield when he came to America in 1896 and who later became one of the two original Bishops elected by the Methodist Protestant Church at the Uniting Conference. 
 
Uniontown:  Community United Methodist Church traces its roots to the spring of 1938, when Mrs. Ethel Steward asked three members of the staff of the McCrum Community House, a Board of Missions project of the Pittsburgh Conference, to start a Sunday School in Evans Manor.  They met in a school house on West Penn Boulevard .  A charter was granted to the Evans Manor Methodist Church in 1948.  In 1998 Evans Manor and Hutchinson Churches merged to form Smock: Community.  It later became part of the Uniontown Larger Parish.
 
Franklin Memorial United Methodist Church:  About 1835 a Methodist Protestant Church was organized in Woodvale School District and a stone church building was erected on land donated by Joseph Paull.  Mr. Paull also donated the land for a burying ground, which is now the Franklin Cemetery.  A new Church was erected in 1875 and a church school addition was built in the early 1900s.  The church has a very active Sunday School and youth program.
 
Gans United Methodist Church was founded in 1905 when a group of families in the area met in a store to organize a Methodist Protestant Class.  The Church was built in 1905, the original structure is still in use.  An annex was added to the church in 1959.
 
Hopwood United Methodist Church was founded in 1828 by members who withdrew from the Methodist Episcopal Church to reform and join the Methodist Protestant Church.  The church being too small, members began to work for the purpose of building a new Church that was dedicated in 1901.  The basement was excavated in 1927 to construct a hall where the church often gathers for fellowship.
 
Juniata United Methodist Church was formed as a Methodist Protestant Church after services were started in the Juniata School on December 1, 1935.  The H.C. Frick Company gave the congregation permission to use one of the company houses for a Church and it was occupied in in 1936. Today Juniata is in converted store with a fellowship hall upstairs.  The congregation loves to worship and share fellowship together.
 
Masontown United Methodist Church was founded in 1819 by Andrew Long, Caleb Hanna, and Alexander McDougle.  The first location was on West Church Street with a cemetery attached. In 1820 this church was almost ruined by a violent storm.  The church was repaired and rebuilt.  It has survived a fire and stood as a testament to the resilient grace and God and the wonderful people of the community.
 
Mount Pleasant-Dilliner United Methodist Church was the northernmost church in the Methodist Episcopal Church South and often referred to as the “Dixie Church.”  The church is very active in missions and supports over 20 different missions in and outside the local area.  The church loves music and is especially known for its mission dinners.
 
Point Marion United Methodist Church was organized in 1843 through the efforts of Ambrose Dilliner, with four members.  They had no regular place of worship, but met from place to place, such as the Polly Rose house, the Mill house, and the Ferry House.  The cornerstone for the current church was laid on September 11, 1921 and was dedicated on April 16, 1922.  The church houses a food pantry and Fijian worship community.
 
Smithfield United Methodist Church:  Reverend Dennis Battee and a Mr. Stevenson organized the Society in 1819 in the home of Dr. Sackett.  James Smith, a member, had applied to the preacher on the Redstone Circuit to organize a Church and having secured a sufficient number the Society was organized.  In 1833 a Camp Meeting was held on General Alexander McClellen’s farm; the Sabbath meeting had over 3,000 in attendance. The church grew and today is a special place of worship for the community.
 
Trinity United Methodist Church was known as The Independent Methodist Church of Fairchance and was organized sometime before 1903.   A new church building was built in 1923, but was later destroyed by fire.  A new church building was erected in 1924 with an addition made in 1965-1966. 
 
Upper Middletown United Methodist Church: The church claims its origin in the Class that met in the John Jones home on Redstone Creek, which was a preaching appointment on the original Redstone Circuit of 1784-1787.  Reverend Robert Ayres preached there regularly in 1786-1787 and on his first visit on June 21, 1786 Bishop Francis Asbury accompanied him.  The record of the event, in the Ayers journal is as follows: “At friend Jones.  Heard Mr. Asbury preach from Genesis 18; 19 and Harry (Black Harry Rosier) from ‘If any man have not the spirit of Christ he is none of his.’ They both spoke very lively and close.  Lodged with Mr. Asbury and rested well.”  That same spirit is still a part of the Upper Middletown Church today.

Olson to Serve South Fayette Parish

Announced: 05-20-2018

About Diane B. Olson
Diane B. Olson has been appointed to the South Fayette Cooperative Parish effective July 1, 2018.
Diane’s earliest memory of church is sitting on her grandpa’s lap in the balcony during the Christmas Eve service at First Church, Erie. 

"First Church is home to me,” she says. “It was there that I not only learned about God and His love, but where I was also nurtured and drawn out of my introverted self.”  Through participating in clown ministry and a variety of church musicals and plays, Diane discovered she had a voice. Her very first sermon was delivered from the pulpit at First Church and “when I stepped up into that pulpit, I felt God’s love surrounding me and knew I was home.”
 
She was blessed to grow up in Erie and has many fond memories of being at the beach with her Mom and grandparents, no matter what the season!  Diane has worked at the YMCA, First United Methodist Day Care Center, the Erie County Library, Evergreen Shelter for Women and Children, and the Erie City Mission.  A proud graduate of Seton Hill University, Diane earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Religious Studies/Theology, minoring in Psychology and Computer Science, while serving as a Resident Director, Campus Minister and Assistant Manager of the college bookstore.  During her college summers, she was part of the summer staff at Camp Allegheny, Jumonville, and Wesley Woods.
 
Diane’s personal mission statement is: to accept people as they are and where they are and encourage and give them opportunities to grow as disciples of Jesus. As a Licensed Local Pastor, Diane has served Erie: Henderson, Erie: First, Union City: Parade Street/ Spartansburg, and Hopwood/Brownfield UMCs.  Her favorite part of ministry is “never knowing what to expect – God always seems to have a surprise in store for us!”  Through her ministry with kids, Diane has learned to remain a kid at heart, as she tries to live out Mark 10:14 “Don't ever get between them and me. These children are at the very center of life in the kingdom.”  Because “God says: I like youngsters.  I want people to be like them.  Youngsters – twisted, humped, wrinkled, white-bearded – all kinds of youngsters, but youngsters.  There is room for no one else.” (Michel Quoist)
 
About South Fayette Cooperative Parish
The churches of this newly formed cooperative ministry –Brownfield; Uniontown: Calvary; Uniontown: Christ; Uniontown: Community; Franklin Memorial; Gans; Hopwood; Juniata; Masontown; Mount Pleasant-Dilliner; Point Marion; Smithfield; Trinity: Fairchance; Upper Middletown—service communities in the southern part of Fayette County.. The congregations have worked together in various configurations for many years; they have decided to formalize the kindred spirit that already exists among them.
 
Brownfield United Methodist Church was organized as part of the Methodist Protestant Church shortly after revival meetings were held at the Hutchinson School house in 1882.  The services were conducted by Rev. John McCarty of Fairchance and Rev. George McCollum of Uniontown.  The first building was taken over by the Independent Order of Odd Fellows in 1889, but the church continued holding services there until 1897.  A new building with addition was built in 1926. Since 1965 they have been on a circuit with the Hopwood Church.
 
Uniontown: Calvary United Methodist Church was organized on February 11, 1894 as a Methodist Protestant Church under the leadership of Rev. David E. Minerd.  The church was originally called Minerd Chapel.  An education wing was added in 1932 and second brick education wing was added in 1956.  The church loves to reach out to a variety of community groups and is a great supporter of Jumonville.
 
Uniontown: Christ United Methodist Church has roots dating back to the fall of 1830, when the “reformer” portion of the Uniontown Methodist Episcopal Church (later Asbury) withdrew from that Church and organized a Class of the Methodist Protestant Church in the Fayette County Courthouse.The first building was erected in 1841 and was known as the “Little Old Radical church.”    This was the first congregation served by Reverend John Calvin Broomfield when he came to America in 1896 and who later became one of the two original Bishops elected by the Methodist Protestant Church at the Uniting Conference. 
 
Uniontown:  Community United Methodist Church traces its roots to the spring of 1938, when Mrs. Ethel Steward asked three members of the staff of the McCrum Community House, a Board of Missions project of the Pittsburgh Conference, to start a Sunday School in Evans Manor.  They met in a school house on West Penn Boulevard .  A charter was granted to the Evans Manor Methodist Church in 1948.  In 1998 Evans Manor and Hutchinson Churches merged to form Smock: Community.  It later became part of the Uniontown Larger Parish.
 
Franklin Memorial United Methodist Church:  About 1835 a Methodist Protestant Church was organized in Woodvale School District and a stone church building was erected on land donated by Joseph Paull.  Mr. Paull also donated the land for a burying ground, which is now the Franklin Cemetery.  A new Church was erected in 1875 and a church school addition was built in the early 1900s.  The church has a very active Sunday School and youth program.
 
Gans United Methodist Church was founded in 1905 when a group of families in the area met in a store to organize a Methodist Protestant Class.  The Church was built in 1905, the original structure is still in use.  An annex was added to the church in 1959.
 
Hopwood United Methodist Church was founded in 1828 by members who withdrew from the Methodist Episcopal Church to reform and join the Methodist Protestant Church.  The church being too small, members began to work for the purpose of building a new Church that was dedicated in 1901.  The basement was excavated in 1927 to construct a hall where the church often gathers for fellowship.
 
Juniata United Methodist Church was formed as a Methodist Protestant Church after services were started in the Juniata School on December 1, 1935.  The H.C. Frick Company gave the congregation permission to use one of the company houses for a Church and it was occupied in in 1936. Today Juniata is in converted store with a fellowship hall upstairs.  The congregation loves to worship and share fellowship together.
 
Masontown United Methodist Church was founded in 1819 by Andrew Long, Caleb Hanna, and Alexander McDougle.  The first location was on West Church Street with a cemetery attached. In 1820 this church was almost ruined by a violent storm.  The church was repaired and rebuilt.  It has survived a fire and stood as a testament to the resilient grace and God and the wonderful people of the community.
 
Mount Pleasant-Dilliner United Methodist Church was the northernmost church in the Methodist Episcopal Church South and often referred to as the “Dixie Church.”  The church is very active in missions and supports over 20 different missions in and outside the local area.  The church loves music and is especially known for its mission dinners.
 
Point Marion United Methodist Church was organized in 1843 through the efforts of Ambrose Dilliner, with four members.  They had no regular place of worship, but met from place to place, such as the Polly Rose house, the Mill house, and the Ferry House.  The cornerstone for the current church was laid on September 11, 1921 and was dedicated on April 16, 1922.  The church houses a food pantry and Fijian worship community.
 
Smithfield United Methodist Church:  Reverend Dennis Battee and a Mr. Stevenson organized the Society in 1819 in the home of Dr. Sackett.  James Smith, a member, had applied to the preacher on the Redstone Circuit to organize a Church and having secured a sufficient number the Society was organized.  In 1833 a Camp Meeting was held on General Alexander McClellen’s farm; the Sabbath meeting had over 3,000 in attendance. The church grew and today is a special place of worship for the community.
 
Trinity United Methodist Church was known as The Independent Methodist Church of Fairchance and was organized sometime before 1903.   A new church building was built in 1923, but was later destroyed by fire.  A new church building was erected in 1924 with an addition made in 1965-1966. 
 
Upper Middletown United Methodist Church: The church claims its origin in the Class that met in the John Jones home on Redstone Creek, which was a preaching appointment on the original Redstone Circuit of 1784-1787.  Reverend Robert Ayres preached there regularly in 1786-1787 and on his first visit on June 21, 1786 Bishop Francis Asbury accompanied him.  The record of the event, in the Ayers journal is as follows: “At friend Jones.  Heard Mr. Asbury preach from Genesis 18; 19 and Harry (Black Harry Rosier) from ‘If any man have not the spirit of Christ he is none of his.’ They both spoke very lively and close.  Lodged with Mr. Asbury and rested well.”  That same spirit is still a part of the Upper Middletown Church today.

Timothy Rogers to serve South Fayette Parish

Announced: 05-20-2018

About Timothy M. Rogers
Timothy M. Rogers has been appointed to the South Fayette Cooperative Parish effective July 1, 2018.
Pastor Tim grew up in the Oakland-Dempseytown United Methodist Church in Franklin District, where he experienced the length and width of the conference traveling as a youth and receiving Jesus Christ as his Savior at Wesley Woods Camp.

His wife Shirley grew up nearby at Sandy Lake, Pa.  sharing her faith at her church. After graduating from Oil City High School, he attended Grove City College and feeling the call to be a pastor he attended Asbury Theological Seminary, spending a few years in Kentucky. 

He returned to Pennsylvania in March of 1984 and was appointed to Valier Charge. He enjoyed the friendliness of the churches while preaching, teaching, leading camp events and sharing the Good News of the Gospel. His call has led him to work with all ages in the country and city locations. Through the call to discipleship he has asked many young people and adults to take the mercy and love of the Gospel beyond the walls of the church by serving in mission and asking, "How can we serve the community today?" The Rogers have traveled with members, young and old to mission work across the conference, New Jersey and West Virginia.
 
This year Tim and Shirley will celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary and time of sharing ministry together. They have a grown daughter and two granddaughters. They cherish their families and the experience of traveling to Israel, across the United States, relaxing by the ocean and enjoying all parts of Pennsylvania.
         
Pastor Tim has served the Valier Charge, Jackson Center Charge, Addison Charge, Benezette Charge including Sterling Run and Sinnamahoning churches. He has served Uniontown-Christ and Trinity Fairchance and is currently serving at  the South Uniontown Cooperative with Uniontown - Christ, Trinity Fairchance, Hopwood and Brownfield Churches.
 
About South Fayette Parish
The churches of this newly formed cooperative ministry –Brownfield; Uniontown: Calvary; Uniontown: Christ; Uniontown: Community; Franklin Memorial; Gans; Hopwood; Juniata; Masontown; Mount Pleasant-Dilliner; Point Marion; Smithfield; Trinity: Fairchance; Upper Middletown—service communities in the southern part of Fayette County.. The congregations have worked together in various configurations for many years; they have decided to formalize the kindred spirit that already exists among them.
 
Brownfield United Methodist Church was organized as part of the Methodist Protestant Church shortly after revival meetings were held at the Hutchinson School house in 1882.  The services were conducted by Rev. John McCarty of Fairchance and Rev. George McCollum of Uniontown.  The first building was taken over by the Independent Order of Odd Fellows in 1889, but the church continued holding services there until 1897.  A new building with addition was built in 1926. Since 1965 they have been on a circuit with the Hopwood Church.
 
Uniontown: Calvary United Methodist Church was organized on February 11, 1894 as a Methodist Protestant Church under the leadership of Rev. David E. Minerd.  The church was originally called Minerd Chapel.  An education wing was added in 1932 and second brick education wing was added in 1956.  The church loves to reach out to a variety of community groups and is a great supporter of Jumonville.
 
Uniontown: Christ United Methodist Church has roots dating back to the fall of 1830, when the “reformer” portion of the Uniontown Methodist Episcopal Church (later Asbury) withdrew from that Church and organized a Class of the Methodist Protestant Church in the Fayette County Courthouse.The first building was erected in 1841 and was known as the “Little Old Radical church.”    This was the first congregation served by Reverend John Calvin Broomfield when he came to America in 1896 and who later became one of the two original Bishops elected by the Methodist Protestant Church at the Uniting Conference. 
 
Uniontown:  Community United Methodist Church traces its roots to the spring of 1938, when Mrs. Ethel Steward asked three members of the staff of the McCrum Community House, a Board of Missions project of the Pittsburgh Conference, to start a Sunday School in Evans Manor.  They met in a school house on West Penn Boulevard .  A charter was granted to the Evans Manor Methodist Church in 1948.  In 1998 Evans Manor and Hutchinson Churches merged to form Smock: Community.  It later became part of the Uniontown Larger Parish.
 
Franklin Memorial United Methodist Church:  About 1835 a Methodist Protestant Church was organized in Woodvale School District and a stone church building was erected on land donated by Joseph Paull.  Mr. Paull also donated the land for a burying ground, which is now the Franklin Cemetery.  A new Church was erected in 1875 and a church school addition was built in the early 1900s.  The church has a very active Sunday School and youth program.
 
Gans United Methodist Church was founded in 1905 when a group of families in the area met in a store to organize a Methodist Protestant Class.  The Church was built in 1905, the original structure is still in use.  An annex was added to the church in 1959.
 
Hopwood United Methodist Church was founded in 1828 by members who withdrew from the Methodist Episcopal Church to reform and join the Methodist Protestant Church.  The church being too small, members began to work for the purpose of building a new Church that was dedicated in 1901.  The basement was excavated in 1927 to construct a hall where the church often gathers for fellowship.
 
Juniata United Methodist Church was formed as a Methodist Protestant Church after services were started in the Juniata School on December 1, 1935.  The H.C. Frick Company gave the congregation permission to use one of the company houses for a Church and it was occupied in in 1936. Today Juniata is in converted store with a fellowship hall upstairs.  The congregation loves to worship and share fellowship together.
 
Masontown United Methodist Church was founded in 1819 by Andrew Long, Caleb Hanna, and Alexander McDougle.  The first location was on West Church Street with a cemetery attached. In 1820 this church was almost ruined by a violent storm.  The church was repaired and rebuilt.  It has survived a fire and stood as a testament to the resilient grace and God and the wonderful people of the community.
 
Mount Pleasant-Dilliner United Methodist Church was the northernmost church in the Methodist Episcopal Church South and often referred to as the “Dixie Church.”  The church is very active in missions and supports over 20 different missions in and outside the local area.  The church loves music and is especially known for its mission dinners.
 
Point Marion United Methodist Church was organized in 1843 through the efforts of Ambrose Dilliner, with four members.  They had no regular place of worship, but met from place to place, such as the Polly Rose house, the Mill house, and the Ferry House.  The cornerstone for the current church was laid on September 11, 1921 and was dedicated on April 16, 1922.  The church houses a food pantry and Fijian worship community.
 
Smithfield United Methodist Church:  Reverend Dennis Battee and a Mr. Stevenson organized the Society in 1819 in the home of Dr. Sackett.  James Smith, a member, had applied to the preacher on the Redstone Circuit to organize a Church and having secured a sufficient number the Society was organized.  In 1833 a Camp Meeting was held on General Alexander McClellen’s farm; the Sabbath meeting had over 3,000 in attendance. The church grew and today is a special place of worship for the community.
 
Trinity United Methodist Church was known as The Independent Methodist Church of Fairchance and was organized sometime before 1903.   A new church building was built in 1923, but was later destroyed by fire.  A new church building was erected in 1924 with an addition made in 1965-1966. 
 
Upper Middletown United Methodist Church: The church claims its origin in the Class that met in the John Jones home on Redstone Creek, which was a preaching appointment on the original Redstone Circuit of 1784-1787.  Reverend Robert Ayres preached there regularly in 1786-1787 and on his first visit on June 21, 1786 Bishop Francis Asbury accompanied him.  The record of the event, in the Ayers journal is as follows: “At friend Jones.  Heard Mr. Asbury preach from Genesis 18; 19 and Harry (Black Harry Rosier) from ‘If any man have not the spirit of Christ he is none of his.’ They both spoke very lively and close.  Lodged with Mr. Asbury and rested well.”  That same spirit is still a part of the Upper Middletown Church today.
 

Jude Urso To Serve Monogahela First UMC

Announced: 05-13-2018

About Jude Urso
From as far back as he can remember, Jude Urso has been aware of “God’s call on his life.”  From childhood others in his life confirmed what Jude “knew in his own heart.”  At the same time, Jude also knew “he didn’t want to be a pastor”.  It turns out (as it often does), God had other plans!  As a student attending Mercyhurst University, God’s plans also became clear to him.  Jude describes his experience this way: “While I was working on my degree at Mercyhurst University the call became stronger and stronger. I went on a mission trip to Mexico City the summer before my final year of college.  When I got there the only room available was with the youth pastor of the group.  He was the one who helped me understand that God was calling me into ministry and that I had no other choice, but to answer that call.”  Soon afterward Jude was licensed as a student pastor in the Conference and enrolled in seminary. The rest is history.

It’s also a history in which Jude describes seeing “the Lord work in amazing ways” in his life, the life of the churches and communities he has been privileged to serve, and the people God entrusted to him as their pastor.  Reaching beyond the walls of the church as it’s often known, Jude has served as a firefighter, as an Eagle Scout providing adult leadership in the scouting program, served on community boards and agencies, and actively participated in local clergy ministeriums and ecumenical services and ministries.
 
One of Jude’s strengths is he loves people.  Preaching, teaching and administration are also strengths that Jude brings to the table.  While not as young as he once was, Jude also has made it known he still has what it takes to stay up all night at youth events. Jude’s pastoral ministry appointments include: Bethel and White Oak UMCs, Hickory Grove UMC, Creekside and Tanoma UMCs, Creekside and Trinity UMC, where he served as Trinity’s youth pastor, and Windover Hills UMC.  Jude presently serves in an Extension Ministry appointment at Jumonville as the Director of Business and Operations. In addition to his ministry in the local church and as part of the Conference’s Camping and Retreat Ministries, Jude has also served as a member of the Conference Sessions Team and on the Conference Council on Finance and Administration.
 
Jude is married to Emily. Together they have three beautiful daughters – Mary,13; Sarah,11, and Rachel, 5. Emily is employed at the Ringgold Middle School, is in her senior year at California University and is a gifted musician. Sarah and Rachel are aspiring dancers and Mary is active in Girl Scouts.
 
About Monongahela First UMC
Monongahela, Pennsylvania’s second smallest chartered city, has been described as a “rising star” in Washington County and the Mon Valley. More and more people are calling Monongahela home, especially young people. A city of an estimated 4,300 persons, Monongahela is an active community hosting between 60 and 110 community-centered activities each month. Located in the heart of the city, Monongahela First is the largest Protestant church in town. Known for its outreaching love and the high value church members place on relationships, Monongahela First looks ahead committed to find creative ways to meet people “where they are” while continuing to “change the world by making disciples of Jesus Christ who make more disciples”. The church has a growing discipleship program with a new adult Sunday school class and plans to launch a beginners Sunday school for grades K-2 this fall.

The church building serves as the site for both the church’s food pantry and the community food bank.  Mon First is also one of several churches in the community that works to dismantle racism and address injustice and oppression in the Mon Valley and beyond. When asked what kind of church they believe Jesus is calling them to be in the next five years, church leaders responded by saying, “More mission-centered and mission-based; relevant; more community active and engaging; being a part of the community at-large, including providing leadership in the community beyond the walls of the church; more open to who and what God sends us; having a deeper and better understanding of the gospel and a more Christ-like “outreaching” grace for all.”
 

Henderson Appointed to Uniontown: Asbury UMC

Announced: 05-06-2018

About Donald Henderson
After graduating from Asbury College in 1982, Don Henderson met and wed Lori in the Oil City area. Don was commissioned as a Surface Line Officer in the US Navy. After five years of service and three children, they returned to Oil City and served the Bethel/Plumer charge while Don studied at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. After seminary, Don and Lori served the Shawnee Charge in Bedford County for 13 years. In 2006, they moved to the Good Shepherd Parish in Indiana District, where they have served since. Their three children are married and have given them four granddaughters. Another grandchild is due in July. 
 
Don and Lori's ministry has emphasized a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. In their view, evangelism and discipleship are of utmost importance in the church. Empowered by prayer, praise and understanding of the Bible, their churches have sought to reach out globally and locally in missions. Through prayer, teaching, preaching, hands on work and leadership, Don and Lori seek to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.
About Uniontown:Asbury UMC
The church was the central point of the original Redstone Circuit of 1784. The widow Ann Murphy moved to her farm about one mile west of Uniontown in 1781.  There was occasional Methodist preaching in Uniontown by Robert Worster and John Todd between 1777 and 1784.  When Richard Owings laid out the nucleaus of the Redstone circuit in the fall of 1783, its starting point was the Murphy home and when Jon Cooper and Samuel Breeze arrived in 1784 to organize the Circuit, Uniontown was the place they commenced.  Asbury was the site for the first three district conferences west of the mountains in 1788,1790and 1792 .  Today Asbury has a traditional morning worship and an informal Sunday evening service where a meal is served to the community.
 

Kephart To Serve Homestead Park

Announced: 04-29-2018

About Donald Kephart
Rev. Donald “Don” Kephart, who has served the past eight years as pastor of Asbury UMC in Uniontown, will be appointed as senior pastor of Homestead Park UMC, effective July 1. 
 
Don is a leader who actively seeks laity involvement in the life of the church and strives to build consensus. Congregational care is one of his principal gifts for ministry. He is a dynamic preacher and engaging teacher who helps people apply God’s word to their lives and see their full potential in Christ.
 
As an effective administrator, Don has led congregations through change and successful capital campaigns. His entrepreneurial spirit has helped his congregations develop various new income streams in addition to offering plate giving.
 
Don is comfortable leading traditional, contemporary, and blended worship services. He has a passion for ministry with young families and describes himself as a “community pastor” who constantly seeks creative ways to engage the community. He is active in the ecumenical ministry of the Uniontown Area Ministerium and The Uniontown UMC Shared Ministries.
 
He serves on the Conference Committee of Finance and Administration and Connellsville District’s Committee on Ministry.  He has received Mosaix training for multi-cultural congregational development opportunities and currently serves on a Conference subcommittee working to develop leadership internships for Africa-Americans and other persons of color in our Conference.
 
Don was born on and grew up on the North Side of Pittsburgh. He and wife Julie are the parents of three adult children. He is a sports enthusiast who has worked for the West Virginia Blackbears, a Pirates minor league affiliate.  He enjoys bicycling and riding his Suzuki C50T Boulevard 800 Cruiser motorcycle.  He looks forward to serving at Homestead Park.
 
About Homestead Park United Methodist Church
Homestead Park UMC, established in 1966, is a multi-generational suburban church in the close-knit Borough of Munhall in the Steel Valley area. Like the area, the congregation is one with heart, soul, and the fortitude to adapt, reinvent, and push forward.
 
Worship experiences include a 6 p.m. Saturday evening contemporary service and a Sunday 10 a.m. traditional/blended worship service with a praise band.
 
Nurture ministries include pastor and laity-led Bible studies, covenant discipleship classes, small groups, membership mentoring, and Sunday school and spiritual formation classes for persons of all ages.  There is an active women’s ministry and the annual Women’s Retreat is well attended.
 
The church building also functions as a community center.  It hosts a variety of groups including Scouts, senior groups, and support groups.  Its summer VBS program is open to all children in the community. 
 
Through Sponsor a Child Ministry under Compassion International, the congregation supports children in developing countries.  The church offers a Begin-der-garten pre-school program with a top-notch staff and curriculum. 
 
The church operates a food pantry and bread and pastry ministry; provides lunches each Saturday for persons who are homeless, and has a ministry at five area nursing homes that includes providing crocheted afghans.  It connects with military personnel and college students with its Away from Home Ministry and Shoe Box Ministry.  Through its H.E.L.P.S. Ministry, a group of lay volunteers serve others by doing small repairs, cutting grass, and other help.
 
The congregation seeks to grow and live more fully into its vision as people who reflect the compassion, grace, love, justice and peace of Christ and anticipates more engagement with the community and increased cooperation with other area UM churches.  
 

Brinker to serve Connellsville Cooperative Parish

Announced: 04-22-2018

About MIchael Brinker
Michael E. Brinker was born in Connellsville in 1961 and graduated from Connellsville High School with the class of ‘79.  Mike attended Calvary Assembly of God Church in South Connellsville as a child and was baptized at the age of 14. From there he learned the ways of the world while being raised by a single parent. He worked at Pechin Market in Dunbar, where he met the love of his live Leila Bala, from 1979-1999. He and Leila married on April 9, 1981 and began attending her home church Christ UMC in Uniontown and Chalk Hill UMC. Leila gave birth to twin boys, Christopher and Corey, on June 20 1988.
 
After being part of a men’s Bible study, Mike found his calling at a Promise Keepers conference in the 1990s. He attended lay school to become a lay speaker, got a job at the former Commercial Stone limestone mine, now Hanson Aggregates in Connellsville, in 1999 and is still employed there as a heavy equipment / drill operator under the local 66 IUOE.
 
Mike says he is a part-time employee for Hanson working 50+ hours a week, but is a full time servant of The Most High God, reaching out to all in need of God’s Love and redeeming Grace. His primary mission field is the family God has blessed him with. He is the proud grandfather of three, two of whom, Greyson Emily and Avery Michael, are at home with the Lord. He is still blessed to hear 2-year-old Killian Dante Lou tell his Pap he loves him.
 
Mike graduated from licensing school in April 2016, and experienced a myocardial infarction about three months later. When he recovered, he decided to pursue certified lay ministry instead of serving as a Licensed Local Pastor. He faithfully and joyfully answered the call to serve God in the four-point Connellsville Covenant Community Charge, where he has served since July 1, 2015.
 
About Connellsville Cooperative Parish
The churches of this newly formed cooperative ministry – Albright, Connellsville; Calvary, Acme; Davistown: Indian Head; Greenwood, Connellsville; Mill Run; Mount Salem; Normalville; Ohiopyle; Otterbein, Connellsville; Pennsville; Pleasant Hill; Wesley, Connellsville; and Wesley, Dunbar—serve  communities around the Connellsville Area School District. The congregations have worked together in various configurations for many years; they have decided to formalize the kindred spirit that already exists among them.
 
Albright, Connellsville was organized as part of the Evangelical Association and was first known as the White Rock Appointment in 1989.  In 1900 a building was erected on Searson Street near Wine.  The new sanctuary was built in 1930 and an education unit added in 1956.  Albright will serve as the lead church in the Connellsville Cooperative Parish.
 
Calvary, Acme: Calvary was a split from the Mount Olivet Evangelical association church in 1891.  It became Calvary United Evangelical Church.  The building was dedicated in 1896.  The church had a basement added in 1951-195 and an educational unit in 1969 to 1972.  The building was cased in brick. The church added a beautiful picnic pavilion for Vacation Bible School and church meetings.

Davistown Indian Head:   Begun possibly as early as 1814, it was organized in 1831 as a member of the Evangelical Association.  A frame building was erected in 1845, known as Bethlehem Evangelical church.  On May 2, 1929 it was wrecked by a tornado.  Plans were made to rebuild.  A brick building on the opposite side of the road was dedicated on June 22, 1931.
 
Greenwood, Connellsville:  The original planning for a Church in this section of Connellsville was done in the Crawford School Building, after a split with the First Methodist Episcopal Church of Connellsville, over the choice of where a new church was needed and should be built.   McKeesport District Superintendent Reverend John J. Hill organized Greenwood on May 11, 1921 in the Old Greenwood School house on the West Side.  The corner stone for the new church was laid June 14, 1922.  I was dedicated on May 26, 1926.  Built from native stone the Church presents an inviting appearance, Gothic structure being careered out in both exterior and interior building.
 
Mill Run:  Mill Run UMC is located on PA Rte. 381 in the community of Mill Run. The congregation worships in a modern facility. The worship service begins at 11:00 am on Sunday morning.The people at Mill Run support various missions, families in need and provide meals both delivered and in the church.  A winter coat drive and a shoe box collection are annual events held at the church. Mill Run UMC and Indian Creek Baptist Church worship together Sunday evening in a combined service at 7:00 pm during the school year and at 7:30 pm during the summer. The worship site alternates between the two church. Mill Run UMC is a member of the Fayette County Sunday School Association.
 
Mount Salem:  The first services were held in the home of Jeremiah Stouffer.  In1868 the services were moved to the Stouffer School House.  The church was built in 1881 as the Stouffer Evangelical Association Church.  Additions to the church were made in 1959 and 1967.  The church in enjoys serving Easter breakfast and having community campfires.
 
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.
Ohiopyle: Ohiopyle UMC is located at Sherman St. in the borough of Ohiopyle. The community of Ohiopyle is a tourist destination with the Youghihaney River running through the town. Outdoor activities, nearby camping and white water rafting draw people to Ohiopyle. Though the congregation is small – it offers assistance to support organizations and its strength is fellowship among its members
Otterbein, Connellsville:  Otterbein was organized in January 1901 with services held at Kooser’s Hall and Stader’s Hall.  The Church was dedicated February 1, 1903.  Originally, First Church, it became Otterbein Church in 1970 with the merger and on January 1, 1974 merged with Central Church which was destroyed by a fire and became the Otterbein United Methodist Church.  The church holds the trust funds for the Connellsville Area Community Ministries.
 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.
 Pleasant Hill:  Pleasant Hill also known as Springfield: Pleasant Hill because of its history on the Springfield Circuit first held its meeting about 1875 in a schoolhouse  In 1889 a Church was built.  An educational unit was added in 1955.  The church loves singing and studying God’s Word.
 Wesley, Connellsville:  A Methodist Class was formed in the home of Zachariah Connell, for whom Connellsville is named, in the 1790’s.  It was a preaching place on the Pittsburgh Circuit.  When Pittsburgh was made a Station in 1811 Connellsville became the head of the Circuit.  It continued to have various Circuit relationship until 1863 when it became a station appointment.  The fir Church was a stone building.  Bishop Francis Asbury dedicated the partially completed binding on July 10, 1808. The church grew several other church buildings were built until it moved to its present location on Pittsburgh Street in 1925. 
Wesley, Dunbar:  In 1876 a group of persons from Dunbar community who were going to Connellsville to worship field that there were enough of them to form their own congregation in Dunbar.  At first they met in the YMCA.  In 1881 they moved their meeting place to a School House.  They laid the cornerstone for a Church building on July 9, 1887 and it was dedicated on November 17th of that year.  This building was destroyed by fire and replaced with the current building in 1903.

Lamb Appointed to Connellsville Parish

Announced: 04-22-2018

About Steven M. Lamb

Steven M. Lamb has been appointed to be the lead pastor of the Connellsville Cooperative Parish, effective July 1, 2018.  Born and raised on a small farm outside of Armagh, PA,  he was a lay speaker at the Armagh United Methodist Church when he received his call to ministry while working at Specialty Bar Products in Blairsville. 

Steve served a local appointment at Mt. Olive (Jackson)UMC,  before committing to be a student pastor in the itinerant system and moving to the Timblin Charge.  After graduation from IUP, Steve attended Ashland Theological Seminary in Ohio and served the Paradise Hill UMC in Ashland.  After earning his MDiv, Steve returned to Pennsylvania and began serving the Sheakleyville Charge. The past six years, Steve has served at Connellsville: Albright and at the Pleasant Hill United Methodist Church.

At the start of his first appointment, Steve was given these words of advice: “Love them.”  This has been his mission statement since the beginning and continues to be his point of reference in all aspects of his life.  Love as Jesus loved, and God will make a way.

Steve has been happily married to his wife Beverly for 38 years.  They have three adult children, Lindsey Olexa of Seward, PA, and sons Michael of Westmont and Matthew of Windber.  He also has two wonderful grandchildren, Morgan and Aubrey Olexa.

Steve enjoys walking, spending time with his family, reading several different genres from Wesley to Batman, and visiting with people.  
 
About Connellsville Coorperative Parish
The churches of this newly formed cooperative ministry – Albright, Connellsville; Calvary, Acme; Davistown: Indian Head; Greenwood, Connellsville; Mill Run; Mount Salem; Normalville; Ohiopyle; Otterbein, Connellsville; Pennsville; Pleasant Hill; Wesley, Connellsville; and Wesley, Dunbar—serve  communities around the Connellsville Area School District. The congregations have worked together in various configurations for many years; they have decided to formalize the kindred spirit that already exists among them.
 
Albright, Connellsville was organized as part of the Evangelical Association and was first known as the White Rock Appointment in 1989.  In 1900 a building was erected on Searson Street near Wine.  The new sanctuary was built in 1930 and an education unit added in 1956.  Albright will serve as the lead church in the Connellsville Cooperative Parish.
 
Calvary, Acme: Calvary was a split from the Mount Olivet Evangelical association church in 1891.  It became Calvary United Evangelical Church.  The building was dedicated in 1896.  The church had a basement added in 1951-195 and an educational unit in 1969 to 1972.  The building was cased in brick. The church added a beautiful picnic pavilion for Vacation Bible School and church meetings.

Davistown Indian Head:   Begun possibly as early as 1814, it was organized in 1831 as a member of the Evangelical Association.  A frame building was erected in 1845, known as Bethlehem Evangelical church.  On May 2, 1929 it was wrecked by a tornado.  Plans were made to rebuild.  A brick building on the opposite side of the road was dedicated on June 22, 1931.
 
Greenwood, Connellsville:  The original planning for a Church in this section of Connellsville was done in the Crawford School Building, after a split with the First Methodist Episcopal Church of Connellsville, over the choice of where a new church was needed and should be built.   McKeesport District Superintendent Reverend John J. Hill organized Greenwood on May 11, 1921 in the Old Greenwood School house on the West Side.  The corner stone for the new church was laid June 14, 1922.  I was dedicated on May 26, 1926.  Built from native stone the Church presents an inviting appearance, Gothic structure being careered out in both exterior and interior building.
 
Mill Run:  Mill Run UMC is located on PA Rte. 381 in the community of Mill Run. The congregation worships in a modern facility. The worship service begins at 11:00 am on Sunday morning.The people at Mill Run support various missions, families in need and provide meals both delivered and in the church.  A winter coat drive and a shoe box collection are annual events held at the church. Mill Run UMC and Indian Creek Baptist Church worship together Sunday evening in a combined service at 7:00 pm during the school year and at 7:30 pm during the summer. The worship site alternates between the two church. Mill Run UMC is a member of the Fayette County Sunday School Association.
 
Mount Salem:  The first services were held in the home of Jeremiah Stouffer.  In1868 the services were moved to the Stouffer School House.  The church was built in 1881 as the Stouffer Evangelical Association Church.  Additions to the church were made in 1959 and 1967.  The church in enjoys serving Easter breakfast and having community campfires.
 
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.
Ohiopyle: Ohiopyle UMC is located at Sherman St. in the borough of Ohiopyle. The community of Ohiopyle is a tourist destination with the Youghihaney River running through the town. Outdoor activities, nearby camping and white water rafting draw people to Ohiopyle. Though the congregation is small – it offers assistance to support organizations and its strength is fellowship among its members
Otterbein, Connellsville:  Otterbein was organized in January 1901 with services held at Kooser’s Hall and Stader’s Hall.  The Church was dedicated February 1, 1903.  Originally, First Church, it became Otterbein Church in 1970 with the merger and on January 1, 1974 merged with Central Church which was destroyed by a fire and became the Otterbein United Methodist Church.  The church holds the trust funds for the Connellsville Area Community Ministries.
 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.
 Pleasant Hill:  Pleasant Hill also known as Springfield: Pleasant Hill because of its history on the Springfield Circuit first held its meeting about 1875 in a schoolhouse  In 1889 a Church was built.  An educational unit was added in 1955.  The church loves singing and studying God’s Word.
 Wesley, Connellsville:  A Methodist Class was formed in the home of Zachariah Connell, for whom Connellsville is named, in the 1790’s.  It was a preaching place on the Pittsburgh Circuit.  When Pittsburgh was made a Station in 1811 Connellsville became the head of the Circuit.  It continued to have various Circuit relationship until 1863 when it became a station appointment.  The fir Church was a stone building.  Bishop Francis Asbury dedicated the partially completed binding on July 10, 1808. The church grew several other church buildings were built until it moved to its present location on Pittsburgh Street in 1925. 
Wesley, Dunbar:  In 1876 a group of persons from Dunbar community who were going to Connellsville to worship field that there were enough of them to form their own congregation in Dunbar.  At first they met in the YMCA.  In 1881 they moved their meeting place to a School House.  They laid the cornerstone for a Church building on July 9, 1887 and it was dedicated on November 17th of that year.  This building was destroyed by fire and replaced with the current building in 1903.

Leona Logan Appointed to Connellsville Parish

Announced: 04-22-2018

About Leona Logan
Leona Logan is a mother of four, grandmother of 11, a preacher's wife (married to Rev. John Logan), a registered nurse since 1978 and a certified nurse midwife since 1995. She graduated in 1975 from Concordia College, Bronxville, NY, with an associate degree in psychology. She then attended Emory University, Atlanta, Ga. and earned her BSN in nursing and psychology. She completed her graduate education in midwifery at Frontier Nursing University, Hyden, KY, in 1995. Currently, she is attending the Course of Study as a local pastor as she answers God's call to pastoral ministry. Her first and current appointment is the Yough Charge as an associate pastor.

 Leona's first language was German, and she was the first midwife that was not wearing an Amish bonnet and the first non-physician given hospital delivery privileges at Punxsutawney Hospital in Jefferson County. In her spare time, she loves to sing ("when no one is home"), sketch, paint Bob Ross landscapes, and talk without moving her lips with her sidekick puppet Hildegard. She loves spending time with her grandchildren, the sunshine, the seashore, kayaking with her husband and family reunions.
 
In her midwifery career, she has had the privilege to deliver hundreds of babies and provide health care for thousands of women. She has provided care for incarcerated women, those struggling with addictions and disabilities as well as facilitated numerous women's support groups throughout the years.

Leona's passion for evangelism and missions might be genetic as her grandfather was a pastor during WWII in East Germany; her brother is a pastor, and her uncle and aunt were missionaries in Africa. Leona has participated in mission trips to the Dominican Republic with the Conference's East German Partnership, and last year spent a week in Kenya as part of a medical mission team to an orphanage and its community. Her zeal for Christ is contagious.
 
Leona looks forward to learning, loving, and serving with the people of the Connellsville Cooperative Parish.
 
About Connellsville Cooperative Parish
The churches of this newly formed cooperative ministry – Albright, Connellsville; Calvary, Acme; Davistown: Indian Head; Greenwood, Connellsville; Mill Run; Mount Salem; Normalville; Ohiopyle; Otterbein, Connellsville; Pennsville; Pleasant Hill; Wesley, Connellsville; and Wesley, Dunbar—serve  communities around the Connellsville Area School District. The congregations have worked together in various configurations for many years; they have decided to formalize the kindred spirit that already exists among them.
 
Albright, Connellsville was organized as part of the Evangelical Association and was first known as the White Rock Appointment in 1989.  In 1900 a building was erected on Searson Street near Wine.  The new sanctuary was built in 1930 and an education unit added in 1956.  Albright will serve as the lead church in the Connellsville Cooperative Parish.
 
Calvary, Acme: Calvary was a split from the Mount Olivet Evangelical association church in 1891.  It became Calvary United Evangelical Church.  The building was dedicated in 1896.  The church had a basement added in 1951-195 and an educational unit in 1969 to 1972.  The building was cased in brick. The church added a beautiful picnic pavilion for Vacation Bible School and church meetings.

Davistown Indian Head:   Begun possibly as early as 1814, it was organized in 1831 as a member of the Evangelical Association.  A frame building was erected in 1845, known as Bethlehem Evangelical church.  On May 2, 1929 it was wrecked by a tornado.  Plans were made to rebuild.  A brick building on the opposite side of the road was dedicated on June 22, 1931.
 
Greenwood, Connellsville:  The original planning for a Church in this section of Connellsville was done in the Crawford School Building, after a split with the First Methodist Episcopal Church of Connellsville, over the choice of where a new church was needed and should be built.   McKeesport District Superintendent Reverend John J. Hill organized Greenwood on May 11, 1921 in the Old Greenwood School house on the West Side.  The corner stone for the new church was laid June 14, 1922.  I was dedicated on May 26, 1926.  Built from native stone the Church presents an inviting appearance, Gothic structure being careered out in both exterior and interior building.
 
Mill Run:  Mill Run UMC is located on PA Rte. 381 in the community of Mill Run. The congregation worships in a modern facility. The worship service begins at 11:00 am on Sunday morning.The people at Mill Run support various missions, families in need and provide meals both delivered and in the church.  A winter coat drive and a shoe box collection are annual events held at the church. Mill Run UMC and Indian Creek Baptist Church worship together Sunday evening in a combined service at 7:00 pm during the school year and at 7:30 pm during the summer. The worship site alternates between the two church. Mill Run UMC is a member of the Fayette County Sunday School Association.
 
Mount Salem:  The first services were held in the home of Jeremiah Stouffer.  In1868 the services were moved to the Stouffer School House.  The church was built in 1881 as the Stouffer Evangelical Association Church.  Additions to the church were made in 1959 and 1967.  The church in enjoys serving Easter breakfast and having community campfires.
 
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.
Ohiopyle: Ohiopyle UMC is located at Sherman St. in the borough of Ohiopyle. The community of Ohiopyle is a tourist destination with the Youghihaney River running through the town. Outdoor activities, nearby camping and white water rafting draw people to Ohiopyle. Though the congregation is small – it offers assistance to support organizations and its strength is fellowship among its members
Otterbein, Connellsville:  Otterbein was organized in January 1901 with services held at Kooser’s Hall and Stader’s Hall.  The Church was dedicated February 1, 1903.  Originally, First Church, it became Otterbein Church in 1970 with the merger and on January 1, 1974 merged with Central Church which was destroyed by a fire and became the Otterbein United Methodist Church.  The church holds the trust funds for the Connellsville Area Community Ministries.
 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.
 Pleasant Hill:  Pleasant Hill also known as Springfield: Pleasant Hill because of its history on the Springfield Circuit first held its meeting about 1875 in a schoolhouse  In 1889 a Church was built.  An educational unit was added in 1955.  The church loves singing and studying God’s Word.
 Wesley, Connellsville:  A Methodist Class was formed in the home of Zachariah Connell, for whom Connellsville is named, in the 1790’s.  It was a preaching place on the Pittsburgh Circuit.  When Pittsburgh was made a Station in 1811 Connellsville became the head of the Circuit.  It continued to have various Circuit relationship until 1863 when it became a station appointment.  The fir Church was a stone building.  Bishop Francis Asbury dedicated the partially completed binding on July 10, 1808. The church grew several other church buildings were built until it moved to its present location on Pittsburgh Street in 1925. 
Wesley, Dunbar:  In 1876 a group of persons from Dunbar community who were going to Connellsville to worship field that there were enough of them to form their own congregation in Dunbar.  At first they met in the YMCA.  In 1881 they moved their meeting place to a School House.  They laid the cornerstone for a Church building on July 9, 1887 and it was dedicated on November 17th of that year.  This building was destroyed by fire and replaced with the current building in 1903.

Shaffer To Serve as Redbank Valley Associate

Announced: 04-22-2018

About Michael Shaffer
Growing up, Michael was very involved in his local church, attending Vacation Bible School and youth group. Eventually, he became a teacher at Bible School. After graduating from high school, Michael attended business school and worked managing pizza shops, in sales and as a masonry laborer.

Mike married and started his family at age 19. There were times in his life where he drifted away from the church. Following a divorce, he found his way back to church and credits his wife Amy for helping him to see his true calling in life – to share the love of Christ with others. He and Amy are the parents of eight children.

Mike has served as pastor to the Mount Nebo UMC and the Hickory Square UMC.  He feels blessed to be able to be a shepherd in Jesus’ name, sharing his own encounters with grace with those he serves.
About Redbank Valley Ministry
Growing up, Michael was very involved in his local church; attending Vacation Bible School and youth group. Eventually, he became a teacher at Bible School. After graduating from high school, Michael attended business school and worked managing pizza shops, in sales and as a masonry laborer. Michael married and began building his family at age 19. There were times in his life where he drifted away from the church. Following a divorce, he found his way back to church and credits his wife, Amy for helping him to see his true calling in life – to share the love of Christ with others. He and Amy are the parents of eight children. Michael has served as pastor to the Mount Nebo UMC and the Hickory Square UMC.  He feels blessed to be able to be a shepherd in Jesus’ name, sharing his own encounters with grace with those he serves.
 
The Redbank Valley United Methodist Ministry is celebrating its 10th anniversary as a cooperative ministry. It is comprised of seven churches (New Bethlehem: First, Fairmount City, Leasure Run, Putneyville, Oak Ridge, Hawthorn and Oak Ridge) all located in the New Bethlehem area in Clarion and Armstrong counties. While each church has ministry of its own, they celebrate what each one brings to the combined ministry. Outreach to the local community and beyond is at the heart of what they do best. The churches host monthly dollar dinners, serve at soup kitchens in Pittsburgh on a regular basis, collect items for UMCOR, volunteer at the Mission Barn and Mission Central, support the local food pantry and help those in the community who need assistance. Additionally, churches have supported mission trips to New York City and Kentucky, sponsor Vacation Bible School for the community and currently have three Bible Studies.
 

Gross to serve Speers/Dunlevy/Charleroi First Charge

Announced: 04-08-2018

About Beverly Ann Gross
Born in McKeesport the youngest of four girls, as a child Beverly attended and was confirmed at First United Methodist Church, McKeesport. Upon graduating high school Beverly earned an Associates Degree in Liberal Arts from the Community College of Allegheny County.  For the next several years, she was an active member of a Lay Witness Team in WPA and traveled throughout the Eastern United States sharing her faith, bearing witness to what God had done and was doing in and through her life.

Beverly returned to school and received a degree in Library Science and a teaching degree from Clarion State University.  She also married her husband Jim.  Together they served the Lord teaching Sunday school, VBS, helping with youth and family life groups and leading Bible studies. Relocating to the Munhall area, Beverly and Jim became active members of Homestead Park UMC where she worked as the church’s parish visitor and a teacher in the church’s preschool.  Beverly would later become the assistant director of Walnut Grove Christian School and Daycare. As part of Beverly’s continuing response to God’s call, she later worked as a teacher of children with autism at PLEA and Pressley Ridge School and as the youth director of Baldwin Community UMC. 
 
When God called Beverly to ordained ministry in The United Methodist Church, she enrolled in Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and graduated in May 2002 with a Master of Divinity degree.  While in seminary, Beverly served at Walton and Stanton Heights UM churches and as chaplain of Goodwill Industries.  After ordination as an Elder in 2005, she served as pastor at Rosedale, Valencia, Claysville, Albright, St. Paul and Pleasant Unity UM churches, until retiring from active ministry in June 2017. In retirement, Bev has served as the interim pastor at Fells UMC in Belle Vernon.
 
Beverly serves on the Conference Board of Discipleship and has served for the past 15 years as dean of Discovery Camp for mentally challenged adults at Jumonville.  Beverly also teaches at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. She is the recipient of the 2002 John W. Meister Award for achieved excellence of leadership in pastoral ministry and has been certified as a religious medal instructor for Boy Scouts of America.
 
Beverly and Jim, a retired CPA, have three children: Daughter Kathy and her husband John have two children  and live in Elizabeth; daughter Wendy and husband Matt have two girls and a boy and live in Ohio; son Gavin and his wife Heather have two children and live in Monessen.
 
Beverly finds joy in every aspect of ministry, both in the local church and in the community. She serves God with a willing, committed and loving spirit and is excited about the opportunity to continue to serve the local church.
 
About Speers, Dunleavy/Charleroi:First Charge
Speers, Dunlevy and Charleroi First UM churches, while in Monongahela River communities that differ in size and description, hold in common their desire to “make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world, shining the light of Jesus, and sharing Jesus’ love with everyone they meet wherever they meet them and bringing others to know Jesus as their Savior.” The churches are actively engaged in community-based ministries to persons from Nigeria, unchurched children and youth, persons struggling with addiction and providing food to those in need.  All three churches seek to open their doors and their heart in mission and ministry, making the love of Jesus known to all.  Committed to Christian discipleship and spiritual formation, the Charge seeks to disciple people of all ages, modeling what it means to be a disciple of Jesus by living lives marked with compassion, warmth, hospitality, prayer and imagination!  The laity understand the need to do their part in ministry, rather than relying on the pastor to do it all!

Although the congregations are made up mostly of older people, no one has given up, nor do they expect too!  To a person the members of all three churches look forward with hope, anticipation and expectation to what God is going to do and the difference each of the churches will make in the neighborhoods where they are planted and beyond!
 

Hutchins to Serve Oswayo Valley Charge

Announced: 03-25-2018

About Preston Hutchins
Preston Hutchins was born in Ridgway, PA and grew up in the Butler County area. He graduated from Slippery Rock Area High School in 1970. Preston accepted the Lord in 1970, but like so many, followed the world’s path for many years. He served in the National Guard, was on active duty for five years, and retired out of the Army Reserves as a First Sergeant/Master Sergeant in 1997. He was a truck driver for 20 years and held various other jobs.
 
In 2005 God finally got Preston’s attention again by God’s saving grace. Preston later became a lay speaker for the Slippery Rock United Methodist Church, then a lay preacher, but God still called. It was in 2007 he began preparing to become a licensed local pastor. He attended licensing school in 2008 and was appointed to the Glasgow Larger Parish in the Johnstown District where he served as the associate pastor and then senior pastor.
 
Preston met his wife Robin in 2005 and can say that he married his best friend in 2008. They are a blended family and are blessed with eight wonderful children, 26 grandchildren and five great grandchildren that are all truly loved and adored. As Preston and Robin move in the direction God leads them, they share the passion that they want everyone they meet to come to know the saving grace of Jesus Christ and to see them go to heaven.
 
About Oswayo Valley Charge
The Oswayo Valley Charge has the distinction of being the at farthest north east point in our annual conference. The five churches that make up the charge (Ceres, Shinglehouse, Chrystal, Millport, Oswayo) are located in the northeast and northwest corners of McKean and Potter Counties, respectively.
 
These churches help make Christ known among their communities and also proudly pay their connectional apportionments at 100 percent. They also help with other missions and ministries locally, nationally and internationally. In the Shinglehouse Church they provide meeting space for WIC and are the distribution center for the area food bank, which is predominantly staffed with persons from the five-point charge.
 

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.
 

Beverly Spore to Serve in Leechburg

Announced: 03-18-2018

About Beverly A. Spore
Rev. Beverly A. Spore was born and raised in Somerset County, PA, and grew up in a small United Methodist church on a four-point charge.  She married her high-school sweetheart and joined the Roman Catholic Church. Ten years and two children later, she got divorced and moved to Johnstown, PA. There she attended the University of Pittsburgh, earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in biology, and worked in environmental and occupational health and safety for a Department of Defense contractor. During this time, Rev. Spore returned to the United Methodist Church, grew in discipleship, heard and answered a call to ministry.  
 
Rev. Spore graduated in 2008 with a Master of Divinity degree from Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, KY, and was ordained as a full elder in 2012.  She served the Hopeful Heart Trinity Charge in the Erie-Meadville District and Indian Creek (later Yough Parish) Charge in Connellsville District.  
 
Beverly now is married to the Rev. Dr. Andrew P. Spore, also an ordained United Methodist elder. Between them, the couple has six children living in Johnstown, Erie, and Los Angeles, and one grandchild, who lives in Johnstown.  
 
Rev. Spore is an artsy-craftsy type who also enjoys reading, puzzles, games, playing hostess, and watching Survivor. Her gifts for ministry include preaching, teaching, creativity, and organization. She has a passion for helping people grow in their faith in Jesus and maturing in their discipleship. 

Together, the Spores enjoy traveling and have recently purchased property in New Mexico.  
About Leechburg: First UMC
Leechburg First UMC is the most northern church in the Greensburg District.  Its mission is “Growing, Loving and Serving in Christ’s Name.”  The congregation lives out that mission through the various ministries of the church.  They offer two services each Sunday morning and Sunday school for all ages. For adults there are small group studies.

The people of the church are blessed to have the Leechburg Area School District in their  “back yard” and are finding ways to be in ministry to the children in the area.  One of their ministries is the Bible Discovery program, an afterschool program each spring and fall for the elementary students. The congregation works with other churches in the community to provide Vacation Bible School each summer.  There is also a feeding ministry to homeless people that the church participates in every month.  LFUMC also hosts the ministerial food bank.

Nagy to Serve New Charge

Announced: 02-18-2018

About E. Robert Nagy
E Robert Nagy has been appointed to the Scottdale: Trinity and Hickory Square Charge effective July 1, 2018.
 
Bob is a native of Portage PA and a 1970 graduate of Portage Area High. After working in the US government and various financial institutions, he felt the call into ministry in 1999.  Bob and his wife Marie have been married since 1992. Marie attended Indiana Trinity UMC and invited Bob to attend. There Bob heard the Gospel and in 1995 accepted Jesus as his Lord.
 
Bob graduated from MTSO in Delaware, Ohio and has been serving as a Local Pastor since 1999. The charges he has been appointed to include the Marchand Charge in Indiana County, Hastings/Bakerton in Cambria County, Hyndman Grace/Gravel Pit Bethel Charge in Bedford County and his current appointment at Mill Run/Ohiopyle in Fayette County.  Bob and Marie have nine children, two daughters-in-laws and four  exceptionally beautiful grandkids.
 
About Scottdale:Trinity/Hickory Square UMCs

For 135 years, Scottdale: Trinity United Methodist Church has been living up to Acts 4:32.   The people who have believed and received Jesus Christ have become as one with him in heart and soul.  They have been sharing their treasure, Jesus Christ, with the community of Scottdale and areas beyond.  Both clergy and laity have brought forth  rich ministries that have filled the sanctuary with Sunday School, with worship, and with praise that bring laughter and tears to all who enter Trinity’s doors. 

Ministry has reached out beyond these walls through at least seven of the congregation who have received their call to ordained ministry through the encouraging words of teachers and preachers of Trinity.  Many others have become lay leaders of the Church and District.  Our goal at Trinity for the next century is to continue making disciples for Jesus Christ for the building of His kingdom so that future generations can say, “God’s faithful have truly been serving the past and the present to inspire discipleship for the future.”
 

Hickory Square United Methodist Church welcomes Christians and those who seek to understand Christianity. Our aim is to make contact with and encourage others to join us in our life-enhancing Christian journey. Hickory Square United Methodist Church is a friendly Christian community where we welcome others to join us in our worship and service to God. Our emphasis is on learning and understanding the Bible and following the example of Jesus and his followers.

The vision of Hickory Square Church is to make an impact for God by helping people understand the enriching messages of eternal hope given to us by Jesus Christ through His words and deeds. Everyone is welcome, no matter your age, beliefs or background. Come just as you are - we'd love to get to know you better.

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.