Rev. Jorge Acevedo is the Lead Pastor at Grace Church, a multi-site, United Methodist congregation in Southwest Florida with five campuses (Cape Coral, Fort Myers Shores, Fort Myers Central, Fort Myers Trinity and Sarasota in Southwest Florida). Grace Church is recognized as having one of the largest and most effective recovery ministries in America.
Rev. Omar Al-Rikabi is the Senior Pastor of Heath United Methodist Church in Heath, Texas. When not telling stories, Omar likes to watch movies with his wife Jennifer, read books with his three daughters, and work in the kitchen cooking and grilling for family and friends. You can follow him on Twitter @omarrikabi.
Michelle Bauer serves as the Pastor of Spiritual Formation and a Spiritual Director at Vineyard Church in Augusta, GA. She has a Master of Arts in Spiritual Formation and Leadership from Spring Arbor University and has completed the Sustainable Faith School of Spiritual Direction’s two year training program. Michelle is married to her husband Chris and is the mom of three boys – August, Luke, and Sam.
Rev. Edgar Bazan grew up in Mexico and moved to Dallas in 2004 with his wife, Dr. Evelyn Garza, to serve in the United Methodist Church. He is associate pastor of Tyler Street UMC in Dallas. Most of his ministry has been focused on new church starts in transitioning urban communities. Currently he is working towards his DMin at Asbury Theological Seminary. Edgar and Evelyn have two children, Emiliano and Santiago.
Rev. Yvette Blair Lavallais is a leader at The Gathering, which exists to create worship experiences that address social justice issues through womanist preaching in Dallas, Texas. She is a 2017 academic fellow of Princeton Theological Seminary’s Black Theology and Leadership Institute. She is a graduate of Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University and holds a BA in Journalism. Previously, she worked in corporate communications, the non-profit sector, and public relations at the Smithsonian Institution. She is author of Being Ruth: Pressing Through Life’s Struggles with Fearless Faith.
Rev. Cole Bodkin is the Seventh Grade Old Testament teacher at Briarcrest Christian School in Memphis, Tennessee. Former Editorial Assistant at Wesleyan Accent and former Director of Young Adult Ministries at Collierville UMC, Rev. Bodkin holds an MDiv from Asbury Theological Seminary. He and his wife Lindsay have two daughters.
Carrie Carter is a Nazarene pastor’s wife and mom of two teenage boys. She enjoys normal things like writing, her pets, wind whistling in the pines and spending time with friends and family. She is amused by unexpected things like self-written obituaries and clothes-wearing taxidermy.
Bishop Ken Carter was elected in 2012 to the episcopacy by the Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference of the United Methodist Church. He has served on the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry, the Committee on Faith and Order, the Ministry Study Commission, the University Senate, and the National Plan for Hispanic/Latino Ministry. Bishop Carter is the author of Pray For Me: The Power in Praying For Others (Upper Room 2012).
Rev. Bryan Collier is the Founding and Lead Pastor of The Orchard. He is a graduate of Mississippi State University and Asbury Theological Seminary. He hails from Etta, Mississippi and has been married to Wendy for over fifteen years. He is Olivia and Houston’s Dad. Bryan likes to read, ride bikes and attend Mississippi State sporting events.
Rev. David Drury is the Chief of Staff to the General Superintendent of The Wesleyan Church. His written works include Transforming Presence, SoulShift, and The Fruitful Life. He served Midwest congregations as a church planter, solo pastor, and staff pastor in urban, suburban, and rural settings. He has degrees from Indiana Wesleyan University, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and Kingswood University.
Rev. JR Forasteros is Lead Pastor of Catalyst Community Church in Rowlett, Texas, a Church of the Nazarene congregation. He is author of Empathy for the Devil, a book from InterVarsity Press. Check out his blogging and podcasts at www.jrforasteros.com.
Rev. Tom Fuerst is Lead Pastor at Bluff City Church in Memphis, TN. He is author of Underdogs and Outcasts: A Bible Study on the Untold Stories of Advent. Tom received a Master of Arts from the University of Missouri and a Master of Divinity from Asbury Theological Seminary. A teacher and a pastor, Tom has a passion for helping others understand the Bible. Tom is a family man who loves Jesus, his wife, and their four children.
Elizabeth Glass Turner is Managing Editor of Wesleyan Accent. She writes on topics ranging from funerals to the problem of evil to cultural analysis and has contributed to several books. Former Associate Director for Community and Creative Development at World Methodist Evangelism, she is a passionate preacher and speaker with pastoral experience and has an M.A. in Theological Studies from Asbury Theological Seminary. She and her husband live in the Midwest with their three children.
Dr. Matt Hook is Senior Pastor of Dexter United Methodist Church in Dexter, Michigan. He holds a Doctorate of Ministry from Asbury Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Leigh, have four children. He is an active volunteer with World Methodist Evangelism.
Dr. Justus Hunter is assistant professor of church history at United Theological Seminary in Dayton, OH. He is a historical theologian. His research and teaching interests are in the areas of medieval theology, scholasticism, doctrine of God, Christology, basic Christian doctrine, and Methodist theology. Justus writes for both the church and academy. He serves on the editorial board and as book review editor of the Wesleyan Theological Journal. He and his wife, Ellen, live in Dayton, OH with their three children.
Rev. Tara Beth Leach is the Senior Pastor of Pasadena First Church of the Nazarene (“PazNaz”) in California. She has ministered in congregations in Upstate New York and Illinois. She holds a Master of Divinity degree from Northern Theological Seminary where she also worked as a teaching assistant. She is the author of Emboldened: A Vision for Empowering Women in Ministry.
Rev. Matt LeRoy is the Teaching Pastor at Love Chapel Hill, a church plant of The Wesleyan Church in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. He is the author of The Great Reversal: The Life and Death and Life of Jesus, published by Seedbed. Follow him on Twitter at @mattleroy.
Rev. Shalom Liddick is a church planter in The Wesleyan Church with her husband, Michael. They currently live in Arizona with their children. Shalom writes regularly at www.shalomliddick.com.
Rev. Michelle Manuel is Loft Associate Pastor at The Woodlands United Methodist Church in The Woodlands, Texas. She and her husband have a son.
Rev. Dr. Otis T. McMillan is General Secretary of the Department of Church Growth and Development of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church. Rev. Dr. McMillan served as a pastor in the AME Zion Church for nearly 30 years. He has been regularly involved with World Methodist Evangelism and is a gifted vocalist. He and his wife of 50 years, Barbara Jean Adams McMillan, local preacher in her own right, are the proud parents of five adult children and 14 grandchildren.
Rev. Carolyn Moore is an ordained Elder in the United Methodist Church. In June 2003, she was appointed home again to the Augusta, Georgia area, where she and her family were given the joy of birthing Mosaic United Methodist Church. Mosaic focuses on reaching people in the margins.
Dr. Joy Moore is Associate Professor of Homiletics and Christian Ministry at Wesley Seminary. Dr. Moore was the founding associate dean of the William E. Pannell Center for African American Church Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary. She became a John Wesley Fellow in 2001, and is a member of the National Association of United Methodist Evangelists, the Wesleyan Theology Society, the Academy of Homiletics, the Society for Biblical Literature, and is president of the Christian Theological Research Fellowship of the American Academy of Religion.
Rev. Elizabeth Moyer is pursuing a Master of Divinity at Wesley Seminary at Indiana Wesleyan University. She has a heart for teaching the faith, rural communities and reclaiming the missional identity of the Church. She currently serves in the NC West District. Elizabeth is married to Adam, and they reside in Charlotte, NC. She is a contributor to www.annesleywriters.com.
Dr. Kevin Murriel is Senior Pastor of Cascade UMC in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. Murriel received his Master of Divinity degree from Candler School of Theology and his Doctor of Ministry degree from Duke University, named by the Dean and doctoral committee as the Degree Marshal of the 2014 doctoral cohort–the youngest person and first African American in the program’s history to receive such a designation. He is the author of Breaking the Color Barrier: A Vision for Church Growth through Racial Reconciliation. He and his wife Dr. Ashleigh Murriel have a daughter, Scarlett Grace.
Dr. Suzanne Nicholson is Professor of Biblical Studies at Malone University. She has a PhD from the University of Durham and an MDiv from Asbury Theological Seminary. She teaches on the New Testament and has published academically on the writings of Paul and on Luke-Acts, among other topics. She and her husband Lee, a youth pastor, have two children.
Rev. Faith Parry is Connection Pastor at Shalimar UMC in Shalimar, Florida. She is a provisional Elder in the United Methodist Church. She and her husband AJ have a daughter.
Dr. Aaron Perry is Assistant Professor of Christian Ministry and Pastoral Care at Wesley Seminary at Indiana Wesleyan University. He and his wife, Heather, have three children. Aaron is the co-editor of Leadership in the Wesleyan Way and wrote Putting the Plot Back in Preaching. He co-authored He Ascended into Heaven with Tim Perry and edited Developing Ears to Hear. Follow him on Twitter @aaronhmperry.
Rev. James Petticrew is ordained in the Church of the Nazarene. He served as part of the start team for Mosaic Edinburgh, a community of radical Christ followers in Scotland’s capital city. His other great love apart from his wife and kids is The Beast, his Aprilia Falco 1000cc V-Twin motorbike. When it comes to sport, he supports his local rugby team Boroughmuir and verges on the fanatical or embarrassing in his support for Scotland.
Dr. Kimberly Reisman is Executive Director of World Methodist Evangelism, an organization founded by the World Methodist Council, a global connection of Wesleyan Methodist denominations from around the world. Dr. Reisman is an ordained Elder in the United Methodist Church. She holds a PhD from the University of Durham and an MDiv from Yale Divinity School. She has written several books, including Embrace faith-sharing curriculum. She is a frequent traveler and speaker.
Rev. Jeff Rudy is the Senior Pastor of Ellendale United Methodist Church in Ellendale, TN. He studied Wesleyan theology at the University of Manchester. He and his wife Carrie have two children.
Rev. Heather Semple is the Lead Pastor of Red Cedar Church, a congregation in The Wesleyan Church. Heather and her husband, Jeff, moved to Wisconsin in 2007. They have been married for 15 years and together have three children. Follow Heather on Twitter at @hksemple.
Dr. Matt Sigler is Assistant Professor of Wesleyan Studies at Seattle Pacific University. He holds a PhD in liturgical studies from Boston University, where his work focused on Methodist identity and liturgical praxis. Prior to becoming a professor, he served for 12 years as a music minister in the church, and has written on contemporary worship as well as lyrical theology. He is particularly interested in how the faith practices of communities of the past can serve as resources for renewal in the church today.
Dr. Dave Smith is Professor of New Testament at Indiana Wesleyan University. Previously he served as Academic Dean at Wesley Seminary. He served for five years as the VP for Academic Affairs at Kingswood University (2010-2015). Previous to that position, he was Associate Dean of the School of Theology and Ministry and Professor of Biblical Studies at IWU (2000-2010). He is a sought-after speaker and Bible teacher.
Rev. Kelcy Steele is Senior Pastor of Varick Memorial AME Zion Church in New Haven, Connecticut. He holds an M.Div. from United Theological Seminary and is a sought-after preacher and speaker. He edited The Sound of Revival: Seven Powerful Proclamations. Rev. Steele is active with World Methodist Evangelism and is a member of Order of the Flame.
Rev. Andy Stoddard is Lead Pastor at St. Matthew’s United Methodist Church in Madison, MS. He is a member of the 2015 class of World Methodist Evangelism’s Order of the Flame. He is the husband of Holly, the father of Sarah and Thomas, and the son of Connie and Maxine.
Dr. Andrew C. Thompson serves as the senior pastor of First United Methodist Church in Springdale, Arkansas. Previously he taught for four years on the faculty of Memphis Theological Seminary in Memphis, Tennessee. He earned a Doctor of Theology degree from Duke University, where he studied the thought of John Wesley and the history of the early Methodist movement. Andrew is the author of The Means of Grace (Seedbed 2015).
Bishop Debra Wallace Padgett was elected a Bishop of the United Methodist Church at the 2012 Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference. Prior to being elected Bishop she was Lead Pastor of St. Luke’s United Methodist Church in Lexington, Kentucky. Her previous service to the church includes six years as District Superintendent of the Prestonsburg District.Additionally, she has served in a variety of roles in the Kentucky Annual Conference as well as Jurisdictional and General Conference levels.
Dr. Jerry Walls is Professor of Philosophy and Scholar-in-Residence at Houston Baptist University. He is an ordained Elder in the United Methodist Church and holds a PhD in philosophy from the University of Notre Dame, an STM from Yale Divinity School, an MDiv from Princeton Seminary, and a BA from Houghton College. He is a prolific author whose works include Why I’m Not a Calvinist, co-authored with Dr. Joseph Dongell, as well as Hell: The Logic of Damnation; Heaven: The Logic of Eternal Joy; and Purgatory: The Logic of Total Transformation.
Jean Watson is an internationally acclaimed singer/songwriter and classically trained violinist. She has recorded seven albums to date including her latest, Steady My Gaze, featuring Grammy-nominated producer Billy Smiley, guitar virtuoso Phil Keaggy, and John Ellis of Tree63. She is also a sought-after speaker, spending time in churches, coffeehouses, homeless shelters, and prisons.Watson can be heard online on UCB Radio Ireland where she hosts a daily inspirational radio show.
Dr. Brian Yeich is Assistant Provost and Affiliate Professor of Methodist and Wesley Theology at Asbury Theological Seminary. He is an ordained Elder of The United Methodist Church and serves as a Missioner for the Inspire Movement, a missional discipleship network based in the United Kingdom. His areas of study include evangelism theology and practice and missional discipleship.
Rev. Brenda Young was ordained in the Free Methodist Church. She has been leading the vision for Cornerstone Church since 1996 and is the director of Clear Blue Global Water Project. She is a graduate of Ohio Christian University and Asbury Theological Seminary. She is a frequent speaker at both national and international conferences and seminars.
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