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. He is the author of The Advent Mission.
Rev. Karen Bates operates Alabaster Box Ministry Services and is a conference speaker who speaks on a variety of issues, including diversity, leadership and communication. She is an assistant pastor at a church in Maryland and can be reached at karenl (dot) bates (at) gmail (dot) com.
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.
Dr. Edgar Bazan is Senior Pastor of Casa Linda Church in Dallas, Texas. He holds a Doctorate of Ministry from Asbury Theological Seminary. Most of his ministry has been focused on new church starts in transitioning urban communities. He grew up in Mexico and moved to Dallas in 2004 with his wife, Dr. Evelyn Garza, to serve in the United Methodist Church. 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 ministry spouse to a Nazarene pastor. She is a mom to two 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.
Rev. David Drury is the Chief of Staff to the General Superintendent of The Wesleyan Church. His written works include Transforming Presence and Sheep to Shepherd. He served Midwest congregations as a church planter, solo pastor, and staff pastor in differing settings. He has degrees from Indiana Wesleyan University, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and Kingswood University.
Dr. Maxie Dunnam is Founding Editor of Wesleyan Accent and retired President of Asbury Theological Seminary. He was world editor of The Upper Room daily devotional guide from 1975-1982 and was Senior Pastor of the 6,000-member Christ United Methodist Church in Memphis for 12 years. In 1963, he was one of four writers and 28 Mississippi Methodist minister signers of the Born of Conviction statement denouncing racial discrimination and segregation, most of whom subsequently were forced to leave Mississippi and pursue ministry elsewhere. He is also author of over 30 books.
Rev. Aaron Duvall is husband to Chera, father to Harper, and a follower of Jesus. He is the Teaching Pastor at Victory Highway Wesleyan Church in Painted Post, New York. He graduated from Indiana Wesleyan University, where he majored in Philosophy. He went on to earn an MA in Entrepreneurial Ministry Leadership from Tabor College.
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. With an M.A. in Theological Studies, she writes on wide-ranging topics and enjoys helping writers find their own voice. Her essays have appeared in books like The Philosophy of Sherlock Holmes and The Sound of Revival. Former Associate Director for Community/Creative Development at World Methodist Evangelism, she is a passionate preacher and an analytical teacher with pastoral experience in local church and campus ministry settings. She and her husband live in the American Midwest with their three children.
Dr. Tammie Grimm is Assistant Professor of Congregational Formation at Wesley Seminary in Marion, Indiana. She has a PhD from the University of Manchester, where her thesis was, “Holy and Holistic Transformation: The Practice of Wesleyan Discipleship and Transformative Learning Theory.” She is an ordained Deacon in The United Methodist Church.
Dr. Priscilla Hammond is Assistant Professor of management and leadership at Southern Wesleyan University. She is an ordained minister in The Wesleyan Church and is a missional church coach. Hammond is the treasurer of Wesleyan Holiness Women Clergy, member of the District Board of Ministerial Development for the South Coastal District of The Wesleyan Church, and is the president of Southern Wesleyan University’s National Alumni Association Board of Directors.
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 grown 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 with research and teaching interests are in the areas of medieval theology, scholasticism, Christology, basic Christian doctrine, and Methodist theology. Justus writes for both the church and academy and serves on the editorial board of the Wesleyan Theological Journal. He and his wife, Ellen, live in Dayton, OH with their three children.
Dr. Jackson Lashier is Associate Professor of Religion and Chair of the Social Science Division at Southwestern College. He has a Ph.D. from Marquette University. He has a passion for connecting the historic doctrines of the church to everyday lives of Christians and is the author of “Irenaeus on the Trinity” (Brill, 2014).
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 a pastor in the United Methodist Church. She and her husband reside in Texas and have a son.
Rev. Dr. Otis T. McMillan is General Secretary of the Department of Church Growth and Development of the AME 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 at Luther 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 North Carolina West District of The Wesleyan Church. Elizabeth is married to Adam, and they reside in Charlotte, NC.
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 New Testament at Asbury University. She has a PhD from the University of Durham. 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. From Scotland, he is Senior Pastor of Westlake Church Nyon in Switzerland. 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 the 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, connecting 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 a staff minister at 12 Stone Church in Atlanta, Georgia. Before that role she was Lead Pastor of Red Cedar Church, a congregation in The Wesleyan Church. Heather and her husband, Jeff, have been married for over 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. 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 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.
Bishop Debra Wallace Padgett was elected a Bishop of the United Methodist Church at the 2012 Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference. Prior to this 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. 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, and an MDiv from Princeton Seminary. He is a prolific author whose works include Why I’m Not a Calvinist, co-authored with Dr. Joseph Dongell, as well as Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory: Rethinking the Things That Matter Most.
Jean Watson is an international singer/songwriter and classically trained violinist. She has recorded multiple albums including Steady My Gaze, featuring Grammy-nominated producer Billy Smiley and guitar virtuoso Phil Keaggy. She is a sought-after speaker, spending time in churches, coffeehouses, homeless shelters, and prisons. She is the author of Everything Can Change in Forty Days. She can be heard online on UCB Radio Ireland where she hosts an inspirational radio show.
Dr. Kevin Watson is Assistant Professor of Wesleyan and Methodist Studies at Candler School of Theology at Emory University. Prior to joining the Candler faculty, Watson taught at Seattle Pacific University and Perkins School of Theology. His research interests focus on Christian formation and discipleship from a Wesleyan perspective. In addition to writing articles for scholarly and popular publications, Watson is the author of three books, including Pursuing Social Holiness: The Band Meeting in Wesley’s Thought and Popular Methodist Practice.
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.
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