What I write below is what I submitted to my District Committee of Ordained Ministry in an application for certification as a pastoral candidate in February 2019.
My vocational calling is to that of a pastor through the path of ordained elder in The United Methodist Church. There were four events in my life that have drawn me to a pastoral calling as my vocation. The first was my desire to emulate my childhood pastor. It was through his ministry and at his invitation that I went forward to proclaim Jesus Christ as my Lord and I found a relationship with God. It was because of my newfound connection with God as Father and Jesus Christ as Savior that a desire grew within to help others find the same connection. Since early childhood, the church has been a safe place for me where I could be myself while engaging with others in worship, study, prayer, and sacrament.
In the second stage of my life as a teenager, I learned a deeper understanding of God at a local church. This led to a stronger relationship with him through Jesus Christ and a great hunger to study the Bible. So, the year after High School, I left my parent’s home in Spokane, Washington and graduated from Calvary Chapel Bible School. As I studied Scripture and engaged deeply in worship and prayer, these practices became more meaningful and personally rewarding.
In the third stage of my life, as a young adult, I devoted myself to church service and leadership. In every church I have attended, I have served in many aspects of church ministry, including worship leader, Bible study teacher, choir member, usher, media team, associate pastor and as a licensed local pastor. I have served on many committees and visited several people in hospitals, jails, and advanced care facilities. In each case, pastors have been instrumental in their encouragement, advice and help to grow in ministry to others.
In this current stage of my life, I have a deeper sense of permanent calling to serve as an elder in The United Methodist Church. Because of the encouragement I have had from pastors since my childhood, I am inspired to live my life in service to others through the vocation of a pastor. The most notable of those who have helped me grow as a Christian and as a servant are Philip Horne, formerly of Inglewood United Methodist Church, Randy Brown, former pastor of White House United Methodist Church, Lynn Hill, former District Superintendent of the Cumberland District, and Davis Chappell, senior pastor of Brentwood United Methodist Church.