About Pastor Linda
I was blessed with Christian parents who brought us up with a strong faith foundation in our local Lutheran church. We lived in central Ohio on a family dairy farm. From an early age, I loved the church and began serving in worship, teaching and evangelism. In adulthood I experienced a "born again," calling back to Christ after neglecting my faith. My whole life changed; 2nd Corinthians 5:17 became my re-birthday; and I've been a passionate Christ follower since. The Lord blessed me in my family life, through a sales career and through active lay leadership. I became a Methodist after visiting Berea United Methodist Church in Berea, Kentucky. I especially appreciated the Wesleyan path of discipleship and holiness that transforms individuals and communities. While leading a reflective prayer group, I experienced God calling me into pastoral ministry. It has been an amazing journey filled with God's love and leading into educational training and mission experience. I have been honored to serve as a local pastor since July 1, 2018. I am committed to our mission to make disciples that transform the world (Mat 28: 19), including mercy missions of caring for the least of these (Mat 25:35-45) and other scriptural commissions that compel us to offer Christ's healing justice and salvation (Luke 4:18-19). I love being a servant leader who shares in building up the church, equipping the saints, and sharing the love of God and neighbors with one another. My vision is that the whole universe is being made new through Christ and his Church, and despite all appearances, it will not fail. My ongoing hope is to make disciples that inspire others to discover their purpose and calling in Christ just as mine was transformed. My journey testifies that when God takes up residence in your life, lives and breathes in you, the dead life of sin is buried and the Living Spirit of God breathes a resurrected life into you (Romans 8:9-11 MSG). All things are possible if it is the will of God in Christ Jesus (Mark 10:27). I hold a graduate degree in Religion (Berea College), studied in the Master of Theology program at Trinity Lutheran Seminary, and completed Master of Divinity at the Methodist Theological School in Ohio. I served a year as a Children's Minister in my Field Education course, and, as a Hospice Chaplain for eight months through Clinical Pastoral Education with Vitas Healthcare, Inc. From 2011—2018 1 preached regularly at the Estates at Carpenter's Retirement Home in Lakeland, Florida. I am ever grateful for the privilege of serving as a pastor in the local church since July of 2018 and am excited about my future appointment. I love studying, teaching, preaching the Word of God to equip disciples to grow and live out their faith in their daily lives. A strong daily devotional life helps me to preach and exemplify a servant leader. I look to emulate John Wesley in working to do all the good I can for as long as I can for the love of God. Currently, I am serving the Warren Willis United Methodist Camp & Conference Center along with my husband, Arnie. During a season when the staff needs extra hands, we have appreciated this opportunity. Previously, I served in an interim pastoral position and am excited to serve in my next pastoral position. My husband, Arnie, and I are committed partners in mission for Christ together. I thank God for his faithful support. We moved to Florida from Ohio fifteen years ago and treasure our ministry experiences. We look forward to the time of traveling to visit our families who live out-of-state. We own a 2 1/2 year old toy poodle, Priscilla. I enjoy reading, walking, biking, and spending time with family and friends.