L-r: Jim Pryor, Josh and Julie McKeown, Gary VanderVeen, Jason Garwood, John Authenreith, David Dakin, Andrew Atkins.

Pastoral Changes

  • John Brainard was named senior pastor of Richfield Road UB church (Flint, Mich.), effective July 1, 2017. He had been senior pastor of Living Word UB church (Columbus, Ohio) since 2006. Jim Pryor concluded ten years as pastor of Richfield Road in March 2017.
  • Josh McKeown was appointed senior pastor of Faith UB (Port Orange, Fla.), effective August 23, 2017. He had been on staff at First UB church in nearby Holly Hill, Fla. Gary VanderVeen, who had pastored Faith UB since 2006, is now a Church of God pastor in Clare, Mich.
  • Jason Garwood resigned as pastor of Colwood UB church (Caro, Mich.) effective September 13, 2017.
  • John Authenreith has been named senior pastor at Cochranton Community Church (Cochranton, Pa.), effective November 1, 2017. He takes the place of Steve Clulow, who will retire effective October 29, 2017, after 24 years as pastor at Cochranton. Authenreith has been worship pastor at Mainstreet Church (Walbridge, Ohio) since 2006 and was ordained in 2015.

Ordinations
Bishop Todd Fetters ordained nine persons during the closing service of National Conference on July 15. Those persons were Jeff Dice, David Grove, Jason Haupert, Stuart Johns, Matt Kennedy, Gener Lascase, Brent Liechty, and John Shadle. That was previously reported here.

Bishop Fetters has also conducted these ordinations.

  • June 4. David Dakin, associate pastor of Jerusalem Chapel (Churchville, Va.).
  • August 20. Andrew Atkins, senior pastor since 2002 of Monticello UB (Spencerville, Ohio).

Wesley Skiles (right) has been appointed senior pastor of Olive Branch UB church (Lakeville, Ind.) effective January 15, 2017. He holds a provisional ministerial license.

Skiles graduated from Asbury College in 2001, and is currently pursuing a masters degree at Huntington University. He has served in ministry since 2001, including 2011-2014 as associate pastor of youth at Heart O the Lakes UB church (Brooklyn, Mich.). He and his wife, Tracey, have three children.

William Wheeler has been named senior pastor of Mt. Pleasant UB church in Angola, Ind. He had been filling the pulpit since the retirement of the previous pastor, Devon Strine. Wheeler is a 1987 graduate of the former Fort Wayne Bible College, and in 1991 received the Master of Christian Ministry from Huntington University.

Brent Liechty has been appointed senior pastor of Mogul UB church in Shippensburg, Pa., effective August 16, 2016. He has served since 2005 at Pathway UB church in Jackson, Mich.–as associate/youth pastor until 2013, and since then as senior pastor. Prior to that, he served six years at Criders UB church in Greencastle, Pa. Rocky Spear, who had pastored Mongul for nine years, is now senior pastor of Kilpatrick UB church in Woodland, Mich.

Rev. Devon Strine has retired effective July 31, 2016. He was ordained in 1976. Most recently, he has pastored the Mt. Pleasant UB church (Angola, Ind.) since 2012.

Rev. Teddy Fairchild has been appointed to a two-year assignment as interim pastor of Eagle Quest UB church (Columbia City, Ind.), effective July 31, 2016. He is a 2010 graduate of Huntington University, and earned a Masters from Liberty University in 2014. He has served UB churches in Wilshire and Findlay, Ohio. Teddy and Sarah (right) have been married since 2007 and have two children—daughter Julz, a college student, and son Gabriel, who is 5.

Rev. Jeff Lawson has been appointed senior pastor of Hopewell UB church (Auburn, Ind.) effective July 25, 2016. He takes the place of Rev. John Erwin, who recently retired after serving Hopewell for 16 years.

Jeff Lawson is a graduate of Taylor University (1995) and Crown College in Minnesota (2007), and has been an ordained minister since 1995 in the Christian & Missionary Alliance. Since 1999, he has pastored eight churches in five states, with a focus on church revitalization. He cites “turn-around” situations as his preferred ministry role. Jeff and his wife, Cindy (right), have two grown children.

Roxton “Rocky” Spear (right) has been named senior pastor of Kilpatrick UB church (Woodland, Mich.). He takes the place of Darrel Bosworth, the pastor since 2002, who is retiring. Rocky had been pastor of Mongul UB church (Shippensburg, Pa.) since January 2007.

michael-elkinsMichael Elkins (right) has been appointed lead pastor of New Hope Community Church in Bryan, Ohio, effective January 1, 2016. His first Sunday to preach is January 17.

He graduated in 2007 from Baptist Bible College (Springfield, Mo.) with a degree in Pastoral Ministries, and earned a Masters in Human Services (Executive Leadership) in 2015 from Liberty University (Lynchburg, Va.). Since 2009, he has served as associate pastor of Connections Community Church in Schoolcraft, Mich. He and his wife, Michelle, have three daughters ages 2-7.

The previous pastor, Pat Schwenk, left at the end of 2015 to plant a new church in Michigan (with New Hope’s blessing and support).

Ken Thompson has been appointed senior pastor of South Scipio UB church (Harlan, Ind.), effective January 1, 2016. He was ordained as a UB minister in 1993 and previously pastored UB churches in Van Buren, Ind., Huntington, Ind., and Hillsdale, Ohio.