published Saturday, June 18th, 2011

United Methodist Holston Conference announces changes

United Methodist Holston Conference leaders approved new pastoral assignments at their annual meeting at Lake Junaluska, N.C. earlier this week.

The Chattanooga District is a part of the Holston Conference.

IN TENNESSEE

The Rev. Clair Sauer will be pastor of the Hixson-area Grace and Fairview congregations. She was previously pastor of Grace, while Fairview was served by the Rev. Rhonda Hobbs, formerly of Burks UMC.

The Rev. Charlie Harrison will become senior pastor and the Rev. Natalie Smart associate pastor at Tyner UMC. They replace Dr. Robert Haskins, who retired, and the Rev. Glenn Moseley, respectively.

Harrison comes to the church from First UMC in Sevierville, Tenn., where he served since 2006. This is his first appointment in the Chattanooga District, but he had previously served in various assignments in the Cleveland (Tenn.) District.

Smart arrives from Simpson UMC, which she served since 2007. She also has been an associate pastor at Red Bank UMC and Signal Crest on Signal Mountain.

Also appointed at the Holston Conference meeting were the Rev. Michael Johnson at Holly Avenue UMC in South Pittsburg and the Rev. Ken Bailey, a retired pastor, at St. Marks in North Chattanooga.

Johnson comes to Holly Avenue from the Decatur and Concord churches in Meigs County, which he pastored since 2008. He also has been associate pastor at St. Elmo UMC and associate pastor at Hixson UMC.

Bailey was previously appointed to Wauhatchie and Wildwood in the Chattanooga District and Calhoun and Spring Creek in the Cleveland District.

The Bethlehem-Wiley, Eastdale Village, Hurst, Randolph, Stanley and Wells Chapel churches will be combined into the Mount Moriah Parish, according to outgoing district superintendent Dr. Fred Dearing.

The combined ministry team for the six churches will include the Rev. Elston McLain, pastor at Stanley; the Rev. Edward Ellis, pastor of Bethlehem-Wiley; the Rev. Stanley Williams, pastor at Eastdale Village; and the Rev. Barbara Doyle.

IN GEORGIA

Three North Georgia UMC churches, Flintstone, Fort Oglethorpe and Simpson, will be combined into the Holston Gap Parish. The Rev. Janice Keebler, who was pastor of the Flintstone and Fort Oglethorpe churches, now will pastor all three.

Five Dade County, Ga., UMC churches also will be combined for ministry. The Rising Fawn and Sand Mountain congregations will be served by the Rev. Wayne Cook, who was previously pastor of the Morganville, Slygo Valley and Sand Mountain churches. Meanwhile, the Morganville, Slygo Valley and Wildwood congregations will be staffed by lay ministers.

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