Uniting Methodists Conference
We are excited to announce the next Uniting Methodist Conference in Dallas. At this conference, you will hear diverse, inspiring speakers, have engaging dialogue, and participate in powerful moments of worship.
Bishop Janice Riggle Huie
Bishop Janice Riggle Huie serves in ministry with the Texas Methodist Foundation in the area of Leadership Formation, following twenty years as a bishop of the United Methodist Church. Previously, she served as bishop of the Texas Annual Conference and the Arkansas Conference. A noted speaker and experienced leader, she has preached at numerous annual conferences and seminaries and led retreats for both pastors and laity in the area of leadership and spiritual formation. Bob and Janice enjoy camping, snow skiing, and showing steers with their children and grandchildren.
Bishop Gregory Palmer
Bishop Palmer was assigned as Episcopal Leader of the Ohio West Area in 2012. In 2000, He was elected to the episcopacy in 2000. He served as president of the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry from 2004 to 2008 and president of the Council of Bishops from April 2008 to May 2010. He holds degrees from George Washington University and Duke Divinity School.
Bishop Michael McKee
Bishop Michael McKee is a native of Fort Worth, Texas. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin (1973), a Master of Theology from Perkins School of Theology of Southern Methodist University (1978) and was awarded an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Texas Wesleyan University (2005). In addition to serving as pastor at several churches in the Central Texas Annual Conference, he has held numerous offices including chair of the Board of Ordained Ministry and the Mid-Cities District Committee of Ordained Ministry. In 2012, McKee was elected to the episcopacy by the South Central Jurisdictional Conference and assigned to serve as the resident bishop of the Dallas Area effective September 1, 2012. McKee is immediate past-president of the South Central Jurisdiction College of Bishops. He is president of the Board of the General Council on Finance and Administration of the UMC. He serves on the Boards of Trustees of Southern Methodist University, Texas Methodist Foundation, Southwestern University, and Methodist Health System, Dallas and is chair of the Executive Board of Perkins School of Theology. Mike and Joan (Craig) McKee have been married since 1975 and have two adult children.
Mark Miller believes that everyone is a Child of God and that music can help heal the world. He also adheres to Cornel West’s belief that “Justice is what love looks like in public.” He is Associate Professor of Church Music and Director of Worship at Drew University in Madison, NJ, and is a Lecturer in Sacred Music at Yale University. He is also the Minister of Music of Christ Church (UCC) in Summit, New Jersey. A renowned composer of sacred music, Mark’s hymns and anthems are sung by communities of faith throughout the country and are published by Choristers Guild, Hinshaw, Abingdon Press, Santa Barbara Music Publishing and others. His album “Imagine the People of God” is available on itunes. Mark spends a portion of the year traveling the country, often with his band ‘Subject to Change,’ leading worship and workshops, preaching and presenting concerts focused on creating community and advocating for social justice. Over the past three years he has visited a hundred venues in over twenty states. He has also led choirs and performed in Sweden, South Africa, Austria, Russia, and the Baltic states.
Emanuel Cleaver III
Dr. Emanuel Cleaver III is the dynamic senior pastor of St. James United Methodist Church in Kansas City, Missouri. His expertise is rooted in his experience and the knowledge he acquired while working toward a Master’s of Divinity from the Methodist Theological School in Ohio and his Doctor of Ministry from Saint Paul School of Theology. He is the author of Pastor On Track: Reclaiming Our True Role.
Adam HamiltonAdam Hamilton is well-known throughout the nation as a preacher, writer, and denominational leader. He is the Senior Pastor of the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Kansas City and leads his Conference’s delegation to the General Conference. Participating in this event affirms his conviction that “the vast majority of United Methodists believe that it is possible to have differing views and convictions and remain one church.” He sees the gathering in Dallas as “a chance for Christian conferencing supporting the unity of the church while formally allowing for these different convictions within the life of the church.”
Molly McEntire serves at the Florida Conference of the United Methodist Center as the Missional Trainer and Volunteer Coordinator. She is the daughter of a United Methodist pastor and grew up in the Florida Conference. She is a board member of Global Ministries, serving as the executive secretary, as well as an UMCOR board member and a delegate to the World Methodist Council (2016-2021). Molly led the Florida Conference delegation to 2016 General Conference and will lead the delegation to the 2019 called General Conference. She currently serves as the Chairperson of Committee on Episcopacy, Florida Annual Conference, is a Member of Committee on Episcopacy (S.E. Jurisdiction), and is a Young Adult Division Member of the Board of Lay Ministry in the Florida Conference. She has previously served as a board member of the UM Global AIDS Fund and a member of the General Board of Discipleship, Young Adult Division. Molly helped develop and served on the board for the Young Adult Missions Movement of the Florida Conference. Molly has traveled extensively and worked with empowerment programs in Kenya and other parts of the world.
Stan CopelandStan Copeland has served as the Senior Pastor of Lovers Lane United Methodist Church in Dallas since his appointment from the Texas Conference to the North Texas Conference in 1998. Dr. Copeland wrote a book, Lord He Went, about his mentor, Dr. William H. Hinson. His newest book, Together: United Methodists of the Temple, Tabernacle and Table, is the story of Lovers Lane as an example of what he believes all churches have in them, a life-changing story and a unique vision of making disciples that can change the planet. Stan and his wife Tammy have two married children, Emily (and JB) Bryant, Zach (and Emily) Copeland, and a new granddaughter, Claire Marie, now living in the Dallas area.
The Rev. Edgar Bazan is an Elder in the North Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. He grew up in Mexico and moved to Dallas, Texas in 2004 with his wife Dr. Evelyn Garza to serve in The United Methodist Church as a pastor. Edgar is a Master of Divinity graduate from Perkins School of Theology S.M.U. and is currently working on a Doctorate at Asbury Theological Seminary researching Church Revitalization and Turnaround Churches. Most of his ministry has been focusing on new church starts in transitioning urban communities and working with non-profits. Edgar’s goal in life is to contribute to the wellness of the neighbor.
Ginger E. Gaines-Cirelli is a life-long United Methodist who is passionate about sharing the good news of God’s liberating love in Jesus Christ. For over 20 years as a pastor-theologian, her ministry has encouraged spiritual growth and engaged discipleship—emphasizing radical hospitality, shared ministry, spiritual practices, and solidarity with the poor and oppressed. With this focus, Ginger brings depth, health, and growth to every community she has served. In 2014, Ginger became the first woman to serve as Senior Pastor of Foundry.
A graduate of Yale University Divinity School, Pastor Gaines-Cirelli is a featured teacher and speaker at local, district, conference, jurisdictional, and international connectional events. She is the author of Sacred Resistance, a practical guide to Christian witness and dissent in troubled times and contributed and served on the editorial board for The CEB Women's Bible.
Juan Carlos Huertas
Juan Carlos Huertas is the Lead Pastor at Grace Community, a United Methodist congregation in Shreveport, Louisiana. A native of Puerto Rico, he is a husband, father, and spiritual director who loves writing about discipleship as empowerment to transform our neighborhoods, cities, and world.
Rev. Melissa Maher is an ordained elder in the Texas Annual Conference and graduate of Asbury Theological Seminary currently serving as Lead Pastor of Mercy Street, a church within Chapelwood United Methodist in Houston. Having entered pastoral ministry after a career in corporate lending, Melissa’s passion is to bridge the ministry of the church with the opportunities and needs of the city. She has found a spiritual home among contemplative spirituality and practices, missional outreach and a Wesleyan expression of grace.
Christian WashingtonChristian has been in ministry for nearly 17 years: First as a management consultant with Leadership Network and Wildworks, then leading his own firm REAL Coaching, Inc. He has been a pastor for nearly 5 years, having launched UR Houston. He is married to his wife of 16 years Johanne Swain Washington (from South Pasadena, CA). They enjoy world travel, vegan cuisine, theater, and movies. He is a lifelong Lakers and Dodgers fan whose marriage works because of the eternal blessing of the DVR.
Rachel Griffin Baughman
Rachel Griffin Baughman is the senior pastor of Oak Lawn UMC in Dallas, TX. Before coming to Oak Lawn, she served for 10 years at University Park UMC. She is passionate about discipleship, social justice, and hospitality for those on the margins. A graduate of Texas Wesleyan University and Drew Theological Seminary, Rachel edited the CEB Women’s Study Bible and has contributed to a long list of curricula for Sparkhouse Press (including the resources we use at OLUMC!). Rachel is a certified Birkman coach who loves strengthening church staffs and lay leadership to improve their mutual understanding and ability to work well with each other. Her husband, Rev. Mike Baughman, is also a United Methodist minister. They live in the Dallas area with their four children, Griffin 17, Bekah 15, Sylvia 12, and Thomas 9.
Rev. Mike Baughman is the Community Curator and founding pastor for Union. The editor for Flipping Church (2016), Mike is eager to encounter and support those on the innovative edge of church, non-profit and civic engagement. He has served as author, editor and developer for a long list of curricula through Sparkhouse Press and Cokesbury. Mike learned a lot about basketball while attending Duke University and then earned a couple of pretentious diplomas from Princeton Theological Seminary (they’re both in Latin and hang in his garage). A third generation Methodist minister and church planter, Mike married a sixth generation Methodist minister, Rachel.
Uiyeon Kim is an associate pastor at Myers Park UMC in Charlotte, North Carolina (Western North Carolina Conference). He emigrated from Seoul, South Korea, to Lubbock, Texas, with his family in 1991 and is married with two beautiful children. He is an elder in full connection.
Lonnie Chafin is a three time general conference delegate from the Northern Illinois Conference where he has been Conference Treasurer since 1999. He's Treasurer of the North Central Jurisdiction and Treasurer and Chair of the Finance Committee of the General Board of Church and Society. He was a Missionary for the General Board of Global Ministries from 1990 to 1999 serving in Budapest Hungary and at Frankford Group Ministry in Philadelphia, where he was a community organizer and Executive Director of a neighborhood based community development corporation. As a Chicago Cubs fan, Lonnie has learned the rewards of a patient faith.