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New Grace UMC pastor comes home

By DARRELL SMITH - dsmith@newsexaminer.com

It has been a long journey but the new pastor of Grace United Methodist Church finds himself back home and ready to serve not just the congregation but the community.

Tim Davis took to the pulpit at the church, 2836 Indiana Ave., for the first time Sunday. He hopes it will be a long-term relationship.

Davis is a 1985 graduate of Connersville High School. After graduating from Ball State University with a degree in journalism, marrying Kristen and moving to Indianapolis, he worked in the insurance industry.

“When we discerned our call to ministry, we moved to Wilmore, Ky., (Asbury Theological Seminary) and lived there for 11 years,” he said. “After getting out of seminary, I went back into the insurance industry. We loved it so much, it was the perfect place to raise our kids.”

His goal had been to do doctorate work at the seminary but there comes a time to support the family, he said. The family came back to Connersville in 2010, where he worked in the social services field which provided the opportunity to serve the community.

“We took the plunge into full-time ministry,” Davis said. “We were somewhat empty nesters so I took the position of youth minister of Paw Creek Presbyterian in Charlotte, N.C. It was wonderful but we did not account for how much we would miss our children.”

His wife became the culinary arts instructor at the Whitewater Career Center and he took the position leading the JAG (Jobs for American Graduates) program at CHS. In addition to those duties, he served a time as worship leader at Park Place Church of God and at a church in College Corner.

Along with serving as pastor, he plays a few instruments and has have a passion for guitar.

“But once again it was time for me again to move into ministry,” he said. “We had been attending First United Methodist Church and through Pastor Frank Oakman and the district superintendent, this position was open and I got the appointment.”

He will continue at CHS as a part-time assistant in the English Department.

Davis moves into a position that has basically been vacant for some time, although a pastor did come in on Sundays.

“Coming in, there are a lot of administrative things to take care of and at the same time, getting to know the parishioners will be journey of self discovery to find their identity and their gifts as a church,” he explained. “As we discover what that is, then I think we can better figure out what we can offer to the community, our niche to offer to the community.”

The theme of Sunday’s message was God revealing Himself in history, he said. 

The first days on the job have been hectic, especially with the start of school, but there will be an effort to reach out to the community and to those who previously attended Grace, Davis said. They have an invitation to come back.