SIDNEY — Clergy appointments were made during the United Methodist Church’s annual conference.
The Rev. Joshua Wynn, associate pastor at Sidney First United Methodist Church, was appointed senior pastor of Hayes Memorial United Methodist Church in Fremont, Ohio. The Rev. Eileen Hix as Sidney First’s new associate pastor, thus promoting her from the position of children and family pastor.
In The United Methodist Church, clergy appointments are made annually by the bishop, who has the responsibility for setting all the pastoral appointments in the conference. This unique system of assigning clergy dates back to John Wesley.
“I am excited and thankful to have this opportunity to more fully serve the church and community. Encouraging people to form a deeper, more passionate relationship with Jesus is exactly what I feel God is asking of me,” said Hix. “Changing positions will be challenging but I know that God has been moving me into this next chapter of ministry for about four years now. I have been examining what that might mean for my future, with the help of the Rev. Dr. David Chivington and the district superintendent. I think we have found the perfect place for me to follow the calling that God has placed on my life. I am grateful that the church has affirmed me in this new calling.”
Hix and her husband, Chip, have been a part of Sidney First UMC since they were preparing to be married there in 1993. Following their marriage, they joined the church.
“We are so blessed to call this church home. I have been in children’s ministry for 20 years,” said Hix.
She began working part time in children’s ministry, and as the children’s ministry program grew, so did her position. She began serving full time as the Children’s Coordinator (birth to sixth grade) in 2005. In 2008 she became licensed for ministry in the United Methodist Church, becoming the children’s pastor. This allowed her the opportunity to administer the sacraments, preform weddings, funerals and minister more to families in the church and community.
In 2017, Hix completed her Course of Study at United Theological Seminary, becoming an itinerant pastor. “Itinerancy” refers specifically to the commitment by pastors to go and serve wherever their bishops send them.
Hix emphasizes that even though her position at the church has changed, her love for children and families has not.
“Kids are amazing people and I love sharing Jesus with them. They need to know that they are made special, one of a kind, and that they are valuable. Children need to know that they are loved; it has been my blessing to love and serve them. I will continue to love children and families. I am stepping out in faith to do this differently,” she said.
Sidney First is now accepting applications for a part-time director of children’s ministry. Applications and a job description is available on the church’s website (www.sidneyfirst.com) or at the church office.
Sidney First United Methodist Church is located at 230 E. Poplar St. in Sidney. Services are held at 9 a.m. (traditional) and 11 a.m. (contemporary).