People of Faith: July 3, 2015

Rachel Nicklas

Rachel Nicklas

Nicklas joins Cokesbury as community resource consultant

Cokesbury.com, the retail arm of United Methodist Publishing House, has named Rachel Nicklas as its community resource consultant for the Arkansas area.

Originally from Star City, Nicklas grew up as an active member of the First United Methodist Church there. She then attended Arkansas State University, where she connected with the Wesley Foundation campus ministry. She went on to serve in youth ministry at several churches across the state over the last 12 years, and is a current board member and camp director with Ozark Mission Project.

She and her husband, Justin, live in Hot Springs where they are raising three boys, nine-year-old Braden, and twin two-year-olds Carter and Cason. They all are very active members of First UMC Hot Springs.

Nicklas is available to assist with any curriculum or supply needs by phone at 501-553-8614; by email at rnicklas@cokesbury.com; or through Facebook at www.facebook.com/CokesburyArkansas. Local churches also may schedule a personal visit from her to review relevant resources to support their ministries.

Board of Higher Education and Ministry names scholarship recipients

The Arkansas Conference Board of Higher Education and Ministry has announced its scholarship recipients for the fall 2015 semester.

The three $500 Conference Merit Award scholarships are funded by 50 percent of the annual United Methodist Student Day offering, and are for students attending a United Methodist college or university.

Conference Merit Award Scholarship recipients are:

  • Erin Farrah, who will be a freshman at Drew University in New Jersey this fall. She is an active member of Central UMC Fayetteville;
  • Tom Mullins, a student pastor in Kansas and a student at St. Paul School of Theology in the Kansas City area;
  • Michael McMurray, a junior at Hendrix College. He is a candidate for ministry, a member of First UMC Little Rock and actively involved in First UMC Conway.

The Hood Scholarship is $1,000 award presented to a person preparing for ministry. This year’s scholarship is awarded to Andrea Cummings, who will be attending Candler School of Theology. A Philander Smith College graduate, she has been actively involved as a leader on campus and at Wesley Chapel UMC Little Rock.

United Methodist Foundation of Arkansas elects new board members

Rev. J. Wayne Clark

J. Wayne Clark

The United Methodist Foundation of Arkansas (UMFA) announced in a June 12 news release that the Rev. J. Wayne Clark of Conway, Daryl Coker of Little Rock, the Honorable Beth Deere of Little Rock, the Rev. Dr. John Robbins of Fayetteville and Bill Wisener of Monticello have been elected to the UMFA board of directors.

The Foundation builds endowments to enhance United Methodist ministries in the Arkansas Conference and manages endowment funds for local churches and United Methodist institutions.

Daryl Coker

Daryl Coker

“We are pleased to welcome Wayne, John and Bill as new members and Daryl and Beth as returning board members after leaving the board for a time,” said Jim Argue, Jr., UMFA president and CEO.

Clark serves as the associate vice president of development and dean of the chapel for Hendrix College in Conway. Before this appointment, he served as the college’s chaplain. He previously was pastor of Hawley Memorial UMC Pine Bluff and associate pastor of First UMC Magnolia.

Beth Deere

Beth Deere

Pulaski Heights UMC Little Rock has been the focus of Coker’s religious life for more than 35 years, and he is member of the Newton Good News Class. He was National Sales Consultant for eDocAmerica, an organization that provides electronic access to healthcare for employees and corporations worldwide.

Deere is a United States Magistrate Judge and periodically teaches classes at the William H. Bowen School of Law. She is active in the Henry Woods Inn of Court and serves on the 8th Circuit Model Jury Instruction Committee. Deere is also a member of Pulaski Heights UMC.

John Robbins

John Robbins

Currently senior pastor of Central UMC Fayetteville, Robbins previously served as senior pastor of Marvin UMC in Tyler, Texas; Trinity UMC in Arlington, Texas, and other churches in the Central Texas Conference, where he was elected a Jurisdictional Conference delegate in 2000 and 2004.

Wisener is a CPA who retired as a community executive with Simmons First Bank in Monticello. He is a member of First UMC Monticello, where he teaches Dave Ramsey’s biblical approach to financial peace. He is incoming chairman of the Committee on Finance and Administration for the Arkansas Conference of the UMC.

Bill Wisener

Bill Wisener

The United Methodist Foundation of Arkansas manages $135 million in endowment funds and other charitable assets that benefit local churches and other United Methodist ministries. Founded in 1963, UMFA is one of the largest United Methodist foundations in the country and is responsible for more than 750 funds that support United Methodist ministries.