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“Clergy shall be appointed by the bishop, who is empowered to make and fix all appointments in the episcopal area of which the annual conference is a part. Appointments are to be made with consideration of the gifts and evidence of God’s grace of those appointed, to the needs, characteristics, and opportunities of congregations and institutions, and with faithfulness to the commitment to an open itineracy.”

– The 2016 Book of Discipline of The United Methodist Church. ¶425

Appointments List

The Desert Southwest Conference Appointments list is updated throughout the year. To view the current appointment list, click this link:  Appointments 2022-2023 effective 10-25-22

Appointment Process 

  • Value Priorities in Appointment Making: The philosophy of appointments in the Desert Southwest Conference as used by the Bishop, Cabinet, Clergy, and Local Church Leadership follows a strict value system that is based on the following diagram:
    1. Our first consideration is the Will of God, so we seek to discern what God wishes for every appointment. This means we are in deep prayer and discernment over every appointment.
    2. Our second level of priority is the Kin-dom of God through the surrounding mission field and neighborhood where the church is located. Clergy appointments are made to the mission field as much as to the local church, as John Wesley advocated for, and as practiced in early Methodism.
    3. Our third priority is the local church and the laity, as they are the heart and soul of every single appointment.
    4. Our fourth priority is the clergy themselves. As we practice servant leadership, we acknowledge that we are called to serve and not be served.
    5. The lowest priority is the Annual Conference, Bishop and Cabinet, as we exemplify what it means to serve.

  • Expectations: As mentioned earlier, the Cabinet will be in prayer to deeply discern the match between the mission field, the local church and the gifts and graces of the pastor asked to serve.
    1. There is an expectation that the Cabinet will share with a pastor the complete rationale of why we believe the pastor is being matched with a particular church.
    2. There is also an expectation of an open itinerancy, and if a clergy person cannot move because of significant family issues, we will enter into a “Covenant of Limited Itineration,” whereby full-time appointment may not be possible, as we discern what is available in any given local area.

We hope and pray that this way of appointment making will continue to be both liberating and helpful to our annual conference and God’s Kin-dom that we are pledged to serve.

Be the Hope,

Bishop Grant J. Hagiya
Phoenix Area Resident Bishop
The United Methodist Church

Appointment Announcement November 20, 2022

Lee, Pastor Robin

The Rev. Javier Olivares, Missional Strategist and Superintendent of the West District, announced that Bishop Grant J. Hagiya intends to appoint Pastor Rob Lee as Interim Pastor, less than full time, at United Methodist Outreach Ministries (UMOM) in Phoenix, AZ, effective November 21, 2022, per paragraphs ¶344.1d and 318.2 of the 2016 United Methodist Book of Discipline.

Pastor Patricia Magyar has served as the Pastor of UMOM Residents since 2019. She will become the Director of Visitation at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church in Indianapolis, IN, effective December 4, 2022.

Let us be in prayer for Pastor Lee, UMOM, Pastor Patricia Magyar, and St. Luke’s UMC at this time.

Appointment Announcement November 8, 2022

The Rev. Matt Ashley, Missional Strategist and Superintendent of the South District, announced that Bishop Grant J. Hagiya appointed Pastor Ed Brown as Prison Chaplain, less than full time, at the Central Arizona Florence Correctional Complex in Florence, AZ effective October 12, 2022, per paragraph ¶344.1b of the 2016 United Methodist Book of Discipline. Pastor Brown will continue to serve as part time local pastor at First UMC in Eloy, AZ.

Let us be in prayer for Pastor Brown, First UMC of Eloy and the Central AZ Florence Correctional Complex at this time.

Appointment Announcements October 24, 2022

Soon, Pastor Stephanie

The Rev. Javier Olivares, Missional Strategist and Superintendent of the West District, announced that Bishop Grant J. Hagiya intends to appoint the Rev. Stephanie Soon as Music Director, less than full-time, at New Song United Methodist Church in Surprise, AZ, effective Tuesday, October 25, 2022, per ¶357.6 of the 2016 United Methodist Book of Discipline. Rev. Soon is a retired deacon in the Desert Southwest Conference.

Let us be in prayer for Rev. Soon and New Song UMC during this transition.

Test Announcement for October 26

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Appointment Announcements October 17, 2022

The Rev. Javier Olivares, Missional Strategist and Superintendent of the West District, announced that Bishop Grant J. Hagiya intends to appoint Rev. David Rennick as Senior Pastor of First UMC in Phoenix, AZ, effective December 1, 2022. Rev. Rennick is currently serving as Executive Pastor at First UMC in Phoenix, AZ.

Rev. Denny Silk has been serving as the Senior Pastor since July 1, 2018 and will be returning to retirement on November 30, 2022.

Let us be in prayer for Rev. Rennick, Rev. Silk, and First UMC, Phoenix, AZ, during this time.

Appointment Announcements October 1, 2022

The Rev. Javier Olivares, Missional Strategist and Superintendent of the West District, announced that Bishop Grant J. Hagiya has affirmed that Bishop Michael McKee of the North Texas Conference of The United Methodist Church, intends to appoint Rev. Katherine Ziegler Tang as Director of Pastoral Care at Methodist Health System in Dallas, TX, effective October 10, 2022, per paragraphs ¶346.1, ¶343.2, and ¶344.3 of the 2016 United Methodist Book of Discipline. Rev. Tang was previously appointed as the Associate Director of Spiritual Care, Clinical Pastoral Education and Volunteer Services for Banner University Medical Center in Phoenix, AZ.

Let us be in prayer for Rev. Tang, her family and Methodist Health System at this time.

Appointment Announcements September 19, 2022

The Rev. Melissa Rynders, Missional Strategist and Superintendent of the East District, announced that Bishop Grant J. Hagiya intends to appoint the Rev. Robert Payne as Pastor of Worship and Engagement at Desert Mission UMC, Scottsdale, AZ, effective September 19, 2022 per ¶ 346.2 of the 2016 United Methodist Book of Discipline. Rev. Payne is an ordained pastor in the Southern Baptist Convention.

Let us be in prayer for Rev. Robert Payne and Desert Mission UMC during this time.

Appointment Announcements August 29, 2022

The Rev. Javier Olivares, Missional Strategist and Superintendent of the West District, announced that Bishop Grant J. Hagiya intends to appoint the Rev. Misty Howick as pastor of New Song United Methodist Church in Surprise, AZ, less than full-time, effective September 1, 2022. Rev. Howick will continue to serve Spirit Song United Methodist Fellowship in Peoria, AZ, less than full-time.

Let us be in prayer for Rev. Howick, New Song UMC, and Spirit Song UMF during this time.

Appointment Announcements August 22, 2022

The Rev. Melissa Rynders, Missional Strategist and Superintendent of the East District, announced that Bishop Grant J. Hagiya has appointed the Rev. Brenda Smith as Chaplain of Common Spirit Hospitals in Chandler and Gilbert, AZ, effective August 15, 2022, per ¶331.4a of the 2016 United Methodist Book of Discipline. Rev. Smith was previously appointed to the Clinical Pastoral Education Program at Banner University Medical Center in Phoenix, AZ.

Let us be in prayer for Rev. Smith and Common Spirit Hospitals at this time.

Appointment Announcements August 15, 2022

The Rev. Melissa Rynders, Missional Strategist and Superintendent of the East District announces that Bishop Grant J. Hagiya intends to appoint the Rev. Ron Friesen as Assistant Minister of Care, less than full-time, at Shepherd of the Hills UMC in Sun City West, AZ, effective August 16, 2022, per  ¶346.2 of the 2016 United Methodist Book of Discipline. Rev. Friesen is an ordained Mennonite Pastor.

Let us be in prayer for Rev. Friesen and Shepherd of the Hills UMC during this transition and for a fulfilling ministry together.