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Rev. Rick Casebolt – First UMC, Gilbert

by | Jul 17, 2018 | East District News Webpage

Casebolt, Rev. Rick

Rev. Rick Casebolt

I must admit that like many of you living in the Desert Southwest, I have not always been a desert dweller. I was born in Missouri and raised in the Midwestern states of Illinois and Indiana. I met my wife to be in Collinsville Illinois in the mid 60’s. We were married Christmas Eve 1971 while I was home on leave from the Army. Jan and I lived in Arlington, Virginia where I did my three year tour of service. I was a driver for the Pentagon Motor Pool and was the primary ambulance driver for the unit.

Our daughter Jennifer was born at Walter Reed in 1974 the year we were discharged and moved back to the Midwest. Thanks to the GI Bill, I was able to attend classes at Southern Illinois University where I received my BS in Medical Science in 1978. Shortly thereafter, our family moved to Decatur, Indiana where we would live and work for the next 22 years.

Jan and I church shopped for many years before finally settling down at St. Mark’s UMC in Decatur. This church was the setting for my call to ministry which began ever so quietly and increased to a near deafening decibel.

We moved in 2000 to Tucson AZ, became involved in St. Paul’s ministries, and became a candidate for ministry in 2008. God had been calling for a decade and a half and finally I submitted. This would turn out to be the best decision of my life. (Right up there with marrying Jan) As of 2018, I can say I have been serving as pastor for eight years and I feel like I am just getting started.

I love to share the love of Christ from the pulpit, in the classroom, and anywhere else the opportunity presents itself. I enjoy making the Scriptures come alive and be of practical use as we all strive to cope in today’s ever-changing techno-culture. I believe the Bible witnesses to circumstances—joyous and tragic, that are part of our daily living.

I have been a Methodist for some time now, but I have roots in the Evangelical and United Brethren Churches. I’d like to think I’m totally grounded and well-rounded. Being older than some when I began a pastoral career, I feel like I bring the best of two worlds into ministry. I have a recent, cutting edge seminary education tempered with a lifetime of practical experience. This combination has proven to be highly effective in connecting those who have not always been churchgoers with God who calls us into a loving relationship.

I believe we are created for wholeness of life and that wholeness involves the overlapping circles of body, mind, and spirit. Along with a daily routine of scripture reading, prayer, and creativity, I enjoy cycling, walks with my wife, and riding my “other” bike . I enjoy flying and consider myself a pretty good fisherman. I read technical and mechanical magazines and enjoy taking things apart (with good intentions about putting them back together).

Finally, I love being a Methodist—Methodists love the Lord and share the love God has for us and made manifest in Jesus Christ. Methodists take care of each other and strive to follow Reuben Job’s Three Simple Rules: Do no harm….Do Good…Stay in love with God. I believe if we earnestly apply these rules to our daily lives, God is pleased.

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