Hello I am Candy, the senior Pastor here at Bethel. It has been my joy to serve Bethel since June of 2012. Some people worry about how often Methodist ministers move. I tend to stay put for a while with each appointment. This is my third church appointment since my ordination within the North Georgia Conference in 1998.
My ministry focus and gift is in pastoral care. I am pretty good at giving people a safe space to share their heart. My educational experience comes from Candler School of Theology at Emory University, where I obtained the Master of Divinity and McCormick Theological Seminary where I received the Doctor of Ministry.
My family is small and scattered. I have two adult children, Fiana and Ian. My siblings and cousins largely reside in Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, and a little place called New Market, Alabama.
Places of renewal for me have been the church, mountains, and water. I also enjoy escaping with a book and notebook for journaling. Other interests include genealogy research, playing card games, and bowling.
Doreen has been a member of Bethel UMC since 1995. During this time she has served as Finance Chair, Stewardship Chair, UMW treasurer and Bethel’s treasurer for over 15 years. Other activities included the Board of Trustees, Youth, TLC, Lay Nominations and Missions.
In 2003, stepping out on great faith Doreen volunteered with Bethel’s first international mission team going to Guatemala and later to Honduras. However, preferring local soil all other mission work has been in the US, including Tennessee with the Youth and Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina.
As a retiree, her new passion is working with the Awesome Blossom Spring Fest committee raising money for Bethel “community” missions. Doreen’s hobbies have included sewing, gardening, Competition Archery and Marksmanship, attending the Cobb County Citizens Police Academy in 1992. She enjoys her collection of clocks, Norman Rockwell plates and knives, of which she has over 25.
Doreen and her husband Tim have been married for 24 years and have 2 cats and 3 dogs.
Children Ministry Director
Hello, my name is Valerie Blackburn, and I volunteer as the Children’s Ministry Director at Bethel UMC. I really enjoy working with the children and their families. I have been at Bethel for 6 years, and have over 40 years of experience in sharing God’s word and the love of Jesus with children.
I am very excited to have the opportunity to spend time with your children and get to know you as well.
I enjoy spending time with my family and friends. I also enjoy my special time with my fur babies Autumn and Celine, both rescued Calico kitties.
I like going to the movies, working in my yard, and reading.