Preachers and Speakers

Bishop Michael McKeeBishop Michael McKee

Michael McKee is a native of Fort Worth, Texas. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin (1973), a Master of Theology from Perkins School of Theology of Southern Methodist University (1978), and was awarded an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Texas Wesleyan University (2005).

He was ordained deacon in 1975 and ordained elder in 1979 in the Central Texas Annual Conference, where he served several churches, including most recently 15 years as the senior pastor of First UMC, Hurst.

He has held numerous offices including chair of the Board of Ordained Ministry and the Mid-Cities District Committee of Ordained Ministry. He was a delegate to three Jurisdictional Conferences and two General Conferences.

In 2012, McKee was elected to the episcopacy by the South Central Jurisdictional Conference and assigned to serve as the resident bishop of the Dallas Area effective September 1, 2012.

McKee is currently president of the South Central Jurisdiction College of Bishops. He is president of the Board of the General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) of the UMC. He serves on the Boards of Trustees of Southern Methodist University, Texas Methodist Foundation, Southwestern University, and Methodist Health System, Dallas and is chair of the Executive Board of Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University.

Mike and Joan (Craig) McKee have been married since 1975 and have two adult children: Erin, who lives with her husband, Darin, and sons, Knox and Ford, in California; and Meredith, who lives in Dallas.

Philip RhodesRev. Philip Rhodes
Guest Preacher

Jesus Follower. Husband. Father. Preacher.
Prefers high-end hair products. Loves golf. Hates golf.
Has a passion for the Church, and, contrary to some,
believes her best days are ahead of us … Not behind us.

Philip Rhodes has been the Senior Pastor of First United Methodist Church of Hurst since 2013. He is a graduate of Perkins School of Theology at SMU. Philip serves on several Central Texas Conference and East District committees.

Philip was born in England and moved to the United States with his family when he was 10 years old. He has been married to Lynne since 1990. They have two children, Nicolas who is a senior at Oklahoma City University and Brenna who is currently a freshman at Midwestern State University.

Philip and Lynne share a love for ministry – Lynne is the Manager of Volunteers & Church Engagement for Project Transformation Dallas. Philip considers working in and with the community of Hurst an awesome privilege and loves to play golf when he has the chance.

Rev. Greg JonesRev. Greg Jones
Keynote Speaker

L. Gregory Jones is a leader and strategist whose creative engagement has helped institutions across the world to create transformational resource models. Greg’s global imagination has guided business, education, and religious leaders in Africa, Asia, Europe and the United States. Greg has a particular gift for incubating talent, ideas, and networks. He is passionate about re-shaping cultures within and across organizations and has coined the term ‘traditioned innovation’ to capture how he re-frames complex challenges to seize significant opportunities.

Greg currently serves as the Executive Vice President and Provost of Baylor University. He also continues to serve as Senior Fellow of Leadership Education at Duke Divinity. Previously he has served as the Ruth W. and A. Morris Williams, Jr. Professor of Theology and Christian Ministry at Duke Divinity School, and as Senior Strategist for the Fuqua-Coach K Center for Leadership and Ethics. He also has served in many other leadership roles at Duke, including as Duke University‘s Vice President and Vice Provost for Global Strategy and Programs. Greg served for thirteen years as Dean of Duke’s Divinity School (1997-2010) where he led the institution to a significant expansion of resources, networks and impact. Greg is a gifted speaker, a noted writer, and a trusted advisor who helps leaders imagine new possibilities and shape cultures for organizational success and productivity.

Known for his entrepreneurial leadership and fund-raising ability, Greg’s deanship was marked by significant growth in Duke Divinity School. More than $102 million was raised under Greg’s leadership in The Campaign for Duke (1998-2003). Major new initiatives during his tenure included Leadership Education at Duke Divinity, the Center for Reconciliation, the Thriving Rural Communities Program, the Duke Youth Academy for Christian Formation, the Clergy Health Initiative, the Reynolds Program in Church Leadership, and international partnerships, especially with the Methodist Church of Southern Africa, the United Methodist Church in Cote d’Ivoire, and the Center for Reconciliation’s Great Lakes Initiative which embraces the central-east African region.

Greg is the author or editor of 17 books, including Christian Social Innovation: Renewing Wesleyan Witness in 2016, the co-authored Forgiving As We’ve Been Forgiven: Community Practices for Making Peace (with Celestin Musekura, in 2010), the co-authored Resurrecting Excellence (with Kevin R. Armstrong, in 2006), Everyday Matters: Intersections of Life and Faith (2003), and the widely acclaimed Embodying Forgiveness (1995). Jones, an ordained United Methodist pastor, has published more than 200 articles in a variety of publications. He is an editor-at-large for Christian Century, and writes regularly for Faith & Leadership, the web magazine published by Leadership Education at Duke Divinity.

Greg is also widely sought after as a consultant and speaker. He is married to the Rev. Susan Pendleton Jones, Senior Fellow at Baylor’s Institute for Faith and Learning. They are the parents of three children: Nathan, Ben and Sarah, and are grateful for their daughter-in-law, Amy Little Jones.

Rev. Matt MiofskyRev. Matt Miofsky
Keynote Speaker

Matt Miofsky is the Lead Pastor of The Gathering in St. Louis, Missouri. Since Matt founded The Gathering in 2006, it has grown into a thriving multi-site congregation with four locations scattered throughout St. Louis. With over 1500 in worship a weekend, The Gathering was recently named the 3rd fastest growing large United Methodist Churches.

Matt is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis where he majored in mathematics then completed his Master’s of Divinity at Emory University in Atlanta. He served as an associate pastor for a local UM church in St. Louis before starting The Gathering.

Matt is passionate about church planting, connecting with new generations, and multi-site ministry. He frequently speaks and teaches on these subjects. Matt is the author of Happy? What It Is and How to Find It (Abingdon Books, April 2017), Fail: What to Do When Things Go Wrong (Abingdon Books, expected release date late 2017), a contributor to Disciple Fast Track: Into the Word, Into the World (Abingdon, 2017), Flipping Church: How Successful Church Planters Are Turning Conventional Wisdom Upside-Down (Discipleship Resources, 2016), and the Ask: Faith Questions in a Skeptical Age DVD project (Abingdon, 2015).

When he’s not writing, preaching, or teaching, he enjoys spending time with his wife and three kids.

Rev. DeAndre JohnsonRev. DeAndre Johnson
Worship and Music Leader

Hailing from Shreveport, DeAndre received his bachelor of music in sacred music degree from Centenary College of Louisiana and master of sacred music degree from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. He has worked in various churches in both Louisiana and Texas. As an ordained deacon in The United Methodist Church, DeAndre is passionate about facilitating meaningful worship experiences that are intentionally cross-cultural, calling the church into a deeper commitment to reconciliation. He is frequently invited to lead worship in various settings, offer consultations for churches and teach courses in worship leadership. DeAndre has served as worship coordinator for the Texas Annual Conference, worship leader for the 2013 General Board of Higher Education & Ministry (GBHEM) Exploration in Denver, music coordinator for the 2016 General Conference in Portland, and music coordinator for the 2016 World Methodist Conference in Houston. He has also served as chorus master for the Houston Ebony Opera Guild.

He and his wife (Kelsey) followed God’s leading to come to Westbury UMC, relocating their family from Bryan-College Station to Houston in early 2011. Together, they delight in their children, Natalie and Henry, and often take road trips to visit family.

Toolbox Sessions

Greg Jones

Join Greg Jones for a time of questions and reflection upon what it means to infuse the local church with “social innovation” in a Wesleyan mode.
Fleming Rehearsal Hall

Matt Miofsky

Join Matt Miofsky for a time of questions and reflection upon his experience resurrecting churches through what he has learned through “The Gathering.”
Worship and Arts Center

DeAndre Johnson

Join DeAndre Johnson to learn about creative worship relative to a local church’s setting and gifts.

Jeff Bouis

Join Jeff Bouis, conference lay leader, and the Board of Laity for a time of sharing of best practices, resources, and brainstorming about ways to expand and enhance the effectiveness of lay leadership in your local setting. You will have the opportunity to collaborate with lay leaders from across the conference, as well as provide input on how the Board can be more helpful to your local lay leadership as you strive to make your church a more effective witness in your community.
Bartula FLC Rooms ID & E

Debra Hobbs Mason

In a time where interfaith dialogue is essential part of how we understand the Christian church in a global context, join Debra Hobbs Mason for a discussion of faith among faiths.
Mays Hall

Board of Church and Society

Rev. Neal Christie, Assistant General Secretary for Education and Leadership Formation from the General Board of Church and Society in Washington D.C., will be our guest speaker. Neal and other GBCS staff will facilitate questions and conversation about justice in our local communities, raising awareness of the everyday realities of the Social Principles and empowering our local church leaders to act for transformative change in their communities.
Youth Worship Center in Bartula Family Life Center