Thursday, December 5, 2013

How Can a Small, Rural Church be in Mission? Meet a NC Laity with Answers!

Gary has  been married to Panthia Locklear for 40 years. They have three children, Nakesha 37; Garrick 34; Autumn, 24 a daughter-in-law, Kimberly, son-in law, Chad, three grand sons and a grand daughter.

Gary was educated in Robeson County North Carolina and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke in 1970 with a bachelor of science degree. Gary taught in the Public School of Robeson County for three years. Gary spent the next twenty seven years in private industry in manufacturing management, Hunan Resources and Training and development. Gary retired from that post in 2000. Six months later Gary accepted a three year assignment as a 10-10-10 Missionary working with Native American Ministries in the North Carolina Conference. Since then Gary was commissioned a Church and Community Worker and a Home Missioner. Gary’s work remains in the Native American Congregations of the North Carolina Conference with the Rockingham District Native American Cooperative Ministry.

Gary  has been a member of the same United Methodist Church all his life where he has served in almost every leadership role: Sunday Teacher 40 years, Bible Study Leader, Conference Committee on Native American Ministries. Gary was the conference Lay recipient of the Harry Denman Award in 2006. Gary was elected to his first term as North Carolina Conference Lay Leader in 2012.
Gary was elected to General Conference in 2004, 2008 and 2012. Gary’s passion for the small membership church and its preservation, particularly in the Native American Community. Gary says ,” I would like to use my experience and skills to work with others on issues and concerns that affect the life of the church today and in the future. My background is in the small rural church. I have given much of my life the understanding and working with many rural churches across our conference and the General Church”.

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