Rev. Dr. Bradley Call is new Three Rivers District Superintendent

| March 12, 2015
Rev. Dr. Bradley Call is the new Three Rivers United Methodist Church District superintendent. Call began his duties on July 1, 2014 after Jim Humphrey’s, his predecessor, term expired.

Rev. Dr. Bradley Call is the new Three Rivers United Methodist Church District superintendent. Call began his duties on July 1, 2014 after Jim Humphrey’s, his predecessor, term expired.

COSHOCTON – The Three Rivers United Methodist Church District welcomed a new superintendent on July 1 of last year. Rev. Dr. Bradley Call was called to the position by Bishop John Hopkins after serving as pastor of Thoburn United Methodist Church in St. Clairsville since 2005.

Dr. Call has been an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church Ministry since 1977 and was first appointed to West Park United Methodist Church in Wintersville in a part-time position for six months. He was then pastor in Midvale from March 1978 through June 1987 and then served at Cambridge Ninth Street Church from 1987 through 1995. He pastored Roscoe United Methodist Church from July 1995 through October 1997.

Call then began serving on the General Board of Global Ministries in the office of Finance and Field Service.

“I got to travel all over the place and visit a variety of churches,” Call said. “It was interesting to get an overview of the types of churches in different geographical settings.”

After the events of Sept. 11, 2001, the board downsized and Call started his own partnership, Church Stewardship Consultants, which had the same mission as the General Board of Global Ministries. During this time, he also served as a steward in the United Methodist Church Foundation of New England. He served there until 2005 when he was appointed to Thoburn where he was pastor for nine years before being appointed to superintendent. He and his family then made the move back to the area to accept his new position.

“I’ve enjoyed coming back to Coshocton,” Call said. “I’ve renewed some friendships with people I knew years ago.”

Each superintendent has the responsibility to serve the needs of every United Methodist church in all or parts of 10 counties, which includes 71 churches and 58 pastors. With the help of the District Mission Administration, the superintendent oversees the placement of United Methodist pastors in the district and handles any concerns or suggestions from pastors or congregational members of each church.

The district superintendent has three main objectives. Each year, the superintendent meets with each United Methodist pastor in the district and the pastor parish relations committee to discuss the church’s needs, concerns, ministries, finances, and any other business. The pastor will raise any concerns he or she has at this time about the church in general. This is usually a three-month process. The charge conference follows and is an annual business meeting with approximately three to six churches present at one time to discuss salaries for local pastors and approve annual budgets. At the beginning of the year, the superintendent meets with the cabinet and the bishop to discuss pastors who will be moving from one church to another. Each pastor is matched to the church where he or she can provide the congregation with their current needs in ministry.

Since being appointed to the superintendent of Three Rivers, Call has a vision and a mission for the United Methodist Churches in the district.

“We need to help clarify who we are as the United Methodist Church and to help churches be in better relationships with one another,” Call said. “We can accomplish our mission by working together far better than we can as individual churches. We need to know one another, experience our Wesleyan roots, and find the best way to help people reach the Kingdom of God in an ever-changing world.”

Call said that despite an overall declining church congregation, the Three Rivers District seems to be seeing a slight increase.

“In a world that wants to be spiritual but not religious, finding a way to keep the church relevant is a challenge,” said Call. “I still believe Christ died for our sins and God’s grace is greater than anything that would separate us from God. God’s grace is big enough for all of God’s people to live together. If we all gather and not demonize one another and listen to what we have to say, I think we’d find we have so much more in common than what separates us.”

Call graduated from Malone College in Canton with a BA in Christian Ministries. He is also a graduate of Ashland Theological Seminary where he earned a Master in Divinity. He received a Doctorate in Ministry from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. He was past president of Kiwanis and was a member of the Wellsville Chamber of Commerce.

Call lives in Newcomerstown with his wife, Sue, a retired elementary school teacher. They have one daughter, Kristi Prucha who is a high school choir teacher in New Philadelphia and an organist for her church. Their son, Andy, is a pastor in Oberlin, Ohio. They have five grandchildren.

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Category: Faith

About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

Comments (2)

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  1. appreciated the story about Dr. Call. Well done, Beth!

  2. Twila Scott says:

    This was a very good article. You did a terrific job on it.