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Providence UMC welcomes new senior pastor

This Sunday, June 23, Providence United Methodist Church will welcome a new senior pastor, the Rev. Diane Parrish.

Parrish, a graduate of University of Florida and Candler School of Theology, came to Providence after having been senior associate pastor at Mt. Bethel UMC in Marietta since 1999.

“I’m looking forward to getting to know people in Fayette and Coweta counties and to getting started in ministry with the Providence UMC church family,” she said.

Parrish says she has passions for music and for ministering to the children of those who are incarcerated. Before she became ordained, she performed as a composer, arranger and vocalist in concert and on television. After being ordained in 1997, she started working with the children of prisoners.

Parrish has been involved in prison ministry throughout her career, is actively involved in the Bill Glass Champions for Life prison ministry, and has served on many Kairos prison ministry teams.

After serving as chairman of the board for Rainbows for All God’s Children, she was appointed to the Governor’s Special Task force to expand prison ministries in the state of Georgia. To help give these at-risk children hope for the future, in 1999 she founded kidz2leaders, inc., a 501(c)(3) organization which works with fourth grade through college-aged children of prisoners. Through programs including Camp Hope, interns4tomorrow, hope4christmas and Leadership Training Academy, children and teens have fun and are given encouragement, direction and love.

In 2008, Parrish received the 11Alive Community Service Award for her work at kidz2leaders (www.kidz2leaders.org).

Parrish has published many Bible studies and inspirational writings, most recently a study of Psalm 23 titled, “Navigating Life,” which will be the basis for a church-wide study at Providence beginning Aug. 18.

Providence is at 592 Bernhard Road in southern Fayette County between Redwine Road and Ga. Hwy. 85. Call 770-719-8800 for more information.

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