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April 3, 2022

Dear Church Family,

As many of you know, our Senior Pastor, The Rev. Dr. Geoffrey Lentz, begins a new appointment this summer as the Senior Pastor of Pensacola First United Methodist. Geoffrey led us through a period of great growth and became pastor to the whole Port Saint Joe community by navigating us through the impact of the devastating Category 5 storm, Hurricane Michael.

I know many of you have been wondering who our next Senior Pastor will be, and I am excited to say that we now have an answer.

It is with great joy that I share with you that Bishop David Graves has projected Rev. Dave Barkalow to be appointed as our new Senior Pastor, effective July 1, 2022! He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Religion with an emphasis in Christian Education from Huntingdon College and a Master of Divinity from Duke Divinity School. He served as the Minister to Youth at Capital Height UMC, Chaplain of Huntingdon College, Associate Pastor at Marianna FUMC, Senior Pastor at Tallassee FUMC, and is currently Lead Pastor at Ft. Walton Beach FUMC. Dave is married to Laura Barkalow. They have six children – Andy (17), Zadie (13), Rose (10), Michael (8), Xavier (7), and Saphira (6) who are all excited about the move to Port. St. Joe.

Reflecting on his call to ministry, Rev. Barkalow recalls as a small child attending Sunday night service at his home church. Surrounded by prayer, scripture, and love he thought, “what could be better than this?!” Many years later, as a freshman in college, God would use those same words to cement his calling to build communities centered on prayer, scripture, and love. He is excited to be part of the next chapter here at Port Saint Joe and is looking forward to all that God has for us together.

We look forward to welcoming Rev. Barkalow and family!

We ask the entire congregation to join the SPRC in praying for our church, pastors, and staff during this season of transition.

Sincerely and Respectfully

Andrew M. Barbone
Chair, Staff Parish Relations Committee

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