Global Ministries

The United Methodist Church

Connecting the Church in Mission

Seventeen New United Methodist Missionaries to be Blessed and Sent in Near Future

By Elliot Wright and Ivy Couch*

Seventeen new United Methodist missionaries will be blessed on May 8, 2017 by leaders of the church’s worldwide mission agency in preparation for being formally commissioned (sent) at regional church conferences in the late spring and early summer.

The blessing, which will include a foot-washing ceremony, will conclude three weeks of orientation for the new personnel. It will take place at the headquarters of Global Ministries at Grace United Methodist Church at 458 Ponce De Leon Avenue, Atlanta. Watch the blessing service live, on May 8, 2017 at 10am.

The 17 individuals are from six countries and will serve in a total of eight countries. Nine service sites are in the United States, three of which are in Puerto Rico. Two placements are in Switzerland, and one each in Cambodia, Canada, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Japan, Nicaragua, and Palestine/Israel.

In addition to the United States, countries of origin for this new class of missionaries include Japan, Korea, Mexico, Switzerland, and Zimbabwe.

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Newly commissioned missionaries. PHOTO: CYNTHIA MACK

The 17 missionaries will serve in a variety of roles as global missionaries, Church and Community Workers, and two individuals serving as an Ethnic/Racial Plan missionaries. The latter two missionary categories are assigned in the United States.

In most cases, the new missionaries will be commissioned in their home annual (regional) conferences by resident bishops.

The following are the 17 missionaries who will be blessed in the service:

Church and Community Workers:

• Joanne Marie Davis, Missouri Annual Conference, serving at Hope in the Mountains, West Virginia Annual Conference
• Janet L. Horman, Florida Annual Conference, serving at Justice for Our Neighbors in Florida
• Quest J. Hunter, New York Annual Conference, serving in Global Ministries/community engagement missionary, Atlanta, North Georgia Annual Conference

Global Missionaries:

• John-Paul Dietrich, Switzerland-France Annual Conference, serving as South Congo Episcopal Area project coordinator
• Elizabeth Heft, West Ohio Annual Conference, serving as teacher at Jerusalem School Bethlehem, Palestine/Israel
• Jin Yang Kim, Northern Illinois Annual Conference, serving as coordinator of Korean Peninsula Dialogue and Peacekeeping, World Council of Churches, Geneva, Switzerland
• Andrew Soon Lee, California-Pacific Annual Conference, serving as country coordinator, Methodist Mission in Cambodia
• Erica Kay Oliveira, South Carolina Annual Conference, serving as mission advocate, Generation Transformation, Global Ministries, Atlanta
• Tazvionepi Nyarota, Zimbabwe East Annual Conference, serving in the Zimbabwean community, Western Canada/United Church of Canada
• Carmen Ana Perez-Rios, from and serving in the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico
• Luis Daniel Roman-Hernandez, from and serving in the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico
Kyeong-Ah Woo, Northern Illinois Annual Conference, serving with the Commission on World Mission and Evangelism, World Council of Churches, Geneva, Switzerland
• Maria de Lourdes Ramirez Meneses, Methodist Church of Mexico, serving in the national office, Evangelical Methodist Church of Nicaragua
• Satomi McCurley, United Church of Christ in Japan, serving at the Asia Rural Institute, Japan
• Sonia Noemí Vargas-Maldonado, from and serving in the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico

Racial/Ethnic Plans

• Lilia M Ramirez-Jimenez, Presbyterian Church USA, serving with the National Plan for Hispanic/Latino Ministries, Global Ministries, Atlanta
Keihwan Kevin Ryoo, Dakotas Annual Conference, serving in the Korean Ministry Plan, Global Ministries, Los Angeles, California-Pacific Annual Conference


*Elliott Wright is information consultant for Global Ministries. Ivy Couch is the Missionary Service program area liaison.