By Daniel Thompson
Reporter 

Kimball's Trinity United Methodist Church welcomes a new leader

 


Carla Gunn, the new pastor at the United Methodist Church here in Kimball, is a great example of the fact that it is never too late to find your calling in life.

Gunn, 60, started attending seminary school at St. Paul School of Theology in Kansas City when she was in her 50's. However, this was not her first brush with holding a leadership position in a Christian setting.

"I started out in education, and then I moved into Christian education. It just was like God was calling me all along and preparing me," Gunn said.

Before coming to Kimball, Gunn had served as the associate pastor at Kearney First United Methodist Church in Kearney, Nebraska and had also served at Martell and Hallam United Methodist Churches just southwest of Lincoln.

However, when asked about the most memorable experiences that she has had while working in ministry for the past 5 years, the majority of them took place during her stint volunteering approximately 10 hours per week for the year and a half that she served at Grand Avenue Temple United Methodist Church while still in seminary school in Kansas City.

"I worked with the sojourner of the homeless population. I just really enjoyed that. It was a real education in addition to my seminary education. I also helped with the emergency women's shelter there. I cooked meals and helped out with studies. That was something that really touched me."

Though, Gunn has lived in Nebraska most of her life being born and raised in Edgar, Nebraska just southeast of Hastings, she is still brand new to the Kimball area. However, Gunn already has ideas for what she'd like to see accomplished during her time as pastor here, but she also acknowledges that in order for anything to be successful it must be a group effort.

"I have lots of ideas, but it's important that the faith community actually be a part of that, coming up with those ideas. They have to be willing to do the work behind it. It has to be a dream of all of ours, not just mine," Gunn said.

When it comes to her specific vision for the church in her time as pastor, Gunn desires to offer assistance in specific areas along with covering the general needs of the Kimball community.


"I would envision that we identify something specific in the community that we can minister to. I don't know what that is, and God will lead the way on that. I think it's important for us to get outside the four walls of our church as a faith community and make a difference in the world," Gunn said.

Gunn and the methodist church also hope to reach the youths of the community through various events.

"I know that children and youth is something the church is interested in. We're going to have a puppet ministry here, and that involves youth as well as children," Gunn said.

In the future, Gunn has also expressed a desire to get a mission group started in Kimball.

"I would like to see us involved in mission work either locally or elsewhere. Mission work is probably my big passion," Gunn said.

For now, Gunn will simply start out by taking time to settle in and become immersed in her new community.

"My husband, Randy, and I live in Bushnell, and we've found both communities very welcoming. We've enjoyed the hospitality, and the less humid air that comes with the great West. I'm just excited to get to know everyone and get a feel for where we can best minister here," Gunn said.

 

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