Since Don Thomas took over the role as First Farragut’s head pastor in July, he has immersed himself in ministering to its members and the surrounding community.
“Don’s upbeat and authentic messages show genuine care for people and true passion for his ministry calling,” Jill Wolverton, church member, said.
“It is a joy to love, serve and encourage all in their walk of life and faith,” Thomas said. “As I have been shaped, nurtured and guided by people of all ages in the church, I want others to know that same experience of Christ’s grace.”
A native of Marion, Va., Thomas said he knew he was called to the ministry as a junior in high school. At 20, while still a student, he became a modern-day circuit-riding preacher in McMinn County, serving the Athens Parish. He met his wife, Anna, at Tennessee Wesleyan College, and they now have two grown children and two grandchildren with a third grandchild on the way.
In his spare time, Thomas said he enjoys photography, container gardening, mall-walking and reading.
He most enjoys chasing around those grandkids, who call him Grandon.
Thomas began his pastoral ministry in the Holston Confer-ence of the United Methodist Church in 1972. He completed his Master of Divinity degree in 1977 at Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta, Ga.
He came to First Farragut United Methodist Church from Trinity United Methodist Church in Knoxville, where he served since 2006.
He entered the U.S. Navy Reserve chaplaincy in 1986, and that same year he was instrumental in founding the annual youth ministry event called Resurrection.
He is active in the Kiwanis civic club.
First Farragut offers two Sunday services at 9 and 11 a.m., Sunday school, children and youth programming and other service op-portunities.
Visit www.ffumc.org for more information about FFUMC.