Love without limits

South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Rev. David Range

Other community posts: Vice president of Bold Justice, a social action group in Broward County.

Education: Degree in economics, Western Maryland College (now McDaniel College), Westminster, Md.; master's degree in divinity, Drew Theological School.

Personal: 52 years old. Born in New Orleans, raised in Maryland.

Family: Married to the Rev. C.J. Walter, pastor of Cokesbury United Methodist Church, Margate. Two children.

How do you operate Bold Justice?

We have a house meeting where people can talk about situations in lives. We then vote in September on one or two issues to address for the year. In April, we have a Nehemiah Action, where we meet with community leaders on what to do with the issues.

What's your emphasis this year?

The issue is crime and police relations. We had representatives from city police departments. We told them that victims of crime often don't feel free to report. We talked about how to improve relations with police departments.

You've spent time in Ireland and Jamaica, and you're now at a mainly Caribbean church. Does that complicate a ministry?

(Laughs) Yes. We went to Drew Theological School, and the president of the Methodist Church in Ireland asked us to do a one-year stint there. My wife and I took that; then we felt called to go overseas.

We were sent by the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries to Jamaica for three years. Then the Irish church asked us to come back for a longer term. We served two churches there for 16 years, then returned to America in 2003.

With your wife as a pastor too, is it hard to avoid talking shop at dinnertime?

It's good to talk about our work and support each other. And we can go to United Methodist district events together.

You also preach a chil0dren's sermon?

We have a children's time in the service. I once used a yo-yo and showed that the string brings it back into my hand. Then I said that God lets us do different things in life, but he can draw us back to himself.

How do you like to relax?

I like to read and exercise at a gym. I like to spend time with my wife and travel. I like to visit museums and see new things.

What's the best museum you've been to?

That's like asking what's your favorite child. They're so different. But I visited a replica of the Globe Theater in London. I enjoyed learning more about Shakespeare.

What book have you been recommending lately?

Right now I'm reading "America's Prophet: Moses and the American Story," by Bruce Feiler. Fascinating account. It's about how Moses has been used in so many ways in shaping the American psyche. George Washington was considered a Moses. So were Abraham Lincoln and Harriet Tubman.

Favorite TV shows?

One of the great dramas we enjoy watching is "House." It's actually a take on Sherlock Holmes. Even the name House is a play on Holmes. And this show is a mystery, trying to track down an illness and treat it. You can't miss a second of it or you'll lose the train.

Favorite film(s)?

With our boys, we enjoy the "Back to the Future" trilogy. The professor says the future is what you make of it. My wife enjoys movies from Jane Austen novels like "Pride and Prejudice." I'll watch those with her.

Favorite music? Favorite performer(s)?

My favorite music is the hymns on Sunday morning. My favorite performers are the members. There's nothing like singing with a congregation like this. They sing with a lot of gusto and ability. It's my favorite time of the week.

What's the most important thing you've ever learned?

God loves us with no strings attached. We can't make him love us any more or less. It's wonderful to live in God's love, and I'm honored to play a role in sharing that.

Is there one thing you can't stand?

I don't like callousness. We don't care for each other enough, in the way society is organized. I would love to see a more caring world.

Your most memorable spiritual experience?

I've had some deep spiritual prayer times with my wife. We've prayed together, and been prayed over by other Christians at times. It's wonderful to have a spiritual partner in your life.

Motto, or favorite Scripture verse?

II Corinthians 5:20: "So we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We beseech you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God."

James D. Davis

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