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Carroll County Times
Carroll County Lifestyles

Churches install the Rev. Thomas as new pastor

Bixlers and Millers United Methodist churches installed their new pastor, the Rev. Dr. Art Thomas, at a joint service July 13 at Millers Church, and also celebrated the 35th anniversary of his ordination as a pastor in 1979.

Thomas is already known to many in Carroll County as pastor of Messiah United Methodist Church in Taneytown from 2000 until 2011, a former officer in Caring and Sharing Ministries, a spiritual director on Walk to Emmaus retreats in New Windsor and the person in charge of the historic restoration of the John Evans House.

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The John Evans House in New Windsor, built in about 1760, is where the first Methodist Class meeting in the New World took place in 1768.

In addition to his full-time appointment with the Bixlers and Millers churches, Thomas serves part time as professor of Christian Spirituality at the Ecumenical Institute of Theology of St. Mary's Seminary in Baltimore and as adjunct professor of the History of Spirituality and Christianity at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C.

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"I hope to offer some simplified versions of these seminary classes at my new parishes. These courses would include separate classes on spiritual disciplines, prayer, spiritual gifts, healing ministry, Bible study, the Spiritual Life, and Saints and Spiritual Practices. The community will be cordially invited to any of these," he wrote. "I was glad to learn that both churches have audio-visual equipment to allow me to preach Biblical sermons with multi-media slides using famous works of arts and contemporary photographs as a means of theological proclamation. I will continue to offer my services to those in the community needing a certified spiritual director. I hope to begin a prayer group and am interested in working with other area clergy in forming a Manchester-Westminster chapter of the Order of St. Luke the Physician, an organization dedicated to monthly ecumenical meetings for teaching about Christian healing and holding periodic conferences for healing ministry."

Bixlers Church, at 3372 Bixlers Church Road, north of Westminster, has Sunday services at 9 a.m. and Millers Church, at 3435 Warehime Road in Millers, meets at 10:30 a.m.


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