Colona United Methodist has new pastor

Claudia Loucks
The Rev. David E. Meader has been named pastor at Colona United Methodist Church.

COLONA – The Rev. David Meader has a vision for Colona United Methodist Church…”I see this church on the corner as a place that will be a safe sanctuary for all people.”

Meader recently was named pastor at the Colona church, located at 1709 Cleveland Rd., Colona.

He said, “I know in my heart this will be a building where the youth can learn, go play and rebuild friendships. I know this church has a lot of potential to help people, especially those who are struggling.”

Plans are for many outreach programs to take place in January and Meader said, “I want to invite everyone to come and check out Colona United Methodist Church and all the changes that are happening.”

The pastor was born in Iowa City, Iowa, and was three when he moved with his family to Virginia.

“My father was a Marine for many years,” he said. “I am Native American and Irish. My household growing up belonged to the Baptist church and my mother’s side practice was the spiritual connection of their tribal beliefs: connection to the spirit in heaven and mother earth.”

He graduated from Emmaus College in Dubuque, Iowa, and currently is attending St. Paul Theological Seminary in Leawood, KS, where he will graduate from in the summer of 2022…”Then I will decide to become an Elder or Associate,” he said.

When asked what led him to the ministry, Meader said, “In 1989, I had a major accident at a construction site, and I was forced to move back to Iowa to my Mom’s farm to recover. After my recovery, I tried my hand at carpentry. During my time of recovery, I had a conversation with Lutheran Pastor Quame, who helped me understand that I was being led down a different path.”

I 1995, he began working with a new youth program at First Lutheran Church in Manchester and said it was there he received the calling to become a youth pastor.

His career started in 1995 when he was helping the pastor redesign his youth program and then in 1997, Meader took over the program and started to become the youth program pastor at the church.

He was a youth pastor from 1997 to 2016 and in the summer of 2016, he transferred to become a pastor in the United Methodist denomination.

“I was there for a total of six years until I transferred over to Cornerstone Non-denominational Church, and I worked with the pastor there helping to redesign his youth group,” he explained. “I worked there for six years and I also worked with the United Methodist Church in Iowa to revamp the youth program, where I stayed for four-and-one-half years before transferring to McDowell Church in Livingston County to become the lead pastor there.”

After one year he transferred to Canton and served at the South Park United Methodist Church and The Chapel United Methodist Church for four and one-half years before being called to Colona United Methodist Church in July of this year.

“I was asked to come in and help the church heal and grow to become a shining beacon of the community,” he said.

As head pastor his responsibilities are “to refocus and oversee all committees; to help people understand how to apply scripture in their daily lives, to help strengthen their relationship with Jesus Christ, to visit all that are homebound and sick and to help in serving the community.”

Meader said the scripture he has lived by and leaned on is John 3:17,”In it is stated that ‘he came not to judge the world but to save it and all those that believe in him have eternal life’.”

“The reason that is so significant to me is that while I was growing up and during my time of recovery, I witnessed many cruel things that people did to each other,” he said. “I would always ask myself why God was allowing this to happen. I realized that God ha given us the freedom to choose what we do in our life and by making that choice we have to accept the consequences.”

The church is undergoing a lot of restructuring, including finishing the church addition, Meader said…”When the addition is complete, we will be able to implement the new youth program that we have been working on from the beginning of July. The church is coming together as a family and the congregation is warm and welcoming, a great place to come and worship.”

Meader’s wife is Kandice, and the couple has been together for 31 years.

He has three children: Wesley, Heather and Brennan; and three grandchildren.