Mueller 2nd bishop elected by SCJWritten by Karla Abernethy-Thetford Thursday, 19 July 2012 19:09
The Rev. Gary E. Mueller, senior pastor of First United Methodist Church in Plano, Texas, has been elected as a United Methodist bishop by delegates at the South Central Jurisdictional Conference.
Mueller was elected at 7:55 p.m. Thursday, July 19, at the jurisdiction’s quadrennial meeting in downtown Oklahoma City on the 11th ballot, he received170 votes. A total of 152 votes were needed for election.
Mueller was the second bishop elected by the 256 delegates, an equal number of United Methodist clergy and laity, from the eight states that form the South Central Jurisdiction. The assignments of bishops in the South Central Jurisdiction for the next four years will be announced later in the week. His four-year term of service begins Sept. 1.
Mueller, nominated by the North Texas Annual (regional) Conference and endorsed by the North Texas jurisdictional delegation and South Central Black Methodists for Church Renewal, has helped his Plano congregation from an average weekly attendance of 760 in 2001 to 1,265 in 2010. He presently serves as chair of the conference’s board of ordained ministry and previously was chair of the North Texas Conference Ministry Center Building Committee. He was a delegate to the 2012 General Conference, where he successfully put forth the “Mueller Amendment,” which create oversight of the appointment process with the end of guaranteed full-time appointments for ordained elders.
He first got involved with The United Methodist Church as a high school student in Pittsburg, Kan. His previous appointments include time as an associate and later executive pastor of First United Methodist Church in Richardson, Texas. Since then, he has been pastor of Brewster Memorial United Methodist Church, McKenzie Memorial United Methodist Church, First United Methodist Church Roanoke-Trophy Club-Westlake and First United Methodist Church in Denton. He also previously served as director of the North Texas Council on Ministries.
He is a graduate of Southern Methodist University’s Perkins School of Theology.
A consecration service will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, July 21, at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church in Oklahoma City. The ceremony can be watched live at the South Central Jurisdiction’s website (http://scj.umportal.org/main/article.asp?id=8808).