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Mark Bye

Mark Bye – Church Treasurer

Mark is a retired US Air Force veteran and continues to work for the Air Force today as an Air Traffic Controller civilian employee.  He earned his Bachelors of Science in Occupational Education degree from Wayland Baptist University and then continued in a Masters of Business Administration program specializing in Financial Management earning his degree in 2003.

Serving in the roll of Treasurer is not new to Mark.  He has served in the position of Treasurer for Prince of Peace Lutheran church in Harvey Michigan and Lord of Life Lutheran church in North Pole Alaska.  Additional Mark served as treasurer for Pioneer Country Emmaus for four years. 

Mark has three grown children and three granddaughters.  His mother also lives in the Oklahoma City area and attends Sunday services with Mark,

Mark’s favorite pastime is woodworking; however God gave him the passion for prison ministry over 20 years ago.  He currently serves in the Kairos Prison Ministry at Davis Correctional Facility (DCF) in Holdenville OK.  Mark is currently the DCF Kairos community leader.

Rev. Michael Burkett, Ph.D.

Rev. Michael Burkett, Ph.D - Senior/Lead Pastor

Our Senior/Lead Pastor, Michael Burkett, was born in Chandler, Oklahoma and raised in the Wellston area.  Michael graduated from OSU with a Bachelor’s in Physics and minor in humanities and religious studies.  He received a Masters of Divinity with honors and a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from Southern Methodist University in Dallas. 

 Michael began pastoring in A Christian Ministry in the National Parks in Zion National Park and then as a Student Pastor in Josephine, Texas.  In 1990 he became a full-time pastor.  He also served for several years as the United Methodist state coordinator for Hispanic Ministries.  From 2008-2012 he served as chair of the Oklahoma United Methodist Board of Ordained Ministry whose task is to lead new pastors into ministry.  

Michael has also lead mission teams to Costa Rica, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Mexico, and for Hurricane Katrina Relief.  He was the founder of a home building mission, Heavener Housing Mission, and the founding pastor for a new church in Heavener, Ok.

Michael was married to his wife, Cathy, in 1989.  Cathy is a speech pathologist at the Cochlear Implant Clinic at Baptist Integris.  They have one son, Matthew, who is soon to graduate from Oklahoma City University and plans on a career in law enforcement.

The greatest privilege in Michael’s life was to receive a call from God that was confirmed by the church to be part of the ministry of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Rev. Dr. Charlotte Teel

Rev. Dr. Charlotte Teel - Associate Pastor & Children's Minister

Charlotte has a passion for children to experience God's beautiful world and find meaning in sharing their gifts. A caring and visionary leader, she has a Doctor of Ministry degree coupled with over thirty years' experience training volunteers, implementing curriculum and guiding children to lead.

During her career, Charlotte has many accomplishments with the Oklahoma Conference of the United Methodist Church. She introduced the rotation method of Christian education, while also providing instructional and administrative leadership for children's ministries.

Charlotte's specialties include Christian education, church music education, and spiritual direction for adults and children.

Courtney Blacksten

Courtney Blacksten - Director of Youth

Courtney grew up attending the First UMC in Sapulpa, OK. She graduated from Oklahoma City University with a BA in Religion/Youth Ministry. After college, Courtney moved to Nashville, TN, and was a graduate resident at the Center for Youth Ministry Training and worked as the Senior High Youth Director at the First Presbyterian Church of Nashville. In 2012, Courtney graduated from Memphis Theological Seminary with a Master of the Arts in Religion with an emphasis in Youth Ministry.

Courtney and her husband, Brandon, live in Hydro, OK, where Brandon is a United Methodist pastor. Courtney spends her free time playing with their puppy Harvey, hiking, traveling and watching Sooner football and Thunder basketball. She also loves all things Disney!

Courtney is passionate about youth ministry and believes that youth are not only the church of tomorrow but are a major part of the church today. She enjoys journeying alongside the youth as they follow in the footsteps of Jesus, sharing where God is present in their lives, and sharing that joy with those she meets along the way.

Cathy Childers

Cathy Childers - Director of Adult Education and Caring Ministries

Cathy graduated from Oklahoma City University with a Masters in Religious Education and from the University of Central Oklahoma with a Bachelors degree in Business Administration.  After her eighteen-year career in the corporate world, Cathy received her call to ministry.  In 2005, she began her second career at Good Shepherd as the first director of the Christ in Action after-school program.  She also served as the Children's Ministry director for several years.

Cathy is an active member of Pioneer Country Emmaus, Christian Education Fellowship, and has also served on many Volunteer in MIssion teams.  She currently resides in Yukon with her husband Alan.  They have two young adult children, Dalton and Carly.

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