|Rev. Portia Cavitt||Rev. Dr. January Kiefer||Bishop Scott Jones|
By Lisa Diehl, Kansas Area communications director
Rev. Portia Cavitt, an elder in the Nebraska Annual Conference, will preach at the Opening Worship Service June 6. She is a strong advocate for children, education, justice and community involvement. A native of Little Rock, Ark., Cavitt was raised in St. Louis, Mo. She is a graduate of Wilberforce University with a bachelor of arts in Liberal Studies, and the Interdenominational Theological Center (Turner Theological Seminary) with a master of divinity in pastoral care and counseling.
Cavitt has served A.M.E. congregations in Missouri, San Francisco, Seattle, Hutchinson, Kan., St. Louis and South Omaha, Neb. Cavitt currently serves as pastor of Clair Memorial United Methodist Church in North Omaha, where she was appointed in 2008.
Cavitt is an active volunteer. She participates with the IMA, Alliance of Clergy Women, Methodist Fellowship and the Mayor's Clergy Advisory Board in Omaha. She is a youth mentor and supervises juveniles for community service, a certified HIV/AIDS instructor with the American Red Cross, a member of the HIV/AIDS Community Planning Group, and works with various committees and community organizations within the city.
Rev. Dr. January Kiefer will preach at the Memorial Service June 7AT 7 p.m. Kiefer is the pastor at LaCygne and New Lancaster United Methodist churches.
Kiefer is the daughter of first-generation immigrants. Her father came to the United States by way of Germany and Honduras. Her mother grew up on the Caribbean island of Jamaica. She was raised a Christian Scientist in Vienna, Austria. Though she always identified herself as “spiritual,” Kiefer resisted Christianity until a conversion experience in the African Methodist Episcopal Church. She was ordained by the AME church in 2000 and served churches in Missouri and Kansas before transferring to the United Methodist Church.
Before answering the call to ministry, Kiefer was an art teacher. She also founded her own company, StoryPerformances Inc., and traveled nationwide presenting storytelling and theatrical performances on such issues as race relations, child abuse and neglect and HIV/AIDS.
Bishop Scott Jones will preach at the Sending Forth Service June 9 at 11 a.m. Jones was ordained deacon in the Kansas East Conference of the United Methodist Church in 1978 and ordained elder in 1987 in the North Texas Conference. On July 16, 2004, he was elected bishop and consecrated on July 17, 2004, at the South Central Jurisdictional Conference. He was assigned to serve as the resident bishop of the Kansas Area as of Sept. 1, 2004.
Jones enjoys golfing and bike riding whenever he has the chance and will be participating in both the Bishop’s Bicycle Challenge for United Methodist Open Door and the NUMB (Nebraska United Methodist Bike Ride for Hunger) in June.
The keynote speakers will be Rev. Cynthia Harvey, deputy general secretary of the United Methodist Committee on Relief and the General Board of Global Ministries, and Rev. Dr. G. Scott Morris, founder of the Church Health Center in Memphis, Tenn. See the article, UMCOR official, Church Health Center founder named keynote speakers for 2012 Annual Conference, for more information about the keynote speakers.