Weddings at First Methodist will always be performed by one of the clergy on staff at the church. A pastor from another Methodist church or other denomination may assist in the ceremony, but the First Methodist clergy will be in charge of the service. Requests for the addition of a guest pastor should be made well in advance of the wedding date to the wedding coordinator, who will get approval from the officiating clergy.
Bill is a local pastor assigned by the Texas Annual Conference to First United Methodist Church Houston. He attended Texas A&M University and then received a Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Mississippi. He practiced pediatrics and pediatric nephrology and taught for the Texas A&M University College of Medicine for many years. A lifelong Methodist lay volunteer Bill has served the church in numerous ministry roles. He teaches the Logos Sunday School class, is a Stephen Minister, Lifeline volunteer, and a small group leader. He is married to Pattie and between them they have four children and ten grandchildren. Bill enjoys bird watching, reading, hiking, playing with his grandchildren, and working at the church.
Rev. Kaitlyn Bowie Hankins
Kaitlyn spent the first twenty-two years of her life in the Midwest (Wisconsin, Illinois, & Iowa). Those years were spent with her immediate and extended family and also included her church family at the local Baptist “Brick” Church where she encountered Christ for the first time and began her journey of discipleship. Following completion of her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education, she moved to Houston and taught 3rd grade/ESL in Aldine ISD, on the north side of the city for four years. During her summers, Kaitlyn volunteered with the college ministry at the United Methodist church she belonged to in The Woodlands and experienced an overwhelming call into ministry that had begun in high school.
Following God, she moved to North Carolina to attend Duke Divinity School where she completed her theological education while serving as a Graduate Resident to first year students. She returned to Houston and was commissioned as an Elder in the United Methodist Church in May 2014. She was appointed to serve at First UMC in June, and is specifically serving as Lead Pastor for The Source, our contemporary worshipping community here. Her experience with diverse communities through public education, mission projects, and college student development, will serve her well in her role of pastoring and reaching out to the incredible city of Houston.
Rev. Ken Coneby
A born and raised Texan, Ken Coneby has a heart for bringing people together. Finding his call to Ministry during college, he went on to be a Director for both a Youth and College ministry before coming to First Methodist Houston and The Source to serve as an associate Pastor. Always available to grab coffee or lunch Ken loves connecting with people. His passion is living out the biblical community lined out in Roman’s 12 and 1 Corinthians 12/13; connecting with God, lifting one another up through encouragement and support, and loving the world around us. Ken seeks to live out this calling at our church by connecting others in our Small Group Ministry and reaching out to others with events like our Food Truck Friday.
Rev. Brandi Horton
Brandi is a lifelong Methodist and a native Texan. She grew up in a small town in northeast Texas and attended Hallsville First United Methodist Church with her family.
After high school, Brandiattended Texas A&M University and graduated with a B.A. in English and Political Science. Brandi first experienced a call to ministry while in college. This call was confirmed by further experience of the local church through the Texas Annual Conference College Pastoral Internship Program (CPIP) at Cypress Trails United Methodist Church in Spring, Texas and interning at A&M United Methodist Church in College Station, Texas.
Brandi attended Duke University Divinity School. While at Duke, her love for the local church continued to grow as she engaged in ministry with both large and small congregations. Brandi interned at Church Street United Methodist Church in Knoxville, Tennessee, Union Grove United Methodist Church in Hillsborough, North Carolina, and reVision Ministries in Houston, Texas. She also completed a unit of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) at Duke Hospital.
At Duke, Brandi met and married David Horton, who is also a United Methodist pastor. They moved to Houston following graduation to serve churches in the Texas Annual Conference. Brandi served Deer Park United Methodist Church as an associate pastor prior to being appointed to First Methodist in July 2016. David currently serves St. Luke’s United Methodist Church as the pastor of the Gethsemane Campus in southwest Houston. They were both ordained as elders in May 2016.
Rev. Andy Nixon
For the last 22 years, Rev. Andy Nixon has served as a pastor in the United Methodist Church. Raised in a very good, but not Christian household, Andy came to faith when he was a junior at Washington Lee University. In the wake of his conversion, he sought to quickly learn more about the Christian faith. A series of events led Andy to Yale Divinity School, where he made a decision to start the ordination process and serve the United Methodist Church upon graduating in 1994.
The academic side of faith has always been an interest of Rev. Nixon. While a student at Washington and Lee he graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. in Political Science. Then, while at Yale, Rev. Nixon earned the Henry Hallam Tweedy prize as the student most likely to succeed in parish ministry. Today the intellectual curiosity for the Christian faith is further made known in writing projects. Andy has authored articles in Good News Magazine, co-wrote a chapter of The Wesleyan Way, and was a principle author of the Advent Bible study Under Wrapspublished by Abingdon Press. He currently has a manuscript submitted to Abingdon on the parables of Jesus and is self-publishing a book, Jesus vs. Zombies – Don’t Be the Living Dead due out later this year.
Not growing up in the Christian faith influenced all of Rev. Nixon’s ministry. From his first appointment in Northwest Arkansas the churches he has served have grown by reaching people who did not know Jesus. In his first appointment his church grew to where it could support a full-time pastor after being a two-point charge. At First United Methodist of Jonesboro, Arkansas, he preached weekly in contemporary and traditional services while leading evangelism efforts. At First United Methodist Church of Maumelle, Arkansas, attendance and finances quadrupled during the six years he served as Senior Pastor. Most recently, at The Woodlands United Methodist Church he grew The Loft – a contemporary service to an attendance of 1600, many of whom had no relationship with Jesus prior to coming to The Loft.
For the last two years, Rev. Nixon has led a nonprofit, RockTheWord, which has assisted Kingdom-minded nonprofits and churches in fundraising efforts. In the last year, RockTheWord, engaged in $11 million worth of projects ranging from orphanages in Guatemala to consulting with United Methodist congregations wanting to grow.
Today, Rev. Nixon is eager to begin a new chapter of ministry at First United Methodist, Houston. Over the last 22 years he has learned that the church can reach people for Jesus through any ministry. Over his career he has tried to embody Paul’s attempt to be all things to all people. A desire he hopes is not founded in arrogance, but in the genuine desire to reach people with the message of Jesus Christ. Rev. Nixon was blessed to find United Methodist churches preaching the gospel when he was being called, and he seeks in his ministry to help churches proclaim the same message to those being called today.
Rev. Nixon is married to Deborah – 23 years – and they have two children, Anna (20) and Noah (17). Anna is a nursing major at The University of Mary-Hardin Baylor and Noah is a junior at The Woodlands High School.
Rev. Ann Spears
Ann grew up in a South Charleston, West Virginia, and graduated with a B.A. in Language Arts- English, Speech and Journalism and Secondary Education from the University of Charleston, which was originally founded as a private Methodist College. It was in that place that Ann’s journey with Christ began with her extended family and friends. Ann moved to Houston in the summer of 1970 and immediately began to work in the public school.
After a long and joyful career in public education and school public relations, Ann heard the overwhelming call to ordained ministry. To be obedient and to answer that call, Perkins School of Theology and Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary were the schools she attended for her theological education. Ann came to First Methodist Houston in January of 1997 and was ordained a Deacon in the Texas Annual Conference in May of 2010. Ann has a deep passion for the people of Haiti and she has led mission trips there for the past eight years. Additionally, her love for the local church, a love she has had since a child, keeps growing. Seeing the challenges ahead keeps motivating her to help do all she can to strengthen the church at all levels. Ann also serves as Chair of the Ordained Deacons for the Texas Annual Conference and is on the Board of Ordained Ministry. Ann is married to Max and they have five adult children and 12 grandchildren.