Manchester United Methodist Church

ESL Classes

Students learn English together in a classroom.

Manchester UMC partners with the Parkway-Rockwood Area Adult Education and Literacy/ESL Program to host ESL and Citizenship classes on site. Benefits of classes include learning English in friendly adult classes where you can work on conversation, pronunciation, grammar, reading, writing, citizenship tests, and American customs.

Learn more about the ESL program:

The Parkway-Rockwood Area Adult Education and Literacy/English as a Second Language Program has been in existence since 1969. We offer free Adult Basic Education and High School Equivalency Test Prep classes as well as English as a Second Language and Citizenship classes. In fiscal year 2016, the Parkway Area Program served almost 1700 adult students, over half of whom were ESL adults. We offer classes in the following school districts: Parkway, Rockwood, Pattonville, Clayton, Ladue, Brentwood, Hazelwood and Maplewood-Richmond Heights. Students do not have to be residents of any of these districts in order to enroll in our classes. Parkway was designated as a STAR Program from the Continuous Quality Improvement review conducted by the Missouri Adult Education and Literacy Section of Department of Elementary and Secondary Education during the fiscal year 2011. We are funded with federal and state monies. The Missouri State Board of Education is responsible for administering our program in cooperation with the local school districts we serve.

Here at Manchester, we host two class sessions daily during the academic year:

Monday-Thursday 9am-12pm

Monday-Thursday 12:30-3:30- focus on Citizenship, English & Conversation

New students are welcome on orientation dates. 

Call 314-415-4940 for orientation information and to sign up for a class.

All Classes are free.

Summer classes are available at other sites; visit the Parkway Schools page to learn more.

To learn more about how you can get involved in this ministry, contact Ministry Leader Susie Lashly.

LEARNING GROUP: Friendship Class

Day: Two Sundays per Month:  9/8, 9/15, 10/6, 10/20, 11/3, 11/17, 12/8, 12/15
Time: 11:00 to Noon
Location: Room 219
Leader: Tracy Marak

Description:  Our Friendship Class is a Sunday school program for members and visitors (high school – adulthood) with developmental delays. While the group is in session, parents of Friendship Class students can attend church on their own or have an hour of personal time here at the church. The group meets every other Sunday, except during Aug., most of Dec., and over holiday weekends, such as New Year’s, Memorial Day, Labor Day, and Thanksgiving. If you are interested in joining this class or becoming a part of the Friendship Class teaching team, please fill out the form below or email Tracy Marak .

For enrollment assistance, please contact Chessey Brenton.

See Also:

Friendship Class

Two Sundays per month, 11 a.m.- Noon (room 219)

Upcoming Sundays:  9/8, 9/15, 10/6, 10/20, 11/3, 11/17, 12/8, 12/15

Manchester UMC’s Friendship Class is a Sunday school program for members and visitors (high school – adulthood) with developmental delays. While the group is in session, parents of Friendship Class students can attend church on their own or have an hour of personal time here at the church. The group is conducted on an every other Sunday basis except during Aug., most of Dec., and over holiday weekends such as New Year’s, Memorial Day, Labor Day, and Thanksgiving. If you are interested in joining this class or becoming a part of the Friendship Class teaching team, please fill out the form below or contact Tracy Marak.

Youth Events, Trips and Activities

Photo of Manchester Youth in front of a white transportation van.

Kickoff 2019

Join us on August 25th from 3-6pm to kickoff the new school year. We will have inflatables, sno cones, and fellowship.

Adults are needed to help set-up and run this event. Email Beth if you are available!

Summer Mission Journeys and Spirit Camp were a huge success!

Thank you to all who attended and volunteered!

Scholarships are available for all trips. Details are in the trip registration links.

Worship Announcement Request

To request a ministry announcement for our Sunday worship services, please complete the form below. Due to the high volume of announcements, all should be submitted at least 1 month in advance for the best likelihood of being included. Any announcements submitted less than 1 week prior to the weekend desired is unlikely to be included. Three Sundays is the maximum per ministry announcement.

If you also wish to have information available at the Information Center, please also complete an Information Center Request form.

Not all requests are guaranteed.

Drama & Arts

Welcome to the Drama and Arts department at Manchester UMC. “The mission of our Drama Ministry is to open the hearts and minds of those we serve through the use of dramatic arts, so that they might hear, understand, and personally identify with the Word of God.”

We provide dramas for worship, meetings, special events, and partner organizations, as well as larger outreach productions. Our group consists of novices to professionals, children to seniors, and our productions consist of everything from one-person monologues to casts of over 100, covering everything from 3 minute Reader’s Theatre scripts, with no memorization or blocking, to full length, professionally staged & choreographed productions. There is a place for everyone!

For more information about any of these groups, please contact Lori Borger.

Acts of Faith

(College/Adult Drama Team) Lori Borger, Team Leader

We cast dramas for worship and major productions from this group, as well as from other drama teams as needed. All are welcome!

Scenic Arts Team

Bill Borger, Dave Gnaegy, & Jason West, Team Leaders

If you’re more comfortable with a hammer and paintbrush than speaking in front of people, you’ll love this creative group! This crew supports our church’s sermon series themes, Vacation Bible School, and other special productions and events. It provides everything from simple props to full scale sets … and, they have a blast doing it, too. We need everyone, from creative artists and engineers, to people who can simply paint a flat, or use a screwdriver. Come join us.

Technical Support Team

Lori Borger, Production Coordinator

We often have a need for crews to provide support with the following: costume construction and assistance, make-up, props, stage crew, backstage assistance, and more. If being a behind-the-scenes member of our Drama Team sounds like your cup of tea, we’d love to have you on our list of contacts!

Faith Movers Liturgical Dance Team

Marilyn Jacober, Choreographer/Director

Dancing and creative movement are powerful expressions of faith and tell stories without words in an artistic and powerful way. Faith Movers is open to anyone 6th grade and up with an interest in expressing their faith through dance!

Lay Readers

If you like public speaking, consider becoming a part of the Lay Reader Team. Lay Readers participate in Saturday and Sunday services by reading Scripture and other components of the worship service.

Weekend Serving Roles

There are so many ways you can get involved and help others at Manchester UMC. Our weekend services provide a wide-range of serving opportunities for all ages, abilities, schedules and preferences. Check out some of the most popular ways to help and make a difference on the weekends. If you’d like help in choosing a serving opportunity, please contact Pastor Jim Peich.

Children’s Ministry

There are a variety of ways you can serve in the Children’s Ministry on Sunday mornings. Whether you’re interested in becoming a Sunday school lead teacher, Sunday school assistant teacher, Welcome Desk leader, PRAYground helper or another role, there’s a place for you to serve. If you’re ready to get started, the first step is to become Safe Sanctuary Certified at Manchester UMC. This is a process that all volunteers go through before they serve with minors or vulnerable adults. If you’re already Safe Sanctuary Certified at Manchester UMC, please contact Chessey Brenton to find a role and schedule that suits you.

Communion Ministry

Holy Communion is celebrated each weekend at the 3:45 and 5 p.m. Saturday worship services. It also typically celebrated the first weekend of the month during the 8, 9:30 and 10 a.m. Sunday worship services. If you’d like to become part of the Communion Team by helping to setup the Communion stations and elements or by helping as a Communion Server, please contact Barbara Bess for more information.

Donuts and Coffee Team

If you’d like to help setup, monitor and clean-up the donuts and coffee made available in Fellowship Hall on Sunday mornings, please contact J.J. Hancock for more information.

Lay Readers

If you like public speaking, consider becoming a part of the Lay Reader Team. Lay Readers participate in Saturday and Sunday services by reading Scripture and other components of the worship service. For more information, please contact Lori Borger.

Modern Worship Team

If you sing or play a musical instrument and enjoy modern Christian music, consider becoming a part of the Modern Worship Team. This group plays during the 9:30 a.m. service on Sunday mornings and during INFUSE Worship Services. If you like to work behind the scenes, consider joining our Stage Crew to help setup and tear down equipment for Modern Worship. To learn more, please contact Kiersten Rose.

Music Programs

Children through senior adults are invited to participate in the Music Program. You may join at any point during the year. The Music Program includes choirs, ensembles, hand bells and other instrumentalists. For more information, please contact Kevin McBeth.


If you like holding babies or helping with toddlers, consider joining our Nursery Team. If you’re ready to get started, the first step is to become Safe Sanctuary Certified at Manchester UMC. This is a process that all volunteers go through before they serve with minors or vulnerable adults. If you’re already Safe Sanctuary Certified at Manchester UMC, please contact Sally Cleveland for more information.

Production Team

If you’re interested in helping with the audio/visual aspects of worship, we’d love to have you join the Production Team. Volunteers help during services by running slides as well as helping with cameras, lights and audio. No experience is necessary! To get started or learn more, please contact Brian Gagliano.

Welcome Team

The Welcome Team of Manchester UMC consists of both greeters and ushers. Greeters welcome and assist people as they come into our building on Sunday mornings to attend worship or classes. If you can smile and say “hello”, becoming an usher might be a great next step for you. Our ushers hand out bulletins and collect the offering during worship. If you’d like to learn more about becoming part of the Welcome Team, please contact Pastor Stephanie Lendt.

Youth Group

The Youth Group of Manchester UMC typically meets on Sunday nights during the school year. Volunteers are needed to help prepare a “snack supper” from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Other volunteer roles include check-in coordinator, large group setup helper, games helper, small group leader, small group substitute and clean-up helpler. If you’re ready to get started, the first step is to become Safe Sanctuary Certified at Manchester UMC. This is a process that all volunteers go through before they serve with minors or vulnerable adults. If you’re already Safe Sanctuary Certified at Manchester UMC, please contact Beth Boemler for more information.

See Also:

Sandwich Ministry

Sandwich Ministry volunteers make sandwiches in an assembly line.

Volunteers at Mancheser United Methodist Church gather every Tuesday morning from 10:00am to 10:45 am in the Fellowship Hall to make and pack sandwiches for our neighbors living on the streets of St. Louis City. Currently, the sandwiches help support the backbone of the feeding ministry at St. Vincent de Paul Parish in the Lafayette Square neighborhood. Through this simple act of service, 120 to 150 people are fed daily. To date, this ministry has made over 100,000 sandwiches!

Volunteers of all ages are welcome to participate in this ministry of mercy. To learn more, contact Ministry Leader Liz Shuburte.

MO-Hab Riders

The 2018 MO-Hab Riders pause for a kick-off photo on the Chain of Rocks Bridge.
The 2018 MO-Hab Riders pause for a kick-off photo on the Chain of Rocks Bridge.

MoHab Bike Ride XXII on Historic Route 66, June 4-9, 2019

The MO-Hab Riders have been bicycling to create awareness and raise fund for Habitat for Humanity, St. Louis since 1998. Each participant in the multi-day fundraising ride is required to raise a minimum of $100 for Habitat for Humanity, St. Louis.

Thanks to the generous financial support and to the hard work of dedicated volunteers, Habitat for Humanity St. Louis recognizes Manchester UMC as a Keystone Community Partner. Over the 22 years of partnership, Manchester UMC has contributed to and worked on many of the 400 Habitat for Humanity homes built in St. Louis City and St. Louis County. These donations of hands, time and finances help deserving home buyers realize their dreams of safe, affordable homes for their families. Click here to learn more about the process for home ownership.

For many years the MO-Hab Riders have completed their fundraising ride across Missouri, mostly on the KATY Trail. Beginning in 2011, the ride has alternated between Missouri’s KATY Trail and the Illinois section of Historic Route 66 on the state’s published bike route that includes very low traffic rural roads and several paved trails.

The 2019 ride will take place on Route 66, starting in Pontiac and returning to St. Louis with the final leg coming across the historic Chain of Rocks Bridge. Due to transportation and support limitations, the ride will be limited to 40 participants.

Sponsor the MO-Hab ride by making a donation to Manchester’s Habitat for Humanity, St. Louis. After clicking the link, select “Habitat for Humanity” from the “Select a Fund” drop-down menu. In the Memo Box, add “MO-Hab Ride” and any rider you would like to sponsor, if applicable.

2019 Ride Information

• Mid March – 2019 Training Ride Schedule is below in the Quick Links for download.
• March 31, 2019. Registration forms and fee due; Registration packet available below in the Quick Links for download. Email Mary Corwin with questions.
• April 22, 2019 at 7 pm – Rider Meeting. Room 141. Hotels payment will be due.
• June 4, 2019 – Meet at MUMC, 8 am. Load bikes and luggage. Travel to Pontiac.
• June 5 – 9, 2019 – MO-Hab Ride XXII – Pontiac, IL to St. Louis, MO

Quick Links

Manchester UMC Consent & Liability Release

Questions? Contact 2019 Ride Leader, Alison Gaffney.

Adult Classes

At Manchester UMC, we offer a variety of classes where you can learn, grow and connect with other people. We divide our adult classes into three types: Core Classes, Special Classes and Disciple Bible Study.

Core Classes

Core Classes are offered several times throughout the year and are a great way to learn more about yourself, our faith and how you can connect and serve here. Learn more about Core Classes.

Special Classes

During our Winter/Spring and Fall semesters, we offer special classes that cover a variety of timely and intriguing topics. Special Classes appeal to a wide variety of audiences. Learn more about Special Classes.

Disciple Bible Study

DISCIPLE is a program of disciplined Bible study aimed at developing strong Christian leaders. The study gives the Old and New Testaments equal time, emphasizing the wholeness of the Bible as a revelation of God. DISCIPLE draws upon the work of scholars, the personal Bible reading and study of the participant, and dynamic group discussion to aid understanding of the Bible. Learn more about Disciple Bible Study.

For more information or assistance in enrolling in an upcoming class, please contact Pastor Jim Peich or Tiffany Conway.

See Also:

Stephen Ministry

Sometimes difficult life situations that come our way such as loss of a job, a serious illness, divorce, loss of a loved one, and more. When they do, the care of a trained Stephen Minister may be just the emotional and spiritual support you need.

What does a Stephen Minister do?

A Stephen Minister provides one-to-one, lay (non-pastoral) Christian care.

One-to-one: A Stephen Minister of the same gender will meet with you privately.

Lay:  Stephen Ministers are not pastors, professional counselors, therapists, or physicians. They are not authorized to give legal, medical, financial, or any advice other than Bible-based encouragement. But, Stephen Ministers are trained and supervised lay volunteers who care.

Christian: Stephen Ministers are Christians who care in the name of Christ. They are willing to talk about spiritual issues but won’t force them.

Care: Stephen Ministers care by listening, supporting, encouraging, praying, being dependable and trustworthy, and maintaining confidentiality.

When is a Stephen Minister needed?

Stephen Ministers can help in five general types of care giving situations:

  1. Crisis care – When people who have just experienced a death in the family, an emergency, the arrest of a loved one, or some other extraordinary event.
  2. Follow-up care – When the crisis is over and everyone else has gone home, Stephen Ministers keep showing up. This often is the most difficult time of adjustment for an individual and the time when having someone compassionate to talk to can make a tremendous difference in moving on with life.
  3. Chronic care – Stephen Ministers are effective at listening to individuals with health conditions that are never likely to improve or that are only likely to deteriorate. Often times these people are slowly forgotten by friends and family and need supplemental care.
  4. Preventive care – Before things become so bad that a crisis develops, Stephen Ministers may be able to help. By serving as a good listener and allowing someone to let off steam, they can help prevent a real explosion at a later time.
  5. Supportive care – Stephen Ministers can support family or loved ones of those who are going through a crisis. Supportive care often greatly facilitates improvement in the person experiencing the crisis.

How does Stephen Ministry work?

Typically, Stephen Ministers meet with individuals for an hour once a week. The relationship lasts for as long as necessary.The decision about how long is made jointly.

If you are interested in talking with a Stephen Minister, or if you believe a Stephen Minister might be able to help a family member or loved one, fill in the form below or contact Rev. Stephanie Lendt at 636.200.4705 or by email.


Stephen Ministers keep personal information confidential. You can feel free to share with your Stephen Minister without worry. However, there are rare occasions such as suicide, homicide, or abuse when a Stephen Minister must share confidential information in order to save a life.


Becoming A Stephen Minister

Stephen Ministers receive over 50 hours of formal training to provide one-to-one care to people experiencing a difficult time. These Christian laypeople come from all walks of life, but what to they have in common? They share in a passion for bringing Christ’s love and care to people during a time of need.
Since 1975, over 600,000 people from more than 11,000 congregations from around the world have been trained as Stephen Ministers. If you’re interested in applying to become a Stephen Minister, email Pastor Stephanie Lendt in our church office.

Mike Clement

Mike Clement and his wife moved to Manchester in 1976. They started attending Manchester UMC in 1977. Over the passage of time, Mike has seen considerable change and growth at the church, including watching his two children grow up and participate in the many opportunities for youth (choir trips, mission trips, classes, and social events). Now two grandkids attend Manchester UMC.

Over those years of membership, Mike has served in leadership positions that include Chairperson of Church Council, Leadership Resource Team, Vision Council, and the Administrative Board. Mike has made multiple mission trips to sites in Mexico and more recently, was part of an August, 2018 district mission trip to Vieques Island, Puerto Rico.

Currently, Mike serves as a Stephen Minister, making weekly hospital visits. Mike is active in the Welcome Team Ministry, serving at the Welcome Center and greeting. Mike has studied in all the Disciple Bible classes and over the years has repeated them. He also attends the Saturday morning men’s Bible Study.

Mike is active in the community, having served as City of Manchester Alderman and now serves as City Mayor. He sits on the city’s Planning & Zoning Commission, and was a founding director of Manchester Arts.

Feeling very blessed, Mike and his wife are the grandparents of seven grandchildren.

Beth Boemler

Director of Youth Ministry

Beth is originally from St. Charles and feels called by God to counsel and minister to youth. She attended college in Springfield, MO and volunteered as a Youth Ministry leader at King’s Way UMC. For six months, Beth had the opportunity to provide interim leadership to their middle-school program during a season of transition. After receiving degrees in Religious Studies and Psychology, Beth and her husband, Kurt, traveled to Texas where she earned a Master’s in Counseling from Texas A&M – Commerce. While in Texas, Beth joined Como UMC and launched their Youth Ministry.

Upon returning to St. Louis in 2010, Beth agreed to serve as the interim Director of Youth Ministries at Manchester UMC. Later, Beth had the opportunity to serve as the Coordinator of Children’s Ministries at Webster Groves Presbyterian Church. In 2012, Beth and Kurt welcomed Ray (a 17-year-old in need of new place to live) into their lives. In 2013, Beth began providing professional therapy to adolescents and families recovering from self-injury and other related mental-health disorders.

In December of 2015, Beth and Kurt joyfully welcomed their daughter Melody and later celebrated her baptism at Manchester UMC. In Nov. 2017, Beth agreed to serve as the interim Director of Youth Ministries again at Manchester UMC. In May 2018, Beth was named the full-time Director.  In addition to her position at Manchester UMC, Beth also provides counseling therapy in private practice.

LGBTQ Reconciling Ministry

“We affirm all persons as equally valuable in the sight of God. We therefore work toward societies in which each person’s value is recognized, maintained, and strengthened.”

-United Methodist Social Principles paragraph 162.

Our Work

The LGBTQ Reconciling Ministries Team is under the umbrella of Manchester UMC’s Social Justice Ministry.  This is a team of laity and clergy who plan and implement Manchester UMC church programs focused on strengthening our welcome and inclusion of all people, especially those in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning community.

Currently our United Methodist doctrine states that homosexuality is not compatible with Christian teaching, so while LGBTQ+ persons can join a UM church, they cannot be ordained or married in the church, per the
Full Book of Discipline Statements.

The following vision and mission statements were approved by the team in Dec. 2015.

Vision: That members of the LGBTQ+ community have the same rights, privileges and respect as all members of Manchester UMC by the year 2020.

Mission: To plan and implement Manchester UMC programs focused on strengthening the welcoming and inclusion of all, especially advocating for the LGBTQ+ community.

If your passion for doing God’s work extends to building relationships, being a change-maker and advocating for others, join the Reconciling Ministry Team!  Our work starts here, but extends beyond our walls to make our world a better place.  To get involved, please contact our reconciling ministry leader Trish Gunby.

Additional Reconciling Communities

As our Welcome Statement asserts, Manchester UMC is an inclusive community welcoming diverse viewpoints. Our church has been organizing educational opportunities and discussions about this issue for almost two years. We are still in the process of discernment as a congregation. Four groups within our church, however, have voted to become reconciling communities:

Alpha Group – Meets Sundays at 9:30 a.m. in room 311.                          Contact Terry Zenser for more info.

Harvest Group – meets Sundays at 9:30 a.m. in room 223.                      Contact Lynn Pate for more info.

Young Adult Ministry – Contact Rev. Winter Hamilton.

LGBTQ+ Family Support Network

If you’re the parent, grandparent or guardian of an LGBTQ+ person(s) and would like to be part of a network of families that supports them in a kind, loving manner, this group is for you. We will share information and experiences. Meetings are monthly in a member’s home. For more info, please contact Dave at 314-614-5473.

You can also “like” the Reconciling United Methodists of the MO Conference’s Facebook page.

Learn More

Board of Church and Society: LGBTQ Rights
In the midst of denominational debates and disagreements over internal polity, the Church remains steadfast in support for laws in civil society that uphold the rights of LGBTQ people.

Click here to learn more!

Become a Reconciling individual!
Click Here to sign the reconciling commitment.  This pledge stats that you choose to join the witness of United Methodists who welcome people of all sexual orientations, and gender identities into the full life of the church.

UMC NEXT Proposal
Read the UMC Next Proposal here
UMC Next holds the following commitments:

  1. We long to be passionate followers of Jesus Christ, committed to a Wesleyan vision of Christianity, anchored in scripture and informed by tradition, experience and reason as we live a life of personal piety and social holiness.
  2. We commit to resist evil, injustice and oppression in all forms and toward all people and build a church which affirms the full participation of all ages, nations, races, classes, cultures, gender identities, sexual orientations, and abilities.
  3. We reject the Traditional Plan approved at General Conference 2019 as inconsistent with the gospel of Jesus Christ and will resist its implementation.
  4. We will work to eliminate discriminatory language and the restrictions and penalties in the Discipline regarding LGBTQ persons. We affirm the sacred worth of LGBTQ persons, celebrate their gifts, and commit to being in ministry together.


How can I find out more at the reconciling movement?

Find out more about Reconciling Ministries.

Program & Class Options

Circle of Friends Preschool serves children ages 1 to 5 through a variety of programming options.

After reviewing our program and class options below, we invite you to schedule a tour to get a feel for our preschool and let us answer any questions you may have.

Four and Five Year Old Classes FOUR & FIVE YEAR OLDS

Our Fours & Fives friends explore reading sight words, journaling daily, addition and subtraction concepts, and use the scientific method.  Our Four & Five Year Old classes emphasize providing the necessary academic, social, emotional, and physical foundation for our students to enter kindergarten confidently and successfully.

Three Year Old ClassesTHREE YEAR OLDS

Our Threes Classes explore literacy, math, and science concepts both independently and collaboratively in fun, meaningful ways. Our Threes friends can often be found helping around the school, caring for our gardens, or delivering special treats to the staff throughout the church.

Two Year Old ClassesTWO YEAR OLDS

Our Two Year Old classes offer students a chance to grow and learn not only socially but academically as well. Our Twos friends continue to practice our social skills, independence, self-help skills, and academic foundations.

One Year Olds


In our One Year Old Classes we emphasize social and emotional growth as much as physical milestones and academics.  Most importantly, our One Year Old Classes class is a chance for our friends to create a positive foundation for a life of learning!

Music and Movement Classes


Every class attends Music and Movement Class every day.
Through our music program, students grow in community, musical knowledge, and personal confidence.
Music unites us and shapes us, especially at Circle of Friends.

Learning Studio


Friends who are 3, 4, or 5 years old are eligible for our extended day called Learning Studio. Through collaborative inquiry-based learning opportunities, our Learning Studio friends delve into topics such as mapping, interviewing, or how different cultures celebrate. Yoga, cooking, art, and music make a regular appearance in our days at Learning Studio.

NEW: BeforeCare & AfterCare

Beginning August 2019!

For families needing care before and/or after school, Manchester UMC offers BeforeCare and AfterCare. Children have time to play and receive a small snack. BeforeCare and AfterCare activities offer your child a chance to socialize with friends, develop skills, and have fun in a safe and familiar setting.

BeforeCare is available for all ages of COF students from 7-9 am. Families may drop off their child anytime between 7-9 am for BeforeCare. Students will be transitioned to their preschool classrooms at the end of BeforeCare.

AfterCare is available for students enrolled in the Threes and Four & Five Year Olds class options. Students will be transitioned from Learning Studio to AfterCare. Families may pick up their child anytime before 6 pm from AfterCare.

Children must be signed up at least a week in advance for BeforeCare and AfterCare.

Learn more about Circle of Friends Preschool

For more information or to schedule a complimentary tour, call 636.394.6867 or email [email protected] today.

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Mary Beth Harper

Mary Beth and her husband, Todd, have been members of Manchester UMC since 2003. Their son, Connor, was born in 2009. Mary Beth grew up in Greenville, Illinois in a Free Methodist Church that was affiliated with Greenville College.

Mary Beth has 25 years of experience working as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in a variety of counseling settings. These include community mental health, foster care, and community-based services working with runaway, homeless, and pregnant adolescents. She has been in private practice since 2008. Mary Beth was an active board member for the Missouri Association of Marriage and Family Therapy from 2012-2018.

Mary Beth has previously served at Manchester UMC on the Staff Parish Committee and Mission Council. She has been a member of the Chancel Choir. She currently leads the Christian Fellowship Class, and assists with various children’s activities.

Chuck Healy

Chuck, his wife Lynne, and their family have attended Manchester UMC since 1999, when they moved to St. Louis from the East Coast. They have three children, Jay, who lives in the Kansas City area with his wife, Becki; Sarah, who lives in the Tower Grove South neighborhood of the city; and Tim, who attends Marquette High School.

Chuck has previously served as the chair of the church Leadership Council, Lay Leader, chair of Staff-Parish Relations Committee, and as a member of the major marketing team. He currently serves as volunteer leader with Manchester Youth, and is a small group leader for Confirmation.

Professionally, Chuck has spent most of his career in publishing. For the past six years, he has been the sales and customer service manager for Liguori Publications, a small religious publisher.

Circle of Friends PALs

Parents As Leaders (PALs) is an opportunity for current Circle of Friends parents to serve as leaders in and provide support to the Circle of Friends community.  PALs will work closely with the Circle of Friends administration and staff to achieve annual goals in order to meet the current and future needs of Circle of Friends Preschool.

Our Circle Of Friends PALs are a great way for families to connect to other COF families and to our school. Whether it is playdates after school at the park, hosting our Kids’ Night Out fundraiser, or finding ways to show our teachers how much we appreciate them throughout the year, our PALs offer opportunities for each interested parent or guardian to connect with our school community.

For more info about PALs or to get connected with our PALs, email [email protected].

Learn more about Circle of Friends Preschool:

For more information or to schedule a complimentary tour, call 636.394.6867 or email [email protected] today. 

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Dana Hockensmith

Dana Hockensmith practiced law for 38 years. He is married to Susan, and they have two daughters, Angela, who lives in Kansas City, and Laura, who is in St. Louis. They have two grandsons.

Dana and Susan came to Manchester United Methodist Church in 1986 from DeSoto, MO, where they were members of St. Andrews Methodist Church. At St. Andrews, he was on the Administrative board, and he and Susan sang in the choir. At Manchester UMC, he has ushered, taught Sunday School, and served on the Pastor/Parish Relations Committee. He has also performed legal services for the church.

For over 40 years, Dana has been active in supporting persons with disabilities. Dana and Susan helped found Pony Bird, Inc., which has 6 homes serving 60 persons with severe disabilities. Their son, Philip, was the first resident. Both continue to serve on the Pony Bird Board of Directors.

Dana served as Co-Chairman of the “Special Ones Campaign” for tax support for persons with disabilities in Jefferson Co., MO. He served as the Chairman of the Board of the Jefferson County Commission For The Handicapped (now the Jefferson County Developmental Disabilities Resource Board), and as Chairman of the Board of the Jefferson County Sheltered Workshop. For a number of years, he represented the Autism Society of America as well as a number of local organizations working with persons with disabilities.

Dana currently assists in managing Lakeside Children’s Academy in Valley Park. He also manages commercial real estate. Visiting with his grandsons and daughter in KC, hiking, biking, playing golf, reading, and traveling with Susan fill his days.

Nick McGeehon

Nick and his wife, Martha, have been attending Manchester UMC since 2010. They live in Chesterfield with their daughter.

Nick is a Partner at Capital Enhancement, Inc., a St. Louis-based political fundraising firm. He has been involved in Missouri and national politics for over a decade working on numerous presidential, gubernatorial, senatorial, congressional, and local campaigns for elected office. He is a graduate of Webster University with a degree in Public Relations.

Nick has served as the Chair of the Generosity Team leading the One Initiative, and has served on the Endowment Committee.

Mission Opportunities

Four volunteers of varying ethnicities touch hands in a team huddle.

Manchester UMC is a church that strives to follow our scriptural calling to serve God by serving our neighbor. Putting our faith into action is a core value that we seek to live out by helping those who are vulnerable and struggling among us. This happens through a variety of missional programs and activities that we plan ourselves and/or partner with others in order to make a positive impact in our community.

Regardless of your age, ability, or experience, we host several opportunities for you to put faith and love into action by becoming the hands and feet of Jesus Christ in our communities, nation, and world. Our missions ministries are diverse and anyone can get involved, no matter your commitment level or time available.

On-Site Missions: These ministries take place at Manchester UMC.

Off-Site Missions: These ministries take place across the greater St. Louis region.

Seasonal Missions: These ministries take place a few times a year.

Ready to Get Started? 

If you’re ready to learn more or participate in a missional opportunity, please reach out to the program leader or email Director of Missions Autumn Dennis and we’ll help you get connected right away!

Leadership Board Documents

Photo of wheat gathered on a wooden background.

Manchester UMC has a very active governing body in its Leadership Board. Here are several documents that will help explain the background, composition, and priorities of the Board.

Background Document

Composition of the Leadership Board

Manchester UMC’s 2021 Plan

2018 Annual Report

Leadership Board Minutes

Here are the minutes from the most recent Leadership Board Meetings:

July 14, 2019

June 2, 2019

May 5, 2019

April 7, 2019

March 10, 2019

February 17, 2019

January 26, 2019

October 14, 2018

September 16, 2018

Social Justice

Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves;
ensure justice for those being crushed.
Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless,
and see that they get justice.

Proverbs 31:8-9 (NLT)

United Methodists have a rich history and concern for social justice. Inspired by Jesus’ ministry to the poor and marginalized, we continue the work of John Wesley, our founder, who advocated for issues such as prison reform, human rights, the end of slavery, labor justice and the humane treatment of animals.

The Social Justice Ministry of Manchester UMC works to create awareness and action that addresses the root causes of injustice in our community and beyond and then uses our influence and voices to change systems for the better.

Under the umbrella of the Social Justice Ministry, there are five ministry teams. The separate ministry groups meet independently and collectively to engage the congregation and surrounding community in learning opportunities, dialogue and offsite action opportunities.

For more information about the social justice work that occurs at the Missouri Conference Level, click here.



The Racial Justice Team hosted The Ethics Project’s Mother 2 Mother panel discussion, January 27, 2019.

Social Justice team members participated in Operation Clean Sweep in the city of St. Louis.

Missouri Conference Social Justice News

At the national and worldwide connectional level, Manchester UMC utilizes resources from the United Methodist Women,  and the United Methodist General Board of Church and Society that is dedicated to the work of living faith, seeking justice, and pursuing peace.  The Church’s specific positions on more than 30 social justice issues can be found online and include the categories of Civil and Human Rights, Economic Justice, Environmental Justice, Health and Wholeness, Peace with Justice and Women and Children

If your passion for doing God’s work extends to building relationships, being a change-maker and advocating for others, join the Social Justice Ministry Team.  Our work starts here, but extends beyond our walls to make our world a better place. 

To get involved, please contact Social Justice Coordinator,

Nicki Reinhardt-Swierk

Advocacy/Social Justice Group Resource List


As United Methodists, we pursue Godly love through faith and action. We learn, grow, and serve God’s purpose in and around our church. We are Unfinished, and continue to create exciting and evolving mission, ministry, and worship for Christ’s work.

Unfinished is our two-year generosity initiative that began in January 2018 and runs through December 2019. With 2018 almost over, we are called to stay strong into 2019 and beyond!

This is your opportunity to help!

Learn more about Unfinished: Called to Stay Strong

Complete the Commitment Card below to make a first-time pledge, affirm a current pledge, increase a current pledge, or add a special pledge. Let’s answer the call to stay strong!


Online or Text

Click below to Give securely to the ministry of Manchester UMC. Jesus taught that our spending priorities reflect what, and whom, we love. By putting God first, we are making a loving investment in a better world, a “kingdom” built around the Holy love of God. Thank you for making a difference through your financial contributions!

Give Online Now

Text Giving Also Available

If you prefer, you may text your gift from any smartphone. Simply text MUMC to 73256 and follow the prompts.

Matt Pasley

Matt Pasley and his wife, Christy, joined Manchester United Methodist Church in 2006 and have one child, Jackson, who is at Fairway Elementary. Heis currently an Accounting Manager at AmerenUE, where he has worked since 2003.

Matt currently serves on the Manchester UMC Finance Committee and, for the past several years, has led the Usher Ministry. In his spare time, he enjoys coaching his son’s basketball and baseball teams.


Manchester UMC has a number of Endowment Funds that help support the ministry of the church. Contributions to these funds are accepted. For more information, please email our Director of Finance.

In addition to the FAQs below, you can read our Guidelines.

What is an endowment fund?

An endowment is a financial asset donated to a nonprofit organization that is designed by the donor to be invested over a long period of time, often in perpetuity. It is governed by instructions that are written or endorsed by the donor. These instructions may specify the amount required to be spent, the charitable purpose or other conditions that must be met if the organization accepts the donation. Most endowments are designed to maintain their purchasing power, and provide income to the beneficiary for charitable purposes for many years. If the donor specifies the purpose for which available funds may be spent, it is called a restricted endowment fund. If no purpose is stated, it is called an unrestricted endowment fund.

How does Manchester UMC determine how much money is available to be spent from the endowment funds?

Some donors specify the amount to be spent. If not, the Endowment Fund Committee determines at the beginning of the year how much is available to be spent during that year.  It bases its determination on historical return on investment and other economic factors that affect the purchasing power of the endowment funds. The Committee Chair notifies the Leadership Board and ministry leaders of the amounts available from each fund.

Which Manchester UMC ministries currently have dedicated endowment funds?

  • Discipleship
  • Contemporary worship and drama
  • Property and facilities (improvements and maintenance)
  • Missions
  • Music
  • Youth
  • Hospitality and new membership
  • Organ (future maintenance and improvements)
  • Seminary scholarships
  • Cemetery

Who approves expenditures from these funds?

Sometimes, the donor’s instructions are explicit, allowing no discretion on how available funds will be spent. For most endowment funds, church and ministry leaders identify ideas that would advance Manchester UMC’s mission and goals and select the priorities to propose for expenditure. Ministry committees and church staff also provide input.  Proposals require approval of the Senior Pastor. They are then submitted to the Endowment Fund Committee, which is responsible for ensuring that any proposed expenditure complies with the intent of the donor of the endowment fund.

How are funds available from the unrestricted endowment fund spent? 

The Leadership Board is responsible for determining how best to use these funds consistent with the mission and goals of Manchester UMC. Currently, the Leadership Board allocates 50% of available funds from the unrestricted endowment fund to maintain and repair of the facility, as determined by the Trustees. The Leadership Board decides how to use of the other 50%.

How do I start an endowment fund?

A donor may make a statement of intent to donate a minimum of $2,500 and submit it to the Endowment Fund Committee with a written request to establish an endowment fund for a specific purpose other than one previously established.  If approved, funds less than $20,000 will be treated as part of the unrestricted endowment fund until the total of donations for the stated purpose total at least $20,000.

Can I give money to an existing endowment fund?

Yes, if you are in agreement with the stated purpose and conditions of that fund, you may designate a donation to be added to it.

For more information, email our Director of Finance.