PALM HARBOR UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
MEET THE PASTOR
Interim Senior Pastor:
Rev. Dr. Sharon Patch
About Pastor Sharon:
Sharon felt God’s calling into the ordained ministry following several years in youth and family ministries. She received her bachelor’s degree from USF and her Masters of Divinity from Duke Theological Seminary. She earned a doctorate in Preaching in Pastoral Care from Louisville Presbyterian Seminary.
She served churches in Jacksonville and Oldsmar before being invited by Bishop Henderson to become the Superintendent of the Ft. Myers District. Following her stint as District Superintendent, she served as Senior Pastor at First United Methodist in Clearwater.
Following her husband Jim’s death in 2013 she moved to Westlake Village and lives in a villa directly behind the church.
Sharon has one son and three daughters, one grandson and five granddaughters, and five great-granddaughters.
She loves sports and is an avid Duke basketball fan, a Tampa Bay Rays fan, and has her own fantasy baseball team. She enjoys reading and spending time with family.
Shared By Sharon
Each week, Pastor Sharon writes an e-mail to the congregation that provides information about things happening in the church and information related to her messages.
Read Pastor Sharon's weekly e-mail, by clicking on this link: Shared By Sharon
All Ages! All In! Loving God! Loving All!
Palm Harbor UMC is an intergenerational community called to a life changing relationship with Jesus Christ and committed to loving God and loving others.
To live fully into this purpose we will follow these discipleship practices:
To Gather God’s people for worship
To Grow disciples of Jesus Christ
To Go forth to serve the community and the world
PHUMC Core Values
Christ Centered- I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. (John 15:5)
Intergenerational- One generation commends your works to another; they tell of your mighty acts. (Psalm 145:4)
Hospitality- "The King will reply, Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me." (Matthew 25:40)
Service- Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God's people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. (Ephesians 4:11-12)
Excellence- Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters. (Colossians 3:23)
Life-long learning- I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:14)
All Ages, All In
Well over 100 years ago Palm Harbor United Methodist Church began……
Its roots go back to Florida Southern College, a Methodist College in Leesburg governed by the Florida Conference. In 1902 the college made a decision to move from Leesburg to Sutherland, Florida (the community of Sutherland was renamed Palm Harbor in 1925).
For 19 years church services were held at the school. In 1921 a fire destroyed most of the facilities of the college and Florida Southern College relocated to Lakeland. With a vision of wanting to continue meeting as a church, members met in the school’s undamaged gymnasium. They organized the construction of a new sanctuary. Hand cleaned bricks from the fire-damaged building were used as part of the structure that would become known as “The White Chapel.” Services began in “The White Chapel” in 1925.
In 1965 members recognized the need for a larger sanctuary. A building fund was started, land was donated, and building began. On November 14, 1971 the first service was held in the new sanctuary at the Michigan Avenue site.
At this downtown site the ministries of The Robin’s Nest (our Preschool Ministry) began in 1983. In 1987 our before and after school ministry, Stars & Comets began... and of course Camp CUBBER began in 1992.
In 1985 the congregation agreed to purchase 7.25 acres of property on 21st street near Westlake Blvd. Purchase price of the property was $342,000. They had dreams of a new church costing $2 million. In 1995 worship began at the site on which we currently sit. For over 10 years the church worship was held in what is now our Multi-Purpose Room / Gymnasium.
An Education wing was added and Westlake Christian School began in 1995 (now Kindergarten through 8th grade).
In September 2003 the first worship service was held in our current sanctuary, with a seating capacity of over 1700.
What started as “Yesterday's Vision” became “Today's Reality.” And with Today’s Reality we now focus on our future and God’s vision for ministry and mission.