For eight years now, the Rev. Ellis Conley has pastored at the First United Methodist Church in Elkins. At the end of this month, however, he will be leaving the church to become part of the Bishops Leadership Cabinet.
Bishop Ernest S. Lyght, resident bishop of the West Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church, selected Conley to serve as superintendent of the Mon Valley District centered in Fairmont.
According to Conley, in this new position, he will be a "pastor to pastors." He will oversee 72 pastors, two campus ministries and two mission projects.
"God has called us to this new ministry," Conley said, adding that he is eager to be able to guide a congregation of pastors.
Conley acknowledges that Elkins is a "great congregation to serve" with "good folks who have been kind." He sad he will "leave with a lot of sadness," but he knows his flock will be well cared for.
In addition to serving as pastor in Elkins, Conley is a member of the Elkins Rotary Club and served on the Randolph County Ambulance Authority board of directors and West Virginia Wesleyan College board of trustees. He helped to organize a concession stand at the end of the Mountain State Forest Festival Grand Feature Parade for marching bands. He organized missions to North Carolina and sent three teams to Northern Ireland.
He and his wife, Julie, also served the community as a teacher of art and photography at Buckhannon-Upshur High School.
Conley will continue to minister in Elkins until June 28. His position will be filled by the Rev. Barry Moll, who is ministering at Morris Memorial United Methodist Church in Charleston.