About Morrow FUMC

Mission Statement

Morrow First United Methodist Church is a community of faith with a passion for Jesus Christ and all people through an active ministry of intentional and authentic evangelsim that glorifies God’s call for th church’s future. This passion is demonistrated through active Worship, Witness, Giving, Serving, Teaching and Study. 
The mission of the United Methodist is to make disciples of Jesus Christ through the transformation of the world.
It is enacted by:
  • Striving to win souls for Christ;
  • Providing help to those in need;
  • Promoting Christian Fellowship           
 All activities of Morrow First United Methodist Church are dedicated to the glory of God under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Our Staff

Rev. Dr. Karen Lyons

Rev. Dr. Karen Lyons

Senior Pastor

Rev. Dr. Karen Lyons was appointed to Morrow First UMC in June 2019. She received her Doctor of Ministry Degree from Gammon Theological Seminary in May 2017. Her dissertation was entitled, “Multiculturalism and Collaborative Partnerships.” She received her Master of Divinity degree in May 2003 from Emory University, Candler School of Theology, and also Certification in Christian Education. Pastor Karen has extensive training in Clinical Pastoral Education and Care, working as a Chaplain Intern at Metro State Prison for over 6 years and serving as a Chaplain Intern at Southern Regional and a Chaplain Resident at Grady Hospital. She gained extensive experience in the corporate world in banking and in various church ministries before answering her call in 1999.

Pastor Karen was Ordained as an Elder in Full Connection in June 2010. Previous church appointments include serving as Senior Pastor of Cliftondale U.M.C. for nine years, serving as Associate Pastor of St. James U.M.C. in Alpharetta,Ga. in June 2013 for one year and serving as Senior Pastor at Clarkston U.M.C. for five years. One of her treasured scriptures is Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. Acknowledge him in all your ways and he will direct your path.”

Pastor Karen has traveled around the world and continues to love traveling, meeting people and learning about diverse cultures, networking, reading and gardening. She has been married 37 years to Dr. Ralph C. Lyons, a Gastroenterologist in Riverdale, Georgia. They have two daughters, Christine and Jeanne. She serves on the Board of Ordained Ministry, the a two year ACE square Clergy support group and is Chair of the North Georgia Clergy Eight Year Assessment Committee. 

Cora Johnson

Cora Johnson

Office Administrator

Cora has worked as an Administrative/Office Assistant for the last 20 years with organizations such as Clayton State University, Morrow and Community Gardens of Henry County, McDonough. 

Her family church is Bethel UMC in Stockbridge.Ga.

Cora is a member of Turning Point Church in McDonough where she serves on the Dream Team, Hospitality Team, Events Team and as the DT Training and Development Point Leader.  As a small group leader at TPC, Cora teaches Tech Assist,a computer and technology class focusing on MS Office, Google Drive, and overcoming the fear of technology.  Cora loves in her spare time to read sci-fi and fantasy novels and tutor people who need computer or social media assistance.

Becky Griffin

Becky Griffin

Financial Secretary

Becky Mitchell Griffin grew up in Morrow. She and her family have belonged to the church for many years. She joined the church in 1966 through the confirmation class. She married Mike Griffin in 1977. Mike joined the church and was baptized the same year they were married. They have two sons, Mitchell and Nicholas. Mitchell lives in Morrow and works for Clayton County Fire Department. Nicholas married Joanna Richter in 2009 and is an Art Teacher, and they live in College Park.

Through the years Becky has been involved in many positions on various committees of the church in addition to working with the youth. She currently sings in the choir, is a member of the Bridge Builders Sunday School Class, is a member of the Electa Ladies share group, is the treasurer of the UMW, and serves as the Mission Team leader which involves serving on several committees.

Becky enjoys playing tennis and doing some cross fit work outs. Her favorite activities outside of the church include making memories at Lake Hartwell with her family and friends. Her job at the church involves making the weekly bank deposits, posting contributions, payroll and bill paying for the church. She keeps the records for four bank accounts and supplies monthly financial reports for the Finance Committee and sends out quarterly and the yearly contribution statements.

Don Davis

Don Davis

Director of Music Ministries

Don is currently the Music Director at Morrow First United Methodist Church. He has 37 years of experience as a choral conductor. He owned and operated Harmonies Music, a retail and education business for 14 years – in the process, meeting his wife, Jackie.


Previous experience includes working as music director at both Gainesville First United Methodist and Fayetteville First United Methodist Church. He also served as a staff vocal teacher at Brenau University music department and preparatory school. Don has been a tenor soloist with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and was a member for 11 years of both the Atlanta Symphony Chorus and the Atlanta Symphony Chamber Chorus, conducted by the great Robert Shaw.


Don continues to work creating and producing rehearsal/training media for the Georgia Music Educators Association including All-State and various Honor Choruses. He also works part-time at Soundaround Audio Video as an audio recording technician and cameraman.

Jackie Davis

Jackie Davis

Church Accompanist

Jackie returns to Morrow First United Methodist Church as Church in February 2005. Previously, she served as church accompanist from 1984 to 1998.

Jackie has been a member of Morrow First United Methodist Church since 1987. She has a Masters Degree in Music with a concentration in Piano Pedagogy. Jackie and her husband, Don have two children, Casey and Luke. She has taught many piano students in private and studio settings and continues to share her talent with us, her church family. Jackie and her husband are the parents of two young adults and have one granddaughter.

Tracey Holland

Tracey Holland


Tracy Holland has served as part-time custodian at Morrow First United Methodist Church for over 20 years. He served for four years from 1988-1992 and for 15 years from 1998-2013. He returned in January 2015 as part-time custodian at MFUMC.

He has been a full-time custodian for both Clayton County Public Schools and the Henry County Board of Education since 1983. Currently, he is at Arnold Elementary School in Clayton County where he has been Custodian for two years.

Tracy is active in his church and enjoys his hobbies, which include football, basketball, bowling, and pool.

Tracy and his wife Susan reside in Jonesboro, Ga. He is a member of Three Point Bible Church in Jonesboro, Ga.

Jamie Bales


Jamie Bales and her assistants prepare and serve a variety of meals for Wednesday Night Fellowship Hour and for other special meetings held at the church.

Our History

Church History
  • 1800’s:
  • 1865 Brush Arbor – served by circuit and lay preachers. Named “Arbor Place”
  • 1870 Williams Chapel Methodist Episcopal Church built
  • 1881 Williams Chapel replaced by white frame building
  • 1900’s:
  • 1930 Erected brick building on Old Rex Morrow Road. Renamed, “Morrow Methodist Church”
  • 1967 Present building completed. Named, “Morrow United Methodist Church” in 1968
  • 1969 Fellowship Hall Built
  • 1973 Added an Education Wing and expanded the parking lot
  • 1997 Stained glass windows installed in the sanctuary. Major renovations made to church grounds and facilities
  • 2000’s:
  • 2000 Name changed to “Morrow First United Methodist Church, Inc.”
  • 2000 Storage room added to Fellowship Hall
  • 2006 Began a two-phase investment plan to Retain Sacred Valuable Property (RSVP), our inherited responsibility to maintain our buildings and grounds for posterity.
  • 2008 and beyond:
  • To fulfill the first words of the church’s Mission Statement: “Morrow First United Methodist Church is a community of faith with a passion for Jesus Christ and all people” through a ministry of intentional and authentic evangelism that glorifies God’s call for the church’s future.”
Pastors of Morrow First UMC
1929-1929          Rev. H. Harold Dillard
1941-1944          Rev. William A. Tyson, Jr.
1944-1945          Rev. Charles l. middlebrook
1945-1947          Rev. Peden Gene Curry
1949-1951          Rev. R. Neal Windom
1951-1952          Rev. Lloyd W. Jackson
1952-1953          Rev.  Clyde A. Blackstock
1955-1957          Rev. Charles J. Grilhe
1957-1962          Rev. Ray Melear
1962-1963          Rev. James M. Varner
1963-1964          Rev. Louie F. Huckaby
1964-1970          Rev. D. Randall Williamson
1968-1970          Rev. Dr. J. Mike Cordle
1970-1974          Rev. Emory R. Brackman
1972-1977          Rev. Odelle C. Jordon
1974-1977          Rev. Orian J. Hunt and William R. Childs (Minister of Youth)
1977                   Rev. C. Dean Milford and David B. Jones (Assoiciate Minister) 
1980-1982          Rev. E. Fredrick Maeser, Jr. (Associate Minister) 
1982-1987          Rev. Dr. Eugene T. Drinkard
1987-1991          Rev. J. Sanford McDonald
1985-1988          Rev. Trinka Kittle (Minister of Education)
1988-1989          Rev. Trinka Kittle (Associate Minister) 
1989-1991          Rev. William F. Thomas ll (Associate Pastor)
1991-1995          Rev. M. Wayne Fears, Sr.
1995-1998          Rev. Jim Higgins
1997-1998          Rev. Steve Chenoweth (Minister of Youth and Visitation)
1996-2000          Rev. Jim Welch (Associate Pastor)
1998-2001          Rev. Mac Paterson
2001-2007          Bill Jackson
2007-2015          Rev. Dr. Ed Judy
2015-2019          Rev. Luis Ortiz
2019-Present      Rev. Dr. Karen Lyons
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5985 Jonesboro Rd
Morrow, GA 30260

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Sundays at 11:00am