Pastor Dick Kretchmar
Pastor Dick has been our Minister for the Birmingham Church Family since 2008. He finally answered the “call” after a successful career in business, teaching and coaching. He grew up in Oberlin and married his High School sweetheart Lorna in 1969. After graduating from Valparaiso University in 1970, and attending Graduate School at Kent State, and Portland State University, Dick accepted the Associate Professor position at Concordia College Their first Son, Lawrence was born in Portland, Oregon as Dick was teaching Geography and coaching the men's basketball team at Concordia. After four years, and another son, Bob’s birth, the Kretchmar family moved to Texas, and enjoyed the Lone Stars BBQ and hospitality until returning “HOME” to Oberlin in 1977; where their third and “last-best” son Steve was born.
After 20 plus years in various Sales/Marketing Management positions, including National Marketing Mgr. for a Cleveland plastics molding company, Pastor Dick began his “Pastoral Journey” which brought him to the East Ohio Conference, Firelands District, of the United Methodist Church and a Full time Local Pastor position at BUMC.
“I have never been happier, doing God’s work in the “outfield” of Northern Ohio, as in these last few years filled with “His Good News” for our family of faithful followers as we fellowship together right here on South Street."
David Howat has been serving as organist since 1988, and has been
the full-time organist since September of 2003.
David also serves as organist at Lakeview UMC in Berlin Heights, and Saturday Mass organist at Holy Mary Catholic Church in Lorain. He has also served as organist at Park Ave UMC in Amherst, Henrietta UMC, and has played at the Palace Theatre in Lorain on numerous occasions.
David currently holds a Bachelor of Education degree in Language Arts from Ashland University, and a Graduate Diploma in organ performance from Bowling Green State University.
His primary teachers have been Mary Louise Smith, Dr. Timothy Guenther, and Dr. Vernon Wolcott.
Our church Choir is a very valuable part of our ministry and community out reach for the Birmingham UMC family. The choir consists of 16-20 members who are dedicated to lifting their voices and our spirits each and every Sunday morning. We are quite blessed because of the generous Otto Schoepfle Music Foundation Fund which allows us to include 10 or more Oberlin College students who supplement our own members and provide for a marvelous music ministry each week.