About Discovery


13000 Gayton Rd. Henrico, VA 23233 and YouTube.com/discoveryunited and Facebook @discoveryunited.ORG. If you’ve passed the corner of Lauderdale and Gayton a thousand times, you can’t miss the electronic billboard and banners proclaiming the activities of a vibrant and active church campus.


Celebrating over 30 years of ministry in Richmond, Discovery United Methodist Church is leading people to become vital disciples of Jesus in a myriad of ways. Over 800 of your neighbors call us their church home and you could be the next!


Join Discovery Traditions Sunday at 9:00 am and Discovery Modern at 10:30 am. | Wednesday Supper Church at 6:00pm | All service are in-person and live streamed.

Our Staff Team

Meet the leaders of Discovery United Methodist Church.

Rev. Adam Sowder

Rev. Dr. Adam Sowder

Lead Pastor
Adam was appointed as our pastor in July of 2017.   He and his wife Sandy grew up in Blacksburg, VA.  They and their two young sons Teddy and Henry and adult daughter Samantha are an active part of Discovery UMC and love experiencing and exploring the surrounding community.  He is a graduate of Radford University and Wesley Theological Seminary.  He also  studied in Cambridge, England for his doctorate. Adam likes a good book, walks with his dog, bodyboarding and video games.  He’s also the founder and co-host of Methodist Gaming a ministry of presence on Twitch and throughout social media with the tagline “The World is Our Stream.”  His school of thought is the via media.

Rev. Hannah Bryn

Associate Pastor

Hannah is an ordained deacon who was appointed to Discovery in July of 2020. She and her husband, Hunter, grew up in Wilmington, NC and they enjoy exploring Richmond. Hannah graduated from Duke Divinity School in 2019. She seeks to create safe spaces for students to grow in their faith. She also hopes to bridge the church into the local community through mission and service.


Justin Ott



Jean Venner

Church Administrative Assistant
Responsible for the efficient operation of the church office; provides clerical and administrative support to the Senior Pastor, Church Staff, and leaders. Serves as the Membership Secretary, and as a primary communications link with the public.

Cathleen Smith

Financial Secretary


Lorrie Zampetti

Preschool Director

Prior to becoming director, Lorrie taught at KIDS for two decades. Before moving to Virginia, she was the director of a senior center for adults with intellectual disabilities in Rhode Island. Born in NYC, Lorrie grew up in northern NJ where she met her husband, Patrick, in a drum corps. She is a graduate of Ohio University with degrees in Music Therapy and Psychology, has a master’s degree in Education from Averett University, and is working towards her doctorate in Early Childhood Education. Lorrie and Patrick enjoy spending time with their four children, son-in-law, and two grandbabies. She looks forward to working closely with families, staff, and the church community to further develop our play-based preschool program in a safe, loving, and Christian environment.

LeKeisha Ward

Nursery Director

I am originally from Richmond, VA and grew up here most of my life. I received my bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Virginia State University in 2008. Since that time, I have received experience working with children by working in daycares, group homes, schools and most currently as a special education teacher in an elementary school in Henrico. I have two wonderful children of my own. I am looking forward to working as the Nursery Director at Discovery UMC and working with the children and families of the church.

The Mission of The United Methodist Church

“Make Disciples of Jesus Christ for the Transformation of the World.”