1983 - Present
Discovery 40 Years Celebration Message
Founded by Dr. Jim and Avis Lavender in 1983, Discovery United Methodist Church has always been a place for people to gather for worship, relationships, and community. The first services took place in a vast field, sometimes on hay bails or under a tent, then we moved into a trailer, and now, we are in our beautifully modern yet traditional sanctuary. Whether it be the field where we first invited neighbors for ice cream under pine trees or standing beneath the iconic steeple today serving hot dogs to neighbors, Discovery has never stopped serving people and living out our mission. As we grow, we remain steadfast to our mission to reach the poor and the poor in spirit with the Good News of Jesus Christ.
When Dr. Jim Lavender retired in 2016, Rev. Ed. Pruit served as the interim pastor for a time, until July 2017, when Rev. Dr. J. Adam Sowder was appointed as the lead pastor of Discovery. Adam brought with him the vision of Worship, Relationships, and Community, and a season of spiritual and physical plant revitalization. Under his leadership, Discovery is now mortgage-free and is partnering with the community and digital world around us more than ever.
The church continues to innovate its way to be a source of relevance in the greater Richmond region and worldwide with a commitment to faithfully follow the Wesleyan Traditions and Beliefs.
Our talented clergy team members from the past also include Rev. Dean Pittman, Rev. Jay Carey, Rev. Sandra Bottoms, Rev. Pam Anderson, and Rev. Hannah Bryn.
Discover how to be a part of our mission of making discipleships of Jesus Christ for the transformation of our world.