Pastor Ron Cont.
Ron was born the 5th child of 6 children and was raised in a quaint, middle class home in nearby Leslie. Ron was the high school football team’s quarterback; he played baseball and was the point guard for the basketball team (which he served as both teams’ captain and also lettered in both sports); and he was on the debate team, where he also lettered and served as team captain. In many ways, Ron compares his role in the church as that of a coach–called to connect people to God, to one another, and to life transforming ministry.
Ron is a graduate of Michigan State University (the only University of Michigan) where he majored in Secondary Education and Minored in Religious Studies. He received his Masters of Divinity from Iliff School of Theology in Denver, Colorado. He discovered that he preferred the lakes and trees of Michigan over the Rocky Mountains of Colorado and returned to the West Michigan Conference in 1985 to begin his pastoral career. He served the Brookfield/Center Eaton, Nashville UMC, Mt. Hope UMC and Lansing Central UMC (all in the Lansing District), the Lawrence UMC and St Paul’s UMC (Kalamazoo District), and the Carson City UMC (Heartland District). He and his wife Penny, look forward to their first appointment in the Albion District.
Ron is the published author of the book A Flint, a Sponge, and a Honeycomb and has been published in two anthologies of wedding and funeral homilies. He has served the District and Conference Evangelism Committees, Conference Town and Country Committee, and is eagerly awaiting a call to be on the District or Conference Board of Ordained Ministry. He is a licensed, national consultant for Natural Church Development. He has also served on hospital boards, city zoning boards, and coached girls and boys basketball for 10 years. Ron was voted the Class C Regional Coach of the year in 1995 and received the 2005 Evangelical Sermon of the Year Award from the conference.
The most important thing to know about Ron is that he and Penny were united in marriage on May 11, 1991, in a beautiful candlelight service, on Ron’s dad’s birthday. She was escorted down the aisle by her two boys, Erich and David Jones, while Ron’s two boys, Rodney and Aaron Brooks served as an usher and ring bearer, respectively. In 1994, this, already blended, family would become super-sized when they became legal guardians of Penny’s sister’s three children. It should be noted that Penny is from Louisiana and, at times, may be considered “spicy.” Oh, and to share one interesting story, they spent their one-year anniversary serving spaghetti dinners at the church’s annual fundraiser. Somehow, despite many other interesting stories, they have remained happily married for almost 23 years now.