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Picayune native elected Bishop for Methodist Church's Southeastern Jurisdiction

United Methodist News - Press Release

Mississippi’s district superintendent for the United Methodist Church and the former pastor for Galloway Methodist Church in Jackson has been elected as Bishop for the church’s Southeastern Jurisdictional Conference.

Connie Mitchell Shelton was elected on Wednesday at the conference meeting at Lake Junaluska, North Carolina. She received 213 of 350 votes cast.

Shelton, 58, was elected from the nine states forming the Southeastern Jurisdiction. In the United States, bishops are elected to serve for life.

According to a press release from the United Methodist Church, Shelton was the endorsed candidate of the Southeastern Jurisdiction Clergywomen’s Caucus and was supported by the Mississippi delegation to General Conference and the jurisdictional conference.

A native of Picayune, Shelton was raised as a Southern Baptist. She later found that Methodist theology better resonated in her life. She then joined Oak Grove United Methodist Church in Hattiesburg, where she and her husband, Joey, served as volunteer lay youth directors. Eventually, both she and her husband discerned a call to full-time ordained ministry. Joey is the dean of the chapel and director of church relations at Millsaps College. They have two adult daughters, Bailey and Jessica.

She has a bachelor’s degree in radio, television and film and a master’s in public relations, both from the University of Southern Mississippi. But after accepting the call, she and her husband sold everything and moved to Durham, North Carolina, to study at Duke Divinity School.

From 2008 to 2015, Shelton served at Galloway Methodist Church across the street from the state Capitol in Jackson.

Since 2015, she has been superintendent and missional strategist of the East Jackson District in the Mississippi Conference. Since July, she also has served on a team of four superintendents overseeing the Hattiesburg District.

She previously served as director of connectional ministries and communications for the Mississippi Conference. Before that, she served in appointments at both rural and urban United Methodist churches. She also was executive director of “The United Methodist Hour” television and radio broadcast, which reached across the Southeastern United States.

The Methodist Churches for Picayune are excited to announce that she will be visiting the Picayune area this weekend. She will be preaching on December 4, 2022 at First United Methodist Church on Haugh Avenue at the 10:30 service.

All of Bishop Shelton’s friends and family are invited to attend this glorious celebration. In addition, a reception honoring Bishop Shelton will be hosted at Trinity United Methodist Church from 2:00 until 4:00.


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