Growing up close to the ministry - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Community Focus

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Growing up close to the ministry

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Posted: Tuesday, August 21, 2012 2:19 pm

Desert Foothills United Methodist’s new pastor is no stranger to the Valley or to ministry.

The Rev. Mike Kerr-Osman grew up in Mesa, the son of a pastor. He says growing up, and especially watching his dad as a minister, he never thought it was something he would become.

“I had an intimate understanding of the ministry,” Kerr-Osman said.

He went to college for an English degree, but his interest in religion kept coming back.

“I was an English major,” he said. “I thought I’d probably get a poetry degree or something and not make any money. At some point both my personal interests and divine intervention led me to it.”

Kerr-Osman has been a minister for the past 15 years. He’s led churches in Tucson, Patagonia and Casa Grande. He was sent to Desert Foothills at the beginning of July to replace the Rev. Jennifer Smith, who moved to New Jersey with her new husband.

While Kerr-Osman will lead services each Sunday many of the programs the church has run in the past will remain the same.

“In our church the priests move around,” Kerr-Osman said. “Because of that, a lot of the things in the church stay the same but each time a new pastor comes the pastor brings new interests or skills... This church has a lot of mission outreach within the church and that will all continue.”

Kerr-Osman said his main interest and the focus of many of his sermons on is spiritual formation.

“That’s something Jenny and I shared in common,” he said. “It’s teaching different ways of praying. Not just praying in your head with words or out loud with words, but there’s all kinds of different ways to pray or to interact with the spirit. It could be to worship in church or working with homeless people. Spiritual formation encompasses a lot of different things.”

Desert Foothills United Methodist Church is located at 2156 E. Liberty Lane. The church meets for services every Sunday at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-7914 or

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