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Dr. Greg Coates, Ph.d

Greg was raised in Springfield, IL as the son of a Free Methodist Pastor.  He came to faith through the influence of his parents and youth group and then went to study history and political science at Greenville University in southern Illinois.  After college, he spent a year serving the Free Methodist Church as a short-term missionary in China where he taught at a university.  After returning and graduating from Asbury Theological Seminary in Kentucky, Greg and his family moved to the near eastside of Indianapolis where he served as the senior pastor of the Indianapolis First Free Methodist Church.  After four years of rewarding but challenging times in that at-risk urban environment, Greg returned to school to earn his Masters in Theology from Duke Divinity School in North Carolina and Ph.D in historical theology from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois.  Despite these academic credentials, however, Greg is a pastor at heart and longs to help others learn to live more like Jesus.  Greg is the father of two daughters, Lydah (13) and Eve (11) who live with their mother in Evanston most of the time, but who also visit their father frequently. In his free time, Greg enjoys doting on his girls, having conversations with friends, walking his dog, and maybe even playing the occasional video game.  

Pastor Greg will begin serving, effective July 1, 2020.   In the UMC pastors are appointed by a Bishop that oversees an episcopal area. 

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