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Finney starts Sunday at OCUM

Finney starts Sunday at OCUM
Finney starts Sunday at OCUM
The Rev. Doug and Margaret Finney.

On Sunday, the Fourth of July, the Old Capitol United Methodist Church in Corydon will meet its new minister, the Rev. Douglas S. Finney.
Finney, 51, and his wife, Margaret, have moved here from Spencer, Ind., where Finney pastored the Spencer United Methodist Church for five years.
Finney replaces The Rev. Alan Phillips, who has been assigned to Rushville after a two-year pastorate here.
An outgoing and enthusiastic person who has a ‘great passion’ for life, people and the ministry, Finney said he firmly believes God has great things in store for his new congregation, one of the largest in Harrison County.
‘I am excited about living in a community with such history and serving a congregation that has a great passion for ministry,’ he said. ‘I see my role in several capacities, those being servant, leader, encourager, listener and ‘vision-caster.’ Also, it is important to remember that I am part of a ministry team.’
He added that ‘Empowerment of the laity is vitally important.’
Finney said he’s anxious to share his story of what God has done in his life and in the lives of others, some of whom were down and out and without hope. He said he wants to ‘share the excitement of life that God gives and to bring people together’ and be ‘a minister of hope.’
Finney helped start a thrift shop for needy people in Spencer, and he also has a penchant for working with young people. He once vowed to ride a horse backward around the town square if enough young people showed up at church. When the youngsters turned out in numbers, Finney made good on his promise.
‘I like to have fun, I like to think outside the box,’ he said in a recent interview.
Finney was called to the ministry as a young boy. As he listened to ‘wonderful stories of missionaries’ and came under the influence of a beloved pastor, he said his ‘passion was stirred.’
‘I came to know Jesus Christ as my Lord and savior at a United Methodist Youth Fellowship retreat in May of 1971,’ he said. ‘From that point on, I knew that God was calling me.’
Finney was reared in Lansing, Ill., and Calumet City and Hammond, Ind., an area of northwest Indiana known as ‘da region.’ He attended Thornton Fractional North High School and went to college at Culver-Stockton in Canton, Mo., where his parents had gone to school. He studied history, religion and philosophy, and graduated in 1975. As a college student, he pastored his first church, in Meyer, Ill. To get there, he had to cross the lock and dam on the Mississippi River. Meyer is a small farming community that was wiped out in the 1993 flood.
Finney earned his master of divinity degree at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis in 1979, and his first appointment was at the Liberty-Freeport Charge in Shelby County.
He has served on the annual conference’s Congregational Redevelopment Committee, and he’s been a district youth coordinator, leading several youth mission trips to Johns Island, S.C., and Kingsport, Tenn.
Referring to John 3:16, about God loving the world so much that He gave His only son, Finney said, ‘We would all agree that our world is in need of the saving presence of our Lord. To share the Good News and experience the transformation of people’s lives is central to my passion for ministry.’
‘As a servant of God, as a congregation of believers,’ he said, ‘our vision should be to allow God to use us in the transformation of people’s lives. Transformation is the fulfillment of John 3:16.’
Finney and his wife, Margaret, 52, who has been a unit leader in the Owen Valley High School cafeteria in Spencer, have two sons: Marty, 29, is a machine foreman at Infrastructure Systems Inc. in French Lick, and Nick, 25, lives in Greenwood and is a surgical nurse at Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis. Marty and his wife have two children. Nick will be married soon.
Margaret enjoys sewing, quilting, gardening, flowers and yard work. Pastor Finney said his outside interests include gardening, cars, trains and being active in the community.