Pastoral Team

Senior Pastor

James Dollins

James was appointed as Lead Pastor of Anaheim UMC in July of 2014, and he feels richly blessed by the loving, active community of faith that has warmly welcomed his family.

He is active in AUMC’s Missions and Outreach Team, in leading weekly scripture study, and planning worship in the church’s tradition of beautiful music and liturgy. He is invigorated by AUMC’s new outreach to young people through Wednesday Evening Contemporary Worship, singing in our church choir, and welcoming neighbors of diverse cultures and languages.

Please feel free to contact Pastor James to discuss your favorite religious questions!

Associate Pastor

Nicole Armstrong

I came to AUMC in January 2018 from a year long Chaplain Residency in Newport Beach, CA.

I grew up in Tustin, CA, so Southern California has been and always will be my first home. I left the beaches to go to seminary in Durham, North Carolina where I fell deeply in love with BBQ and the beauty of the South.

My specialization in seminary was in Theology, Medicine, and Culture… so I love discussing anything that has to do with the theology of trauma, gender, suffering, culture, and bodies! Clearly I am a bit weird and nerdy… but it is how God made me, so I am embracing it.

Here at AUMC I am involved in our Wednesday Night Service “Gather”, leading Youth Group, organizing Small Groups, and helping with Outreach Ministries. My passions outside of ministry are gardening, reading, music, traveling, learning, and discussing theology.

I am always up for a cup of coffee, book recommendations, or deep theological discussion! Feel free to reach out to me.

Please find the link to my blog (to the right here) where I share my spiritual journey.

Diaconal Minister

MJ. Buist

MJ started as the Minister of Children’s Education and Visitation in May of 2015 and loves her job.

She is responsible for our Sunday School, children’s events, and visiting our home-centered. She also enjoys planning the yearly women’s retreat.

She became a published author this year and is working on two other books. She is a proud Diaconal Minister following their mission to bring the love, service, and justice of Christ to the world.

Feel free to contact her to find out how you may join her in service to our children and home-centered.

Support & Music

Operations Manager

Sherry Hanberg

My name is Sherry Hanberg. I was hired to be the church treasurer in 1986. I have enjoyed every year since then. This is a loving, caring church and the people are so very friendly. This church has been my rock for many years and I am truly blessed.

I am in charge of the maintenance of the facility, outside facility users, payroll, contributions, and all monies related to the church. I am also involved in the Rummage sale, the Easter Egg hunt and breakfast and the Finance campaign and luncheon. I enjoy my work so very much and the interaction with all the people. Our staff is a loving staff and our office atmosphere is so enjoyable that we have over 16 volunteers to help make sure the office runs efficiently.

Church Communications

Lee Strohm

Director of Music

John Elg

John Elg (pronounced “Elj”) grew up in Los Angeles and began singing in the Children’s Choir at La Tijera United Methodist Church. He attended California State University, Northridge and graduated with a degree in Music Education. He went on to study music at Cincinnati Conservatory, USC, UCLA and Loyola Marymount. Some of his greatest teachers were John Alexander, Elmer Thomas, Robert Shaw, Donald Neuen, and Paul Salamunovich.

As an educator, John taught Choral Music at Mission Viejo High School and also at and Orange Coast College. As a Minister of Music, he served for 27 years at Presbyterian Church of the Master.

Professionally John has conducted over 500 Hollywood studio sessions for orchestras and choirs, and was Conductor of the orchestra for the Laguna Beach Pageant of the Masters from 2009 – 2016.

John is married to Gretchen (a fine alto) and they have 2 children Edward and Elizabeth.

Worship Leader

Emilio Tello

I was born and raised in Southern California. My faith journey has included 11 years at a Lutheran school, 4 years at a Catholic school, international non denominational Christian missionary work, and involvement with the United Methodist church for the past 8 years.

I completed my Bachelor of Arts in Music from California State University, Long Beach with a primary emphasis on voice and a secondary emphasis on cultural anthropology.

I have been playing in, and leading, bands for the past 12 years as a guitarist and vocalist in styles ranging from jazz to classical, and pop to blues.

I particularly love the welcoming community at Anaheim UMC and am grateful to be a part of that fellowship by helping people grow in their faith through music.

Outside of the church, my work includes recording, performing, and teaching locally. When not working, I most enjoy outdoor activities like camping and hiking, and spending time my fiancée, Krystal.

Custodian

Miguel Rodriguez

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