Pastoral Leadership

Rev. William Johnson, Senior Pastor

Rev. Bill Johnson is a passionate preacher of the Gospel whose gifts for ministry include leadership, teaching, and prophetic insight. He has been serving FUMCO since July of 2014. Previously, he served 4 local congregations in California, including 2 start-up churches, until God called him to ministry as a full-time evangelist. For the ten years prior to his appointment at FUMCO, Pastor Bill served as the Executive Director of Lift Ministries. In 2011 Pastor Bill was part of a team that traveled to Ghana to teach spiritual leadership for local pastors and laity, and had the opportunity to preach several times in local churches. He returned to Ghana in 2013, 2014, and 2015 with a Team to continue training in leadership development and disciple-making.  

Pastor Bill is married to Dr. Judy Johnson, a licensed educational psychologist; they have three adult children and two grandchildren. He earned a B.A. in Studio Art from the University of Redlands and holds an M.Div. from the Claremont School of Theology. Bill is an avid cyclist and enjoys painting.

Contact: [email protected] or (714) 532-6363, ext. 206


Rev. Jerry Owyang, Minister of Discipleship

Jerry Owyang has been serving our California-Pacific Annual Conference since 1989 in a variety of cultural and ministry settings—churches, camps, and correctional facilities. He previously served here at FUMCO as the Associate Pastor to oversee Youth & Christian Education Ministries. After three years with us, in 2004 Jerry became the appointed Senior Pastor to Cornerstone UMC in Placentia. After serving there for 12 years, he took a transitional leave of absence for rest, renewal, and a holy conversation with God to discern his next ministry setting.

Over his ministerial career, Pastor Jerry has served multi-ethnic churches in San Diego, Woodland Hills, and Garden Grove before coming to FUMCO. He has led camps and developed ministries for children, youth, and young adults; served on District Committees of Ordained Ministry and Communications & Media Task Force; written devotions for The Upper Room and curriculum for Cokesbury, and helped lead Kairos Prison Ministry.

Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Jerry graduated from UC San Diego and the University of Santa Clara School of Law. Married to Julie, they have three married adult children and are awaiting the birth of their first grandchild. He loves good food, good books, good music, solitude, and would rather be on a zip-line than filing papers!

Contact: [email protected] or (714) 532-6363, ext. 203


Associates In Ministry Team

Associates In Ministry are consecrated leaders in the body of Christ—people answering God’s call to fulfill the work of pastoral ministry. In partnership with the appointed pastors, they form a comprehensive ministry team (the “A.I.M. Team”), whose primary purpose is to lead, strengthen, and uphold the body of Christ at First United Methodist Church of Orange.

2018-2019 A.I.M. Team: Teresa Blanchette, Patrick Duncan, Sam Fast, Judy Gillham, Jackie Hanson, Mark Helme, Judy Johnson, David Kull

Kelley Martinez, Lay Leader

Biography coming soon. Kelley took on the role of Lay Leader in the spring of 2016.

Office Staff

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Rochelle Flosi, Office Manager

Rochelle joined our staff in October of 2018, and comes to our community with a rich background and experience. Her past work experiences include serving as a medic with the Air National Guard, working as a Sheriff’s Radio Dispatcher in Los Angeles and a Public Safety Dispatcher in San Jose, then serving for nearly 10 years as the church secretary of Hollister United Methodist Church. In addition, Rochelle served on the Staff-Parish Relations Committee and the Preschool Board of Directors at Hollister UMC. For the past 5 years Rochelle was an Administrative Assistant for Monte Vista Christian School in Watsonville.

Rochelle has a deep love of Disney and an even deeper love for Christ Jesus our lord and for serving the world in His name. She brings her own unique skill set and spiritual gifts to the work she will do in our midst. She her husband Ed along with their daughters, Amanda and Emily, are a wonderful addition to the family here at FUMCO, and we are blessed to receive them.

Contact: [email protected]

Sam Fast, Media Specialist

Sam was born and raised at the First United Methodist Church of Orange. Throughout his childhood and youth, he was active in the choir, hand bells, youth group, Wayfarers, and many other ministries around campus. After graduating high school, he remained active in the church while working and attending classes at a local community college. When he's not at the office (or running around Downtown Orange playing Pokémon), he works as a retail pharmacy technician.

In the spring of 2016, he joined the FUMCO staff as Media Specialist. His main responsibilities are the weekly worship materials, newsletter, and website maintenance.

Contact: [email protected]


Music Staff

Mike Short, Music Director

Mike has been the Director of Music at FUMCO since September of 1998. He directs the Sanctuary Choir and SkyWord Gospel Choir. Mr. Short is also the "Director of Choral Activities" at Orange High School.  He is the Founding Director of the Orange Community Master Chorale.  He received his Bachelor of Music degree from Chapman College in 1979 and his Masters in Choral Conducting from California State University Fullerton in 1987.  Mr. Short is married to Vicki, and they have two adult children and two grandchildren.

Contact: [email protected]

Ma-Li Lin, Organist

Picture and biography coming soon!

Sylvia Coussa, Bell Choir Director

Sylvia has been directing the Hand Bell program at 1st United Methodist Church since 2006. She has participated in many different aspects of church music her whole life.  This includes both vocal and instrumental aspects.  Sylvia was a church organist for over 25 years.  She has sung in church choirs since childhood.  She earned a Bachelor's Degree from Long Beach State and a Masters degree from Azusa Pacific. Mrs. Coussa was credentialed for teaching grades K-8.  She retired from teaching in 2001.

To Sylvia, the planning and preparation of music to be used in a worship service is a very spiritual and rewarding experience.  Her belief is that the musicianship and readiness of each member of the bell choir is important, but more importantly is the realization that they are in a leadership position for each person in worship.

In her spare time, Sylvia enjoys reading, crossword puzzles, and gardening.

Contact: [email protected]

Preschool Staff

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Cheri Payne, Director

Hello! My Name is Cheri Payne and I am Blessed to serve our children, families and staff here at Downtown Orange Preschool as the Director.

My Early Childhood Education Career began in the year 2000. I have had the pleasure of working in the classroom with all ages of children as well as in Administration. It brings me such joy to witness young children develop emotionally, academically and spiritually while in our care. Welcome, you have come to a very special place.

Carol Hilton, Faith, Family, and Community Coordinator

My name is Carol Hilton and I am the Faith, Family and Community Coordinator at the First United Methodist Church of Orange. I have been an educator for more than thirty years and I am excited to now extend my position to the Downtown Orange Preschool. Helping young children develop a love for learning and get a great start on their educational journey has been the joy of my life. I am looking forward to getting to know our students and their families and helping with all the activities of the preschool.