Staff


  • Reverend Geoffrey Lightsey

    We welcome Geoff Lightsey and his family to FUMC Palestine.  He comes to us from First United Methodist Church in Cameron, Texas.  Before that, he served as pastor in Cooks Point, Texas.  Geoff graduated with his M.Div. from Brite Divinity School at T.C.U. and earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from LeTourneau University.  


    Geoff is married to Rebekah and they have three children.  The family is very involved in horse drill team with their two horses: Callidora & Bubba.

  • Derek Blackmon, Director of NextGen Ministries

    Derek is called into youth and student ministries.  He has been working in churches for over 15 years and has a passion for helping youth and young adults grow closer to God.


    Derek is married to Rachel and they have three children.  The whole family is very involved in the church youth activities.  

  • Jodi Bainum, Preschool Director

    Jodi Bainum is our  preschool director. She received her undergraduate degree in Early Childhood Education at Stephen F. Austin and her Master of Education through the University of Texas at Tyler.  She was a public school teacher for nine years.  She has worked for Palestine ISD and Elkhart ISD as a kindergarten and preschool teacher. Jodi has been married to her husband, Shane Bainum, for six years. They have two boys, Kaï and Reid.

  • Delilah Prater, Finance Administrator

    Delilah has come to us from a 32 year career at Security Storage.  She is who you will talk with about donations, tithes, and ordering supplies for events.  


    She is a very active Gigi, involved in Cars of Palestine Car Club and Cornerstone Helping Hands Food Ministry. 

  • Vickie Shaffer, Ministry and Missions Coordinator

    Vickie joined FUMC Palestine in 2008 after working for Lakeview Methodist Conference Center. Vickie enjoys reading, crocheting, gardening and antique shopping. Originally, she was the financial administrator but has followed her passion for helping others in need.  

  • Alice Chambers, Administrative Assistant

    Alice is the person you meet upon arriving to the church office. She is a retired teacher with 23 years experience. She enjoys reading, swimming, and travel.  She loves learning new things! 

    If you need any information, she can help!

  • Monroe Walker, Organ and Piano Accompanist

    Monroe joined First UMC Palestine as Church Organist in August, 2002. He came to us with 17 years experience in church music. He also serves as Fiscal Director responsible for all business matters at Lakeview Methodist Conference Center.

  • Priscilla Johnson, Housekeeper

    Priscilla loves serving the church and the community.  She is a student at TVCC, graduating in the Fall Semester of 2022.  

  • Carrie Culpepper - Financial Administrator

    We welcome Carrie Culpepper to our staff.  She has lived in Palestine the past couple of years and is eager to work with us!