Rev. Steve Price & Rev. Catherine Fluck Price
Senior Co-Pastors, Trinity United Methodist Church
Catherine and I moved to Gainesville this summer to become the new co-pastors of Trinity United Methodist Church. It has been a homecoming for her. She is a Buchholz grad and grew up actively involved in children and youth ministries at Trinity but hadn’t lived here for over 30 years. While I had some familiarity with Gainesville from holiday visits to see family, I had never lived here. I did have fond memories from those visits of pick-up basketball games at Littlewood (in my younger years), flag football with family and friends at the Boys and Girls Club, and great places to do training runs all over town (with hills…something I didn’t have for 20 years living in Bradenton!) I had no idea what to expect when it came to living here, though.
Three months in, I can honestly say it is already feeling like home! I have been amazed at how friendly people are. It’s no wonder that over and over again I hear a couple of very common themes: people grew up here and never left because they love it so much, or they came here for college and never left because they love it so much. I am really enjoying the convenience of everything. My workplace, trips to the grocery store, plenty of local restaurants, the tennis club where I’ve already made great friends and found solid practice partners, places to feed my love for good coffee, and cultural opportunities like Devil’s Millhopper and the Gainesville Community Playhouse are all less than a ten-minute drive from home. How could I not be happy?
It’s also a privilege to serve as the pastors of Trinity UMC, a great church that is making an impact throughout this city and beyond as well. Trinity’s emphasis on reaching out beyond the walls and property to make a difference, creating strategic and impactful partnerships with schools and non-profit organizations throughout Gainesville, really meshes well with my understanding of what it means to be a church. It’s also such a vibrant place onsite every day, offering one of the best preschools in the area (Stepping Stones), sports and recreation opportunities for all ages, and fantastic venues for events both small and large. And you couldn’t ask for a better place to worship on Sunday mornings.
Trinity has also been a leader in the community in developing ecumenical relationships with other faith communities. It is exciting to see the collaboration that already exists between these communities from varying denominational and religious traditions. I look forward to continuing that work, joining with others in Gainesville to encourage interfaith dialogue with mutual respect and understanding.
Greater Gainesville is indeed a wonderful place to live, work and play, and I look forward to the prospect of spending the rest of my working days here.