David was born in northeast Missouri (Kirksville) and lived in LaPlata before moving to the Kansas City area (Lee’s Summit) at age 7. He graduated from Lee’s Summit High School, Central Missouri State in Warrensburg and Saint Paul School of Theology in Kansas City and also attended Asbury Theological Seminary in Kentucky. For 32 years, he has served churches throughout Missouri, and he is ecstatic about being in Bolivar. David’s favorite parts of ministry include seeing new people come to know Christ, encouraging people in their faith journey, and equipping leaders for the church.
David is married to Beth ( a career educator and Open Hearts UMC’s children’s director) and they are the proud parents of two grown sons, both married. John lives in Kansas City and Joe in Clayton (St. Louis).
his free time, David loves to hike and bike, try unique restaurants and
go to the movies. David’s favorite Bible verse is Jeremiah 29:11: “For I
know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper
you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Michael Cole is an associate pastor at Bolivar UMC and as a Certified Lay Minister, also serves as Senior Pastor at Humansville UMC. His home church is Prairie Chapel UMC in Urbana, where he has served in a variety of roles, from music ministry to building planning.
Michael is a builder by trade and in his “day job” runs a small construction business of his own.
He is a class of 82′ graduate of Skyline High School in Urbana and has lived in the local area most of his life.
Michael is married to Victoria Cole who he credits with being an awesome help-mate and a great support. He is also the father of four adult children and as an “empty nester” is thrilled to have the opportunity to pursue the call to serve God and others.
Dennis Smith graduated from Bolivar High School in 1981 and Southwest Baptist University in 1985. Following education, he served 3 years in the U.S. Army. Returning to Springfield MO, he began employment with the Federal Bureau of Prisons. His career took him to several locations in Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas until he retired in 2013.
Upon retirement, he and his family returned to their home of Bolivar, where he began to serve with the youth group in 2016.
Beth Collum studied Elementary and Art Education at University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg. She taught Art Education in Missouri 5 years, enjoyed home school life with her two boys for 10 years, then returned to work as an elementary classroom teacher in the public schools for 11 years.
She currently works part time as the Children’s Director at Open Hearts UMC and as a sub and paraprofessional in the Bolivar schools.
Special Needs Director
Andrew McFarlane moved to USA from his country of birth Scotland in 2000. Andrew is well traveled but calls Bolivar home along with Ashley and their 6 children.
Since 2002 Andrew has helped provide care for individuals with special needs and plans to do so for the foreseeable future.
Andrew’s passion for the special needs community has spread to our church family. Under Andrew’s guidance, our church has hosted Night To Shine and has formed their own special needs ministry called Living by Grace.
B.U.M. Kids Director
Amanda Wright has been the Director at B.U.M. Kids since 2014. She graduated from Southwest Baptist University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education with emphasis in Early Childhood.
After graduation, she taught kindergarten for eight years. Amanda is married to the love of her life, Nate, who is the Chair of the Business Department and Associate Professor of Business Administration at SBU.
They have a precious three-year-old son, their miracle baby, who brings much joy to their lives. This summer they were blessed by having one of their former foster sons come live with them again. They are grateful God has placed this wonderful boy in their lives again and are eager to see what God has in store for him.
Director of Music Ministries
The Connection Worship Leader
Debbie graduated from CMSU in Warrensburg with a Phys Ed. degree. From there she spent the next 27 years scheduling the Armco/GST steel mill in Kansas City. Upon leaving the steel mill, she added 6 years at Pepsico scheduling the work there. She earned a Master’s degree in Business and has earned certification in the field of logistics.
Child Care Director
Office Administrator Betty Stevenson
Betty Stevenson comes to Open Hearts with a heart to serve God and help the ministry of Open Hearts.
She has been an office manager, was a high school and college business teacher that taught computer applications, office skills, accounting and other related business subjects. She also worked as a college student advisor for first-generation, low income students.