Pastor Elaine Ruth

I graduated from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville with a Bachelor of Arts in English and spent the majority of my career as a technical writer for Department of Energy contractors. Ordained ministry is a second career for me. I have been a pastor in the Holston Conference since 2011. I earned a Master of Divinity degree from the School of Theology at the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee. I have served churches in Lake City and Knoxville, Tennessee. I moved to Surgoinsville from First UMC and Flat Rock UMC in Independence, Virginia.

My husband, Bob, is also a pastor. We are excited to be in Tennessee again and closer to family. We have two adult children, Vanessa and Christopher, and a grandson, Dalton, who live in Knoxville.

I grew up in the Baptist church but as an adult I was drawn to the United Methodist Church. The emphasis on God’s grace for all is close to my heart and shows up in all of my sermons. 

I am a firm believer in the church functioning as the body of Christ. We all have gifts and talents, and all of them are necessary to the health of the church. I love teaching the Bible and small group book studies. I am also excited about the opportunities to be involved in ministry to the community.


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