Staff Profiles

Bro. Barry

Dr. Barry Scott


Dr. Barry Scott has been in the ministry full-time since 1977 and has served as pastor of Aldersgate United Methodist Church since January 2010. A native of West Tennessee, Dr. Scott graduated from the University of Tennessee at Martin and Candler Seminary at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. He received a Doctorate of Ministry from Oral Roberts Seminary in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Dr. Scott is an accomplished children’s entertainer with skills as a puppeteer, magician, balloonist and storyteller. Because of his talent as a humorist, Dr. Scott has been asked to speak to numerous churches, groups and clubs.

Teresa, his wife of 40 years, is a Registered Nurse at Jackson-Madison General Hospital.

Ondra Farmer

Music Director

Ondra has been at Aldersgate for over 25 years. She came here as a personal favor to the former organist as an interim director, but the warmth of the people in the church and the challenge of using music to enhance the worship experience led her to stay. When Ondra first came to Aldersgate, there were about 20 faithful choir members, but that number has grown to over 40 singers on the roll today.

Leadership of both the adult and children's choirs falls under Ondra. The choirs provide special services of music for Easter and Christmas. They also perform secular programs for the congregation’s enjoyment including “Elvis is in the House” and "Hee Haw".

Ondra graduated from Lambuth University with a degree in Music Education and has Master’s Degree in Music Education from Murray State University. She is retired teacher from the Jackson-Madison County School System. Ondra has been married to Charles Farmer for 46 years and they have two children and two grandchildren.

Karen Melson

Administrative Assistant

Karen has been with Aldersgate since March 1996. She views her position as an "answer to a prayer" following the death of her husband and a ministry to what she calls her "second church home."

As Administrative Assistant, Karen serves as the receptionist, Financial Secretary and Membership Secretary. She also publishes and mails a weekly newsletter and the Sunday morning bulletins as well as all other special bulletins.

Karen was born in Visalia, California and has an Associate Degree in Business from College of Sequoias. She has lived in Jackson since 1971. Karen was married to Travis Melson and has been blessed with two sons, two daughters and four grandchildren, who bring much joy to her life. Besides spending time with her family, Karen enjoys many hobbies, oil painting, jewelry making and gardening. She has been a member of Brown's United Methodist Church in Jackson, Tennessee for 35 years and has served as a children's Sunday school teacher, on several committees and is a member of the UMW.

"Being a part of Aldersgate's staff the last several years has greatly enriched my life in many ways, and over the years, I have made many wonderful Aldersgate friends!”

Besty Porter

Organist & Handbell Director

Betsy Porter has been the organist at Aldersgate since 2003. She was born in Birmingham, AL, and grew up in Jackson, TN. Betsy graduated from Jackson Central Merry High School, has a Bachelor of Music degree from Union University, and has completed some work towards a Master of Music degree. She currently works for the City of Jackson as an Administrative Specialist at the Ned.

Several years ago Betsy organized the handbell group called Celebrate. This group of 14 players rehearses on Sunday mornings and plays several times each year.

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