REED CITY – The path to becoming a Methodist minister took a sort of scenic route for Kathryn Cadarette, who first spent nine years working for a newspaper.

“I was born and raised in Indiana, and I majored in journalism in college,” she explained. “Not with the idea of writing, but rather the idea of giving a Christian perspective in the newsroom. I thought at the time, that was my calling.”

The new minister at Reed City United Methodist Church, “Pastor Kathy” has a quick smile. She didn’t hesitate to use it when she added, “But God had a different calling in mind. Journalism was just a good foundation.”

As a city editor, she gathered life experience that proved to be an asset, something she felt she couldn’t have offered had she gone directly from a seminary the into the ministry. Seeds were planted and the growing began.

She considered writing for Christian publications, but it was a verbal nudge she received from a pastor in Battle Creek one Sunday as she helped serve communion that set her on a different course.

“He said, ‘If you ever think about getting out of journalism some day, I think you’d make a wonderful pastor.’”

Pastor Kathy remembers thinking to herself that perhaps she could, “If I can Xerox my sermon and pass them out, but I could never see me standing up there preaching.”

A couple days later, however, she called the pastor and said perhaps they could meet and he could tell her what steps she needed to take if she decided to go into the ministry.

“It was first the people outside of me confirming what I was starting to feel inside of me,” she explained.

And so it was that she, this 1982 graduate of Ball State University at Muncie, Indiana, moved from the newsroom, and took the first steps of the journey toward becoming a Methodist minister.

She completed her studies at United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio, in 1994.

Her first appointment was Horton Bay United Methodist Church. After her first year there, Greensky Hill United Methodist Church was added to her responsibilities as a minister.

Greensky began as a Native American mission church. Pastor Kathy learned to say the Lord’s Prayer and sing many hymns in Ojibiway.

In 2000 she took a three year leave of absence to write her first book, “A Very Present Help, A Story of God’s Grace in the Midst of Tragedy.” In it, she tells the true story of how she helped a man and his wife and their young family deal with a horrible battle against a foe called cancer. Copies of that story are available at RCUMC.

Then in 1999, Pastor Kathy became a bride. She describes their home as “an M & M household.” She said it all depends on which of them is telling the story. She contends it is a Methodist and Mennonite home, while her husband, Pastor Dave, undoubtedly would say it a Mennonite and Methodist home. After all, he is the Mennonite pastor at Hilltop Fellowship in Petoskey.

“To me that tells who we believe God is,” Pastor Kathy explained. “He is bigger than one person or one religion.”

One of Pastor Dave’s first outreach projects in the area was to build a new lifeguard stand for use at Albright Camp.

“The third member of our household is Ruthie, our two and one-half year old Pomeranian,” Pastor Kathy said.

She smiled and her eyes lit up as she shared about “Dave’s three children who are all married, and our 10 grandchildren.”

She enjoys doing counted cross-stitch, had a huge garden up north, and does lots of canning.

She describes Reed City as “the friendliest town I’ve ever been in. My first impression of Reed City was maybe they were only letting me meet the friendly people, but this is a wonderful place. The town and the church feel like a good fit.

“My primary goal as a pastor is to be teacher, offer opportunities for retreats and Bible studies. I love to do those things, and then see the expression on faces and know, ‘Aha. They get it.’ Then step back and let God be God.”