Bishop Gary Mueller
South Central Jurisdiction
Bishop Gary E. Mueller was elected to the episcopacy in 2012 by the South Central Jurisdiction. He served as the resident bishop of the Arkansas Area, which includes the Arkansas Conference in the South Central Jurisdiction of The United Methodist Church.
He retired on January 1, 2023.
After a friend invited him to attend UMYF his sophomore year of high school, Mueller came to a point of being ready to profess his faith in Christ. His call to ministry began to emerge a few years later, while he attended the University of Kansas. He went on to receive his theological education at Iliff School of Theology in Denver, Colorado, and at Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. He was ordained an Elder in the North Texas Conference in 1981.
Mueller remained in north Texas, serving pastoral appointments at First UMC Richardson, Brewster Memorial and McKenzie Memorial UMC, First United Methodist Church Roanoke-Trophy Club-Westlake, First UMC Denton and First UMC Plano. He also served for four years as Director of Connectional Ministries for the North Texas Conference Council.
Before his election to the episcopacy, he held a number of leadership roles, including delegate to the 2012 General Conference; four-time delegate to the South Central Jurisdictional Conference; chair of the North Texas Conference Ministry Center Building Committee during the design and construction of a new Conference Ministry Center; representative on the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry Task Force; and chair of the North Texas Conference Board of Ordained Ministry from 2008 until 2012.
He married Karen Goodman Mueller in 2016. Together, they have four adult children and spouses, Hailey and Stephen, Nick and Carrie, Kirk and Tiffany and Jeff and Dusty, as well as two adorable granddaughters, Madeline and Claire.
Bishop Mueller’s passion is leading spiritual revival that results in vital congregations that make disciples of Jesus Christ, who then make disciples equipped to transform lives, communities and the world.
Education and Honors:
Perkins School of Theology, Master of Divinity, 1979
University of Kansas, Bachelor's degree
Ordained Deacon, North Texas Conference, 1978
Ordained Elder, North Texas Conference, 1981
Assigned to Arkansas Area (Arkansas Conference), effective Sept. 1, 2012
Senior Pastor, First United Methodist Church, Plano, Texas, 2002-Present
Senior Pastor, First United Methodist Church, Denton, Texas, 1995-2002
Director, Council on Ministries, North Texas Annual Conference, 1991-1995
Pastor, First United Methodist Church Roanoke-Trophy Club-Westlake, Texas, 1988-1991
Pastor, McKenzie Memorial United Methodist Church, 1985-1988
Pastor, Brewster Memorial United Methodist Church, 1985-1988
Executive Pastor, First United Methodist Church, Richardson, Texas, 1982-1985
Associate Pastor for Evangelism, First United Methodist Church, Richardson, Texas, 1979-1982
North Texas Annual Conference
Delegate, General Conference 2012
Delegate, South Central Jurisdictional Conference, 2012, 2008, 2004, 2000, 1996 (alternate)
Chair, Board of Ordained Ministry, 2008-Present
Chair, Task Force to present proposed constitutional amendments to the North Texas Annual Conference, 2009
Chair, North Texas Conference Ministry Center Building Committee, 2003-2007
North Texas representative, South Central Jurisdiction Mission Council (Jurisdictional Executive Committee), 2000-2008
Chair, Board of Ordained Ministry Residency Committee, 1996-2004
South Central Jurisdiction representative, General Board of Higher Education and Ministry Task Force on residency during provisional membership, 1996-2000
Member, Aldersgate Covenant, 1994-1996 Primary author of legislation adopted by General Conference 1996 defining The United Methodist Church's mission statement "to make disciples of Jesus Christ."
Chair, North Texas Conference Board of Ordained Ministry residency program design committee, 1988-1999