The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

Meet Your Neighbor

By Susan Galbraith, The Quill

Pastor Gene Turner

Meet Your Neighbor Gene Turner, Pastor of the Stronghurst and Carman United Methodist Churches.

Gene was born in Clinton, Iowa and his early childhood was spent in Albany and later near Geneseo.

He graduated from Erie High School in 1989 and spent two years at Black Hawk East Junior College and his last two years at Western Illinois University at Macomb.

Gene and his wife Rhonda will have been married 16 years in March.

They have three children, Janelle (15), Kimberly (14), and Erick (9), all students at West Central Community District #235.

The Turner family live in the parsonage which is located at 315 West Main Street in Stronghurst.

In his free time, Gene enjoys shotgun deer hunting, golfing, fishing, all outdoor activities and helping his children with their 4-H sheep project. He said when he moved to town the Methodist district superintendent said, "I have had other ministers ask for different things, but never has any pastor asked if he could have sheep!"

His favorite vacation spot to golf was when he won a trip to the Island of Maui in Hawaii.

He was appointed to the Stronghurst and Carman United Methodist Churches on September 1, 2006. The Stronghurst Church has an average attendance of 55-60 members and the Carman Church has approximately the same.

He appreciates that both congregations enjoy his spontaneity as he sometimes wears blue jeans and Hawaiian shirts. At different times he does visuals, during his sermons, which help others to better comprehend his messages.

He has worked in several areas, mostly related to agriculture; hog farming, driving a truck and has worked for a full-service independent agriculture dealership.

The family has two pets, a German shepherd named Sierra, and a cat called Princess

He and his family are very happy to be living in a rural community setting with such friendly folks.