Rev. liza marler
A North Carolinian by birth, Liza is a natural southern girl who enjoys her sweet tea, good country cooking, country music and a good rocking chair on the porch. With a strong Catholic rearing, her relationship with Jesus Christ as Lord continued to grow. She joined the Methodist Church in 1987 and found the theology that spoke to her heart.
Liza was born in North Carolina, the youngest of four children of Lorraine and Grover Taylor. In her younger days, the church choir was a strong part of her life. She grew to love singing and even sang with a local band through High School and beyond. After working for three years to purchase her first car, she attended Pembroke State University (UNCP) and graduated with a degree in Communications and Theatre Performance in 1984.
Liza met her husband, Michael, while attending PSU and they were married in 1986. They lived in Nashville, TN for four years while Liza pursued a career in music. Realizing that family was more important, the two moved to Tucker, GA in 1989 and were blessed with a daughter, Taylor Michelle, in 1990. Taylor and Kyle Ewest, son-in-love, continues to bring such joy into their lives as blessed them with two grand-daughters, Sawyer Brooke, in 2016 and Hayden James in 2018. Their family has grown and are filled with God’s love and blessed immeasurably by God’s grace.
Liza has served as the Director of Programs and later as a Ministry Intern at Tucker First UMC, the Director of Christian Education at Acworth UMC, and Ministry Assistant at Gulf Breeze UMC. All these areas of ministry were a blessing from God to prepare her for full time ministry as a pastor. She attended Emory Candler School of Theology where she graduated in 2004 and received her first full time appointment at Thomson First UMC. She served TFUMC for four years; Cokesbury UMC for two years, Mt. Zion UMC, Smarr for seven years and FUMC Pine Mountain for two years.
Liza and Michael are a package deal! When Liza received her calling, Michael was not too happy but over time God worked in Michael’s heart to accept “our” calling to serve God by serving God’s people everywhere and anywhere. She says, “God knew that I would need a man who loves God as much as I do and one who could keep me grounded as we share in serving in ministry. Michael Marler is my partner in life’s entire journey with God’s help and blessing.” Michael is a high school math teacher and will be serving at Haymen Morris Middle School in the fall.
Liza and Michael are excited to serve God with you at Midway UMC. They look forward to meeting, walking with, and serving alongside each of you! Their new home is located at 376 Emma Drive, Winder, GA 30680 and Liza can be reached at 706-993-7679 or .
Becca began working at her dream job as a church secretary here at Midway in July 2017. She feels like working in the office of a church is the perfect marriage of her phone-answering skills and passion for people.
Becca grew up in Pine Mountain, GA in the middle of a 100-acre wood, and was a member of the tiny (but long-lasting) Salem UMC. She moved to Atlanta, graduated from Georgia State University with a degree in Psychology, and then moved to Athens to intern at the Christian Campus Fellowship at UGA. Becca then proceeded to have not one, but two babies in the next 15 months and has the highest hopes that she can raise them to adulthood without too many bumps and bruises.
In her current life, Becca is also a birth doula, which means she provides pregnant women with emotional and physical support as they birth their babies. So if she ever disappears from the church office, she's probably at a hospital in Athens helping a mom have a baby. She loves teaching her kids her dorky dance moves, building stuff out of scrap wood, and having people over for supper and sparklers. Make sure to stop into the church office to hang out when you're in the neighborhood!
Kyle joined Midway as a worship leader in October 2014. At the age of four, Kyle's musical journey began when his grandfather taught him how to play a boogie woogie bass line on an old upright piano. Kyle was classically trained on piano for ten years and later taught himself how to play the guitar during his teenage years. He joined his first worship band at Hebron Christian Church in Dark Corner, Georgia in 2004 and has enjoyed leading and performing ever since.
Kyle attended the University of Georgia and graduated in 2009 with a BBA in Management Information Systems. During his college years, Kyle joined numerous musical ensembles and played a wide variety of music from blues to pop to country to rock as well as jazz.
Outside of his time at Midway, Kyle enjoys spending time with friends, cheering on the Dawgs, learning new musical instruments, playing golf, listening to records, baking chocolate chip cookies, writing and recording music, and tweaking his bio on the Midway website.
Cheri’s beginning in music traces back to early childhood. Her father was a music minister who worked with multiple churches on the east coast. When he began traveling to perform concerts, he brought the family along not just as support, but to sing as a group. These experiences instilled both unique perspective and strong connection to leading music at an young age. Her parents also became dorm parents in Bandung, Indonesia for 22 children of missionaries. Big change brought huge life lessons on understanding how we are all the same in God’s eyes and how imperative it is to love your neighbor.
When her family moved to Northeast Georgia, Cheri took advantage of band class and played clarinet year round until she graduated. She took every opportunity to sing, tapping into talents passed down from her grandmother (a 45 year music minister and classical piano teacher) and her father. She skipped college to pursue life head on. Her twenties brought years of serious health problems to overcome. When those years were behind her, she looked to music to help her find her place in life again after years of hospitals and being immobilized. Not too much later, she met and married her husband, Ethan, beginning a new chapter with thanks in her heart for life and love.
The last 5 years have brought them from Atlanta, to Aurora, Colorado (Metro-Denver), to western Massachusetts, and then back to Georgia in July 2018. They live in Athens and have a 6 year old boy named Skylar and a 3 year old girl named Sage. Ethan is a history teacher and Cheri teaches Preschool. Cheri has rejoined her old band to start performing again in the Athens area. In the future, she will continue to pursue her degree in Addiction Studies which she began earlier this year. Her travels around the country grew a new passion to help the marginalized, the mentally ill, and the addicted.