What We Believe
We Believe in the Trinity
God the Father has always existed. He was not made, but all things were made by Him and for His glory. God is eternal and infinite, all-knowing, everywhere present, all-powerful and unchanging. God is holy, righteous, perfect and full of grace. God’s mercies are new every morning and His love endures forever.
Jesus the Son has always existed. He was not made, but was present at creation—all things were made through Him and by Him all things hold together. Jesus is the Son of God and He is the perfect likeness of the Father. He was incarnated (became a man) and lived a sinless life. Through His death and resurrection, Jesus defeated sin and death for all people. He physically ascended into heaven and will return to earth one day. He will judge all people and His kingdom will never end.
The Holy Spirit has always existed. He was not made, but was active in the creation of the world. The Holy Spirit teaches, encourages, counsels. He convicts people of sins and points them toward their need for salvation. He dwells in the lives of believers: praying for them, empowering them, giving them spiritual gifts and new life in Jesus Christ.
The word “trinity” comes from “tri” meaning three and “unity” meaning one. The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are three distinct "persons", meaning who they are is different, but they share one nature, so what they are is the same. The Bible tells us there is only one God because the three persons of the Trinity share the same divine essence.
We Believe in the Authority of Scripture
The Bible was written by humans but all Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, correcting and training believers to live in God’s ways (right ways) so that we may be thoroughly equipped to serve Him by doing good works. Jesus tells us God’s word is truth and He came to give evidence of that truth.
Coming from the Jewish Bible, the Old Testament books were settled before the birth of Jesus. The New Testament, which is made of letters and other documents written after Jesus’ ascension, were in circulation among churches for about 300 years before being settled on as the authoritative word of God by several councils of Bishops. Christians recognize God guided the early church in determining what books/letters were truly inspired by Him and should be acknowledged as “canon,” meaning accepted as genuine.
We Believe in Eternal Life
God created humans in His image and for His glory. We are spiritual beings with mortal bodies and immortal souls. However, humans are sinful and, therefore, unable to spend eternity with God except through faith in Jesus Christ. The traditional Christian view is those who believe will share eternal joy with God in heaven, while those who refuse God's love suffer endless separation from Him. Those who believe will be resurrected into imperishable bodies suitable for eternal life with God, and will be judged/rewarded according to how they lived their lives.
Who We Are
Reverend Dr. Jonathan George, Senior Pastor
A lifelong resident of East Ohio, minus college and one year in West Virginia, Jon is a third- generation pastor. He has been the pastor of Dueber Church since 2018. He is married to Emily, a doctor of internal medicine, and they have two children, Michael and Adeline. They have loved Stark County since moving here in 2013.
Pastor Jon graduated from Geneva College before working at a mental health facility for youth outside of Pittsburgh. In 2009, he sensed God's calling to share the healing power of Jesus and entered full-time ministry. He received a Master of Divinity degree from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. Just recently Jon apparently felt a need to write more papers and completed his Doctor of Ministry degree at United Theological Seminary focused on the continuing work of the Holy Spirit.
Jon is passionate about seeing lives transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit and seeing people grow as they realize the power of God at work in them. When not in ministry, he loves spending time with his family outdoors and when he gets the chance to smoke meat. Jon, Emily, and the kids love hiking and finding a lake to swim in.
Char Messenger, Director of Discipleship
Char has lived in Massillon, Ohio for most of her life, with the exception of 2 years in Fairbanks, Alaska where her life was blessed with the birth of her oldest, Aven; 2 years in Hampton, Virginia where Carolynn entered the world as a second blessing; Char then returned to Stark County where Julia, the youngest and only true Ohioan was her third blessing. In addition, Char is Nana to four beautiful grandchildren, Thomas, Joslynn, Cody, and Jada.
She was raised in the Methodist tradition and began serving on staff in her home church in 1992 and since has served in 3 other local Methodist churches, including Dueber beginning in 2009. She has also participated in leadership in the East Ohio Conference and Tuscarawas District.
Char studied and received her degree in accounting while in Virginia and has done further studies in management at Malone University. After utilizing her education in the secular world, she moved into church administration, and then received her calling into discipleship ministry. Love for Jesus, people, and music have guided her way for her living out giftedness in educational ministries, recovery ministries, and worship leadership.
Her vision in discipleship – One to One – reflects her passion for personal one to one relationship with Jesus…that calls an individual to one to one relationship with others for the sake of sharing Jesus…that results in the other’s personal one to one relationship with Jesus.
Char loves traveling…anywhere…and spending time with family. She enjoys playing games, cooking (and eating), and spending time with others.
Michael Calabris, Organist
Michael is a Northeast Ohio-based composer and organist. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of Akron and his Master of Music degrees (Composition, Organ Performance, and Harpsichord Performance) from Cleveland State University. His primary composition teachers included Sebastian Birch, Daniel McCarthy, Gregory D’Alessio, and Andrew Rindfleisch. At Cleveland State University Michael studied organ performance with renowned international concert organist, Todd Wilson, and harpsichord performance with Joela Jones Weiss, principal keyboardist for The Cleveland Orchestra.
While a graduate student at CSU, Michael was the recipient of several academic awards and scholarships, including the Bain Murray Award for Excellence in Music Composition and the Leonard and Joan Terr Memorial Scholarship.
Michael’s compositions have been performed and recorded internationally. His works have been premiered by ensembles such as the Cleveland Chamber Choir, and by prominent concert organists, including Carson Cooman, James Flores, and Vidas Pinkevičius.
Michael’s music is published by SMP Press, and recordings of his music can be found on various streaming platforms, including Amazon Music and Spotify.
A lifelong resident of Northeast Ohio, Michael works as a freelance organist and pianist, in addition to his compositional and liturgical work. When he’s not composing, arranging, recording, and performing music, Michael is an enthusiast for early/Silent Era films. His other interests include nature photography, collecting Byzantine Orthodox/Eastern Christian religious art, watching ‘90s sitcoms, reading, and spending time with his family, friends, and colleagues.
Michael is a member of the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP), and the American Guild of Organists.
Hannah Robinson, Pianist
Hannah received her first keyboard when she was four years old, and her parents quickly realized she had discovered a new passion. She took piano lessons with Kathy Gold until 2018, when she began studying under Dr. Michael Benson at Malone University. Hannah is a current student, working toward degrees in Music Production and Bible & Theology, with an Honors minor. She is actively involved in Malone's University Chorale and Chamber Choir, and intermittently participates in the university's theatre and opera theatre programs.
Hannah is particularly fascinated by the Old Testament. She has taken two semesters of Hebrew and plans to continue learning the language. She loves the way playing piano in worship allows her to combine her passions for theology and music, and has been playing piano at Dueber since September of 2019.
When she's not occupied with school, Hannah loves exploring nature, drinking tea, and reading books-- especially books by C.S. Lewis and Charles Dickens. She is also pursuing a part-time career as a novelist.
John Garnes, Music Director
John originally comes from Wooster, Ohio. He moved to Stark County in 2015 when he began his time as a student at Malone University, and he’s stayed ever since. John is married to his wife, Kate, and they have a very fluffy orange cat named Felicia. He has been the Music Director at Dueber Church since June of 2017.
John’s love for music began at a very early age, and that love has been with him on his faith journey. He graduated from Malone University in May of 2020 with his Bachelor of Arts in Music. On top of his role as Music Director at Dueber, he is a private instructor of piano and voice at Green Music School. John also currently works as a customer service and data entry representative at AreaTrend in North Canton. He is also a frequent judge of the Massillon Voice Singing Competition hosted by Lincoln Theatre.
John grew up in the church, specifically at Northview Alliance Church in Wooster, Ohio. His goal when he leads music, prayer, a rehearsal, or anything else, is to take the focus off himself and give it to Jesus. He believes that we all may act as vessels which Jesus can use to shine his light through to others. When not focusing on ministry, John loves motor sports, digital graphic design, writing music, and spending time with his wife, friends, family, and cat.
James W. Duck, Youth Director
James is a lifelong resident of Perry Township, minus his time in the United States Army, and he grew up in our very own sanctuary. His parents, George and Lynda, have attended Dueber United Methodist church for over 50 yrs.
As an adult, James started volunteering with the youth in mid-2016 as a van driver, picking up youth and taking them home after events. The youth quickly found “Duck”, as they all call him, as someone worth learning from. In November of 2019, James Duck was hired as the Youth Director at Dueber church. He is passionate about walking side by side with the youth of Dueber as they grow in their faith and love of Jesus Christ. He is teaching them about what it means to be active Christians in the church. One of his goals is to connect each generation to each the others by worshiping and by serving our community and one another. James Duck uses outside-the-box ways to create multi-generational familiarity; including visitations with members of our Church family that are no longer able to attend regularly. He has made it abundantly clear that he wants Springtide Insights (Dueber Church's youth program) socially intertwined with all members of the church.
As a back to back Dueber Young adult chili cook-off champion James enjoys cooking and supporting local restaurants. James enjoys spend time with family and friends and his favorite time of fellowship is over a meal of any sort. His biggest (and smallest) supporter is his faithful man’s best friend, Gideon. James and Gideon are inseparable during life’s journey.