Dr. Shane Stanford was appointed as the sixth senior minister of Christ United Methodist Church on July 1, 2011. His duties include serving as the lead teaching pastor and executive director for strategic investment. He is also the chief executive and vision officer for the congregation.
Dr. Stanford previously served congregations in Florida, Mississippi and North Carolina, including as the founding and senior pastor of Asbury UMC in the Mississippi Annual Conference. Dr. Stanford also served as the director of stewardship and healthy congregations for the Mississippi Methodist Foundation and as the advisor for Church Growth for the Bishop of the Mississippi Annual Conference.
For four years (and nearly 200 episodes) Dr. Stanford served as host of The United Methodist Hour, a television and radio ministry airing in more than 30,000,000 homes nationwide. He currently serves as co-host (with Maxie Dunnam) of We Believe in Memphis, an issues interview-based television program in the Memphis metro area.
Dr. Stanford was awarded a doctorate from Asbury Seminary in 2014. He also holds graduate degrees in theology and ethics from Duke Divinity School, where he was awarded the prestigious Jameson Jones Award in homiletics. He is a graduate (cum laude) of the Honors College of the University of Southern Mississippi, where he holds a degree in political science with a minor in history. Dr. Stanford also has advanced training in marriage and family studies from the University of Southern Mississippi.
Dr. Stanford has traveled extensively sharing his personal testimony as an HIV- and hepatitis C-positive hemophiliac. He has spoken across the nation, including at the 2006 Saddleback Global AIDS Summit in California and at the Global Gathering for AIDS Awareness in Texas.
He has appeared on several media outlets, including Good Morning America, Fox & Friends, Canada’s Harvest TV and CNN.
Dr. Stanford is married to his high school sweetheart, Dr. Pokey Stanford, and they are the parents of three children—Sarai Grace, Juli Anna, and Emma Leigh.
Dr. Stanford has written numerous books, including The Cure for the Chronic Life, Mosaic: When God Uses All the Pieces, The Eight Blessings, The Way of Praying, Saintuarie: A Journey of Intentional Holiness, and What the Prayers of Jesus Tell Us About the Heart of God.