Phone: (317) 931-2308
Gary M. Schaar is the South District Superintendent for the United Methodist Church in Indiana. He recently served as Associate Director for Congregational Development for the South Indiana Conference of the United Methodist Church. He is a graduate of the University of Evansville (BA in Music and Associated Studies [Pre-Theology], 1978), Christian Theological Seminary (MDiv, 1981), and Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary (DMin in Interim Ministry, 2007). He has a certificate in Total Quality Management from University of Southern Indiana and a certificate in Not-for-Profit Management from Indiana University.
Schaar was ordained an elder in 1982. He was the associate pastor of Mount Vernon First UMC (1981-1983), the pastor of Cloverdale UMC (1984-1987), Paoli UMC (1987-1991), and Old North UMC in Evansville (1991-2001). In 2001 he was appointed to the conference staff. He served first at the “conflict manager” (2001-2006) and in 2006 assumed the congregational development portfolio. Schaar has chaired the Division on Worship and the Board of Discipleship for the South Indiana Conference. He coordinated worship for annual conference for twelve years. In the spring of 2007 he taught the second section of “Administration” for the Indiana Course of Study.
Schaar’s sermon “You Can Run, but Can’t Hide” was included in Keeping the Faith: Best Indiana Sermons (Guild Press, 1993). His doctoral work explored the conflict and its affect on the church family system experienced while struggling between church sizes. The study revealed that churches existing just below the 150-200 attendance range are adversely affected by the perceived expectations of The Book of Discipline and the homeostatic pressure to remain a single cell unit.