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Bishop's Biography - Full Version

Bishop Ken Carter's Biography - Full Version

Kenneth H. Carter
Resident Bishop of the Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church

Kenneth H. Carter, Jr. is serving in his tenth year as resident bishop of The Florida Conference of The United Methodist Church. Along with the Cabinet, he gives pastoral and administrative leadership to over 800 congregations, fresh expressions of church, campus ministries and outreach initiatives in an episcopal area that stretches from Tallahassee and Jacksonville to Miami and the Keys.

Bishop Carter served as the president of the Council of Bishops of The United Methodist Church from 2018-2020, and he was one of three moderators of The Commission on a Way Forward, from 2016 to 2018. In addition to his responsibilities with The Florida Conference, he serves as the bishop the Western North Carolina Conference of The United Methodist Church and as bishop-in-residence and a consulting faculty member at Duke University Divinity School.

Bishop Carter is author of 18 books, most recently a memoir, “God Will Make a Way” (Abingdon, 2021). He has also written two books on the Fresh Expressions movement with Audrey Warren: “Fresh Expressions: A New Kind of Methodist Church” (Abingdon, 2017), and “Fresh Expressions of People Over Property” (Abingdon, 2020). His editorials have appeared in the Tampa Bay Times, Orlando Sentinel and Tallahassee Democrat, and his commentary on Christianity in the United States has appeared in The New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times and on National Public Radio.

Bishop Carter has preached in 20 countries on four continents. He was a local church pastor for 28 years. His ministry at Providence United Methodist Church in Charlotte, North Carolina was described by the American Religious Historian in her book, “Christianity for the Rest of Us.” He has served on the Boards of Trustees of Brevard College, Bethune-Cookman University, Florida Southern College, and the Russia Moscow United Methodist Seminary, on the Board of Visitors of Duke Divinity School, and on the Institutional Review Board of the Wake Forest University School of Medicine. He earned degrees from Columbus College, Duke Divinity School, the University of Virginia and Princeton Theological Seminary. 

His great hope for the church is that she will rediscover an orthodox Christian faith which offers the radically inclusive grace of God to all people, and at the same time calls every follower of Jesus to inner holiness, missional compassion, justice rooted in the gospel and hopeful witness. He travels extensively across the state, preaching in local churches and encouraging lay and clergy leaders.  

Bishop Carter and his wife Pam have been married for over 40 years. Pam has served as an ordained elder in The United Methodist Church, most recently in disaster recovery. They are blessed with two adult daughters: Liz, a professor of Chinese at Western Washington University, and Abby, chief officer for communications and marketing at the University of Tennessee Southern. Abby and her husband Allen are parents of Paige and Natalie, the bishop’s granddaughters.

In this season of assignment to two episcopal areas, the Carters reside in Tampa, Florida and Charlotte, North Carolina and consider it a great blessing to serve the people of the Florida Conference.

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More about the Bishop

Photo of Bishop Carter
Bishop Carter's Sermon from Installation Service Sept 15, 2012
Bishop Carter's Sermon from Installation Service Sept 15, 2012 - Spanish translation by Dr. Leo Rodriguez
Video - Bishop Carter Installation Service Sermon