Pastor Hee-Soon Kwon

Our pastor, Hee-Soon Kwon, is an acknowledged expert in teaching people how to meditate, pray, and deepening relationship with God. She is a commissioned teacher of Centering Prayer, Lectio Divina, and a certified Spiritual Director.

Hee-Soon has pastored Methodist churches not only in California, but also in Iowa and New York. Previously, Hee-Soon was a professor of Pastoral Counseling & Spiritual Formation at the Methodist Theological University in Seoul, Korea. Hee-Soon obtained her master degree in Theology at Perkins School of Theology Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas. Since then, she has studied theology and psychology, obtaining her master’s degree in counseling psychology and a Ph.D. in transpersonal psychology.

Hee-Soon lives in Fremont near the church with her husband, Rev. Hong Ki Kim, Ph.D., a former President of Methodist Theological University, Seoul, Korea. Their elder daughter, Esther is a graduate of Wellesley College, near Boston.  Helen, their younger daughter, is a Stanford graduate and recently graduated with a Ph.D. from Harvard. Helen is currently teaching at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology as an Assistant Professor of American Religious History.

Brent Peterson, Music Director and Organist

Music Director and Organist

Brent has been at First UMC since 2004.  He has served as pianist, organist, or director, at various churches and denominations, almost every Sunday since 1971.  In addition to church work, he has significant choral experience with civic groups including Arizona Opera, Phoenix Symphony Chorus, and locally, Santa Clara Chorale.  Brent received his music degree from Grand Canyon College.

Brent’s wife Rachel is a frequent soloist at First UMC, and his younger son Joshua has played guitar for us.  Brent’s adult son Tom is also a church musician, Director of Music at Christ Church of the Ascension Episcopal in Phoenix, and adjunct music faculty member at Phoenix College.