Christ United Methodist Church
Christ United Methodist Church

Meet the Ministers

United Methodist clergy are called by God to the ordained ministry of Word, Sacrament, Order, and Service. CUMC’s clergy are members of the North Texas Conference of the United Methodist Church.

Reverend Don Underwood is in his 30th year as Senior Pastor of Christ United Methodist Church (CUMC). During his tenure, CUMC has experienced rapid growth, doubling worship and Sunday school attendance. The church places great emphasis on lay ministry and missions, and Rev. Underwood has been intentional in developing an organizational style that focuses on ministry rather than management. Rev. Underwood received his Bachelor’s Degree from Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas and his Master’s of Theology from the Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University in Texas. Rev. Underwood and his wife Bobby have two children, Adam and Joshua. Don enjoys quarter horses, golf, and hunting and is an instrument rated private pilot.

For the last 30 years, Don Underwood’s weekly columns have touched hearts and changed lives. This collection of some of his best reminds readers how God is ever present. To order “The Long View” from, click here. To sign up for these weekly inspirational messages via email,  click here and begin receiving these emails.

Reverend Denise Peckham Reverend Denise Peckham, Executive Minister, came to CUMC from Button Memorial UMC in Little Elm, Texas, where she served as Senior Pastor. Prior to her time at Button Memorial, she spent seven years at Holy Covenant UMC in Carrollton, Texas, first as Children’s Minister, and then as Associate Pastor for Adult Education and Spiritual Formation. Denise holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Manhattanville College in Purchase, New York, and a Master’s of Divinity from SMU’s Perkins School of Theology. Denise and husband John have two children, Nicholas and Thomas. She enjoys reading, traveling, and gardening.
Rev. Chad McSwain Reverend Chad McSwain is the Associate Pastor leading Table of Grace modern worship service. Chad is passionate about helping people know that Jesus is inviting them to the table. Chad has served in ministry for over ten years and most recently served at St. Andrew UMC as Associate Pastor to The Well contemporary service.

Chad received his BA in Philosophy from University of Central Oklahoma, MA in Theology from Fuller Theological Seminary and MDiv from SMU’s Perkins School of Theology in Dallas. Chad is married to Brandi and they have three children, Abigail, Xander and Eliana. Originally from Oklahoma, Chad enjoys Sooner football, movies and comic books.

Reverend Cathy Partridge is the Associate Pastor leading CUMC Princeton. Cathy comes to CUMC from First Frisco UMC where she served as Associate Pastor in October 2009 and became the Executive Associate Pastor in July 2014. She has a passion for people and for ministries which impact the way people live, learn and love, including programs such as Stephen Ministry, DivorceCare and Financial Peace University and serving in the Dallas Emmaus/Chrysalis communities. While at First Frisco UMC, Cathy has worked with the members in starting ministries which bring relief, help, and hope to survivors of severe storms through an UMCOR Early Response Team and to survivors of family violence. Cathy is a Texas native and grew up in Royse City. Prior to answering God’s call to ministry, Cathy worked in the legal field for over 30 years in areas of research, training, human resources and office management. Cathy and her husband Brad have two sons, Mitch Murray and Lance Partridge, and precious grandson, Isaac. Cathy and Brad are both very active people, and especially enjoy spending their time with friends and family. They both enjoy riding bikes, golfing, and anything else that keeps them on the move.
Reverend Bart Smith portrait Reverend Bart Smith is a Pastor Emeritus for CUMC. He was honored with the Emeritus status after serving as a United Methodist Pastor for 50 years and continues to assist the staff at CUMC as needed with funerals and weddings. Bart and his wife Ann have a daughter, son-in-law, and a beautiful grandson. He enjoys golf, traveling and reading.
_DSC4665 Reverend Dr. Alyce M. McKenzie is CUMC’s first Preacher-in-Residence. As Preacher-in-Residence, you will see her in the pulpit at various points throughout the year while she serves as a mentor to the CUMC preaching staff. Dr. McKenzie also serves as Professor of Homiletics at Perkins School of Theology where she holds the George W. and Nell Ayers LeVan Endowed Chair of Preaching and Worship.

Ordained as an elder in the United Methodist Church in 1981, Dr. McKenzie is a member of the North Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. She grew up in New Cumberland, Pennsylvania, and experienced a call to ministry in high school. She majored in religion at Bryn Mawr College near Philadelphia and then headed to Duke Divinity School to study for the ministry.
From 1980-88 she served as an associate pastor at Aldersgate United Methodist Church in York, Pennsylvania. While there she met and married Murry McKenzie. They have 3 children, Melissa, Rebecca and Matt. She received her PHD in Homiletics in 1994 from Princeton Theological Seminary and served as Visiting Lecturer in Homiletics from 1994-1999. Since 2000, Dr. McKenzie has taught preaching at Perkins School of Theology.