0613 Holly Family Bluff Park UMC
Mike Holly, pictured with his family, will begin serving as the senior pastor at Bluff Park United Methodist this month.
After serving as senior pastor for Bluff Park United Methodist Church since 1991, Reid Crotty is retiring. The 63-year-old pastor said the decision was made more than four years ago when he and his wife, Martha, aimed to retire together in 2013.
Crotty’s plans are simple – to travel.
“When you’ve been working on weekends for 22 years, you don’t get to do a lot of sightseeing,” he said. “My wife and I plan to go many places in our retirement and see what turns up.”
In his tenure at Bluff Park United Methodist, Crotty said the church has grown, a new sanctuary has been built and his congregation has taken advantage of participating in many mission endeavors.
He said he’ll miss his interactions with people the most.
“Being a senior pastor means you never know whom you’re going to meet on a given day,” he said. “In the morning you may be visiting a hospital to see a newborn baby, and that afternoon, you’re conducting a funeral.”
Mike Holly will assume the role as senior pastor at the church on June 12. Crotty called Holly one of the most outstanding young ministers in the area.
Holly is 34 years old, making him an excellent addition for the younger families attending Bluff Park United Methodist, he said.
Holly will move to Bluff Park United Methodist after serving as the associate pastor for contemporary worship at Canterbury United Methodist Church in Mountain Brook for more than two years.
Holly said he is aware the shoes left for him to fill at Bluff Park are big.
“Very rarely do you get to stay with a church for 22 years this day and age,” he said. “I definitely feel the pressure to succeed for my first head pastor position.”
The main difference between his position at Canterbury and his new role as head pastor is he will be taking the majority of responsibilities when his new church makes decisions, he said. He knows the job will come with more meetings and accountability, but he’s prepared.
Holly’s wife, Julie, has been the head pastor at Discovery United Methodist Church for the past five years. As Mike Holly takes on his new role at Bluff Park, his wife will be taking the position he formerly had at Canterbury.
“It’s nice to be married to someone who knows the importance of this role in a church from personal experience,” Holly said. “Julie leaned on me whenever she needed help. Now I’ll need her to coach me, and I can only see myself benefitting from a wife that’s had the job before.”
Holly looks to thrive at his new position at Bluff Park by learning from Crotty’s success and building relationships with the community in his new church home.
The experience is brand new to him, and he hopes it leads to something unexpected.