Latter-day Saints welcome new bishop

The Jasper ward (congregation) of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter -day Saints has a new bishop.

Matt Bland succeeds Chris Kelly, who served as bishop for five years. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a lay ministry. Bishops and other local leaders serve voluntarily, without pay, in addition to family, employment and other community responsibilities. Members do not request specific positions. Instead, local leaders extend assignments.

After Bland indicated his willingness to serve in this capacity, his name was presented to the Jasper congregation, of approximately 336 members, for approval. Bishop Bland has lived in Jasper with his wife, Amy Lynn, and their three children for almost nine years. He is currently a division manager with Jasper Engines and Transmissions and serves on the board of directors for Jasper Endows Today and Tomorrow.

Bishop Bland served a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Nicaragua from 2003 to 2005. Jasper residents Matt Scott, Big O Tires, and Charlie McCrady, Jasper Engines, are serving with Bishop Bland as counselors.  They will help carry out the responsibility of ministering to the spiritual and temporal needs of the congregation.

The Jasper congregation meets at 10 a.m. at the church, which is located at 1665 St. Charles St., Jasper. Visitors are always welcome.

For more information, contact Christie Kasteler at or call 812-989-4916.

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