Rev. Bobby Knowles was born in Port Arthur, Texas, and raised to have the heart of a servant. As pastor of Orchard United Methodist Church, he has been involved in helping those in need, and that heart of a servant is stronger than ever today.
That heart has also changed – and seen changes – in Orchard United Methodist Church since its founding in 1915 by The Reverand Ben Behrensen. At the time, Behrensen was a student at the Methodist School in Brenham, Texas. The church was originally part of the German Methodist Conference and the Northern Episcopal Church Conference. “At that time,” Knowles explained, “pastors in the conference were required to speak German even though the services were in English.”
Fast-forward to 2017, when Knowles was appointed to Orchard UMC after serving as the Associate Pastor at Fulshear United Methodist Church. “Pastor Bobby” has since shared his everlasting love for God and the Bible with his parishioners. The church’s mission, which he strives to promote, is “To make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of our community and our world.”
As part of their outreach efforts, the church hosts Seniors Day every Monday from 10 am-12 pm in the church’s fellowship room, where seniors can enjoy socializing while playing dominoes and eating lunch. Since the pandemic, the church has been holding virtual service every Sunday on YouTube at 9:00 am. Their plan is to return to the building on September 6 for live service with the proper precautions in place.
This year, Knowles has spread his wings beyond the church building. “Not being able to sit still for long, I decided to extend my love for helping people by opening Smooth Transitions of Southeast Texas. This is a senior move management and transition company that helps those in their senior years, veterans and anyone that needs help downsizing before a move, including decluttering, organizing, making moving arrangements, packing and unpacking, and managing a move day. We will then set up your new home and offer estate sales, auctions and donations. We even help clients put all of their treasured photos on a digital format.”
Knowles’ group also offers aging in place services for those who aren’t moving but still need the services in order to declutter or downsize.
Knowles clearly has his hands full pastoring Orchard UMC, running his new business, and spending time with the two loves of his life: his wife Christy Knowles, a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner for Texas Children’s Pediatrics, and sports, especially college football and the Astros! He also enjoys the 9 children and 11 grandchildren he and his wife share between them.
Knowles shared a quote that reveals the foundation to all he has and does in his life: “In essential beliefs we have unity, in non-essential beliefs we have liberty, and in all beliefs we have charity.” – John Wesley, Founder to the Methodist movement.