Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño appoints Rev. Darren Cowdrey as Interim Director of Camping and Retreat & Young People’s Ministries

September 22, 2021 | by Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño

Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño appoints Rev. Darren Cowdrey as Interim Director of Camping and Retreat & Young People’s Ministries

Friends, I am pleased to announce the appointment of the Rev. Darren Cowdrey as the Interim Director of Camping and Retreat & Young People’s Ministries. Rev. Cowdrey began his appointment to this position on September 7th and will serve through the remainder of this appointment year. He is an Elder in the California-Pacific Conference where he served pastoral appointments in Orange and Los Angeles Counties.

Rev. Cowdrey is a native Californian and is familiar with the California-Nevada Conference. After completing his undergraduate degree in English from the University of California, Irvine, Darren completed his Master of Divinity degree at Pacific School of Religion while serving as the Youth Director at the San Ramon Valley UMC.  He is credited with leading the youth ministry at San Ramon Valley UMC to growth and vitality.  His effectiveness led to his first appointment being made to this same church. He also served in pastoral appointments focused on youth ministry in Austin, Texas and in Southern California. He brings a rich experience in camping ministry having served in connectional leadership positions both in district and conference camping programs.  He has long partnered with the Sierra Service Project leading young people to a deeper understanding of our United Methodist commitment to social holiness.  He has led young people in mission trips nationally and internationally throughout his ministry.

Rev. Jorge Domingues who as Executive Director of Connectional Ministries will serve as Darren’s supervisor shares that “Rev. Darren comes to us at an exciting time of transition, when we are looking towards a new vision for our ministries with young people and camping ministries. We are slowly coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic and resuming in-person activities, and we foresee the challenges and opportunities ahead of us. As we renew the leadership of the young people’s and camping ministries, it is gratifying to have a person with Rev. Cowdrey’s experience to serve as our interim director for the next few months. This transition will allow us to engage all of those involved in these ministries in shaping that future.”

Rev. Cowdrey says that there is “joy in his heart as he comes to partner with us in this important ministry.”  He affirms that “ministry to Young People is an integral and essential part of our call and ministry as United Methodists” and is eager to seek out and walk a pathway to vibrancy in this ministry with our younger leaders.  He also holds up Camping and Retreat ministries as a means to deepen our mission as those who serve Christ and invite others to do the same.   
While serving in the California-Pacific Conference I had the opportunity to know and observe Darren’s ministry.  I found him to be collegial and hard-working, a team member filled with commitment and joy in the work of making disciples of Jesus Christ and transforming the Church and the world.

Darren is married to Brenda Cowdrey.  They have two adult children, Miranda, and Joseph.  He is an avid sports fan, golfer, along with his keen interest in film and television as theological vehicles. Darren can be reached at the Conference Center in West Sacramento at 916-374-1500 or at

Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño is Resident Bishop of the San Francisco area and the California-Nevada Conference of The United Methodist Church.