Meet Our Pastor…

The Reverend Dr. Theophilus J. Stanford was born in Dalton, Georgia to Rev. Andrew R. Stanford (deceased) and Ruth P. Stanford.  He received his early education in Newnan, Georgia.

He earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology in Industrial Management.  He continued his studies at Gammon Theological Seminary at The Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, earning a Master of Divinity in Old Testament Studies and Worship. He later earned his Doctor of Ministry from Columbia Seminary in Church and Society.

Dr. Stanford served for over 20 years as a Director of Music. After hearing and accepting the call to pastoral ministry, he began pastoring 21 years ago as Associate Pastor of Worship & Music at Ousley UMC, Lithonia (3 years).  As lead pastor he has served the Oak Hill Parish, Covington (3 years), Glen Haven, Decatur (10 years), and Allgood Road, Stone Mountain (5 years).  Effective July 1, 2020, he became lead pastor of Cliftondale UMC, College Park, Ga.

As an accomplished musician, vocalist, and composer, Dr. Stanford released his first CD project May 2015, entitled, Not Your Battle, with Word of Life, a community choir he founded and directs.  Forever community minded, proceeds from this debut concert went to support the United Methodist Imagine No Malaria project in 2015.  Because music is what brought Dr. Stanford to Christ, he still enjoys sharing his musical gifts as a clinician for worship and music workshops, when time permits.

In 2019, Dr. Stanford was blessed to retire from Delta Airlines in order to pursue his dream of pastoring fulltime. During his tenure at Delta, he led teams in the areas of Marketing, Resource Planning, and Safety Analytics. One of his greatest joys at Delta was leadership of one of Delta’s Employee Engagement Groups where he established the Worldwide One Warm Coat Drive, which during a 10 year period collected and distributed for free over 25,000 coats and other cold weather items to persons in need.


Dr. Stanford loves spending precious time with family and friends, tennis, working out, and traveling. In all that he does, his greatest joy is in sharing God’s promise from Jeremiah 29:11 – God’s plans are to prosper us, not to harm us, and to give us hope and a future!