Founding and Senior Pastor of Gentle Spirit Christian Church of Atlanta, Georgia, Rev. Paul M. Turner accepted the calling in 2019 to be Editor-in-Chief of Whosoever after serving as its Vice President for many years, authoring the Seeds of Hope column.
A native midwesterner who was raised in the United Methodist Church, Rev. Turner felt, even as a young child, a call to pastoral ministry. He majored in Theology and minored in Psychology at Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington, Illinois. He left prior to graduation when the nature of his sexual orientation became clear to him and church officials informed him that he could not be ordained within the United Methodist Church.
After being out of the church for six years, Rev. Turner discovered the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches in June of 1982. He pastored MCC congregations in Ohio and Georgia until 1995, when he was called by and became the Senior Pastor of Abundant Grace Community Church of Atlanta, an independent Christian church with a mission “to bring the message of redemption and grace to those people who have been victims of oppression, rejection and misinformation and to assure them they are true heirs in the realm of God.”
In the spring of 1998, Rev. Paul M. Turner founded Gentle Spirit Christian Church.
Currently Rev. Turner serves as board president for the Southern Crescent Umpires Association for Amateur Softball Association of America, for whom he calls both slow- and fast-pitch softball games in several divisions.
Rev. Turner and his partner, Bill, celebrated their 33rd anniversary in June 2015, the same month that the Supreme Court made marriage equality the law of the land, and they legally tied the knot on November 21, 2015. They are proud residents of East Decatur, where their family includes a 12 year old lab, Coco NoNo, a young 4 year old Border Collie, Rowdy, two 14 year old cockatiels named Charlie and Rose, and a 25 year old Catalina Macaw named Jimmy.