The United Methodist Church of Patchogue



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About Our Pastor

     The Rev. Dr. Charles Ferrara says  his military experience as a Special Forces Commander and his 16 years in the New York City Police Department provided valuable experience for his ministry. They taught him the skills of teamwork and cooperation.

     Dr. Ferrara—he prefers Pastor Chuck says teamwork and a cooperative effort are  his priorities.

     He was born in Brooklyn May 8, 1949, raised a Catholic, and entered the U.S. Army immediately out of high school, in 1966. His duty tours included Korea, The United Kingdom, Germany and the Netherlands and as a Captain, commanded a 12 member Airborne Special Forces A-Team Detachment.

     He joined the New York Police Department in 1970, serving as a Patrolman, Narcotics Investigator, Patrol Sergeant,  then Plain Clothes Sergeant and Lieutenant.

     His police time was marked by both highs and lows. He fondly remembers, as a Lieutenant, in October 1979, his privileged duty as a member of Pope John Paul II’s city security detail during the Pontiff’s visits to the United Nations, Madison Square Garden and Shea and Yankee stadiums. Two months later, he was a personal protector of Cardinal Terrance Cooke at Christmas Midnight Mass at St. Patrick's Cathedral.

     Things turned uglier a week later while he was working crowd control on New Year’s Eve in Times Square. Breaking up a scuffle, his finger was nearly bitten off. In the following month of January, the godfather of one of his two daughters was shot in Brooklyn. The next month, one of his partners was killed while they were both in a shootout in Harlem.

     Pastor Chuck and his wife, Myong Cha, have been together for 48 years. He was 18 when they married. They have two daughters and eight grandchildren. It was Myong Cha who led him to the ministry. He became a youth pastor at her Korean Methodist Church. He says he resisted the pastor there for three years but, convinced he had a calling, finally gave in.

     Ferrara, who graduated  in 1975 from the New York Institute of Technology in Westbury with degrees in Police Science and Criminal Justice, entered theology school at Drew University in Madison New Jersey. He combined his studies with police duties for a year before leaving the force. He graduated from Drew in 1988. He received his Doctorate degree from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1996.

     Over the years, his pastoral duties took him to Glen Cove, Hamden, Ct., Sayville, and, for 12 years in New Fairfield, Ct. In 2012, he retired from there to a house in Bellport. The Bishop brought him out of retirement in 2014 to serve Bellmore UMC in Nassau County, then to Patchogue.

     Pastor Chuck’s sermons are down to earth and related to ordinary life. He tells the story of his start at New Fairfield,  near Yale University, in a church attended by many PhD’s. He felt the need to fill his sermons with gems of intellect. His wife told him to “cut it out” and one of the PhD’s said “thank you” when he did.

     Ferrara is the author of two books, Beyond the Badge: A Spiritual Survival Guide for Cops and Their Families and Fifth Generation Covenant: A Challenged Code of Honor. He serves as Senior Vice  Commander of East Patchogue Post 8300, Veterans of Foreign Wars.

     In his spare time, Chuck is an accomplished oil and acrylic painter.

     He also likes to read and to ride his motorcycle.


ã 2015 United Methodist Church of Patchogue