Life Church of the Nazarene
Love. Grow. Serve.


At LifeChurch, we focus on loving, growing and serving- Together.


LifeChurch of the Nazarene has been serving the Watertown and Jefferson County community for Christ for over 75 years.  

The Church of the Nazarene denomination was organized in 1908, and is driven by a passion for helping 'the least of these' here, and around the world.  For more information on the history, beliefs and practices of the Church of the Nazarene, visit




If you have questions or would like to touch base with someone from the church, call us;  

(315) 782-3840



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Lead Pastor

 Pastor Bob Tharp


Ministry Experience

Bob and Julie have served in Kansas and Indiana as full-time youth/college ministers.  Bob most recently served as Lead Pastor in Coldwater, Michigan.  He and Julie moved to Watertown, NY in January of 2017.

Activities & Affiliations

The Tharp's have two grown sons; Cameron and his wife Anna live in Kansas City, and Alex and his wife Sarah live in Waco, Texas.

Julie works as a Physical Therapist Assistant and enjoys reading, exploring and singing.

Bob enjoys exploring, photography and riding his motorcycle.




Pastor to Children and Their Families

Pastor Ron Graeflin

Ron loves helping children, their families, and children’s leaders reach their greatest potential in serving Jesus and being an extension of God’s love to the world in which they live.  He believes that God is passionate about empowering all that are willing to be fully devoted followers of God.  He is most grateful for the ongoing victorious relationship God allows us to have with Him that far exceeds any other experience in life.

Ron and his wife Sheryl are graduates of Olivet Nazarene University and both have been ordained in the Church of the Nazarene.  Ron has pastored children and their families for 40 years.  Sheryl teaches elementary education in the public schools and private piano at home.  Their incredible adult children, Zac and Abby, are continuing their education in Texas.

Ron enjoys laughing and interacting with people of all ages. He enjoys family time especially with games, cooking, movies, hiking and special events





Worship Leader and Office Manager

Terri Ward

Terri works as our Contemporary Worship Director, Worship Leader and Office Manager.  She has served in several capacities in Children's, Youth and Music ministries.  She is married to Ronnie and has two adult children, Paige and Laice-Mae.  Terri enjoys writing, painting and the creative arts.  



Pastor to Youth

Pastor Michelle Matteson

Michelle is our bi-vocational Youth Pastor.  She is also a Science Teacher at the Indian River Middle School.  Michelle is married to Micah and has three children, Leah, Sadie and Isaac.  Michelle enjoys cake making and spending quality time with her young children.


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Pastor of Visitation and Congregational Care

Pastor Walter MacPherson

Pastor Walter MacPherson visits our homebound and hospitalized congregants, and cares for congregants in nursing care facilities.  Pastor Walter is a wonderful example of faithfulness to the Lord and enjoys collecting stamps and living on the River.