The Interview: Jimmy Ellison
This month, The Paper publishes its Q&A with Jimmy Ellison, pastor of the Newnan City Church in downtown Newnan.
Briefly describe yourself and what you do/did.
My name is Jimmy Ellison and I was born and reared in Tyrone, GA. I am married to the former Beth Parrish and we have two sons, Will (26) and Ben (23). I am an ordained pastor in the Free Methodist Church and currently pastor of Newnan City Church, located in the heart of downtown Newnan.
Best piece of advice you’ve received.
Own your decisions. Take responsibility for your life.
If I had it to do over …
I would do a better job keeping a daily journal.
You are going on an extended solo trip. What three albums and three books would you take?
Albums … 1) Hotel California by the Eagles, 2) The Essential Alabama by Alabama, 3) Drive by Alan Jackson.
Books … 1) The Bible, 2) Run with the Horsemen by Dr. Ferrol Sams, 3) In the Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day by Mark Batterson.
Tell us one thing about yourself that few people know.
I am in the McIntosh High School Athletic Hall of Fame.
You are hosting a dinner party for six. What five people, living or dead, would you invite and why?
Beth—she’s my wife and would be in charge of decorating and preparing the meal.
John Wesley—I’m a Methodist pastor and would enjoy hearing Mr. Wesley’s thoughts on our current society.
Samuel Ellison—my great, great grandfather. He settled the Ellisons in Tyrone, GA in the mid 1800s including being one of the families to start the Hopewell Methodist Church.
Martin Luther King, Jr.—Truly shaped the course of American history without being a politician.
George W. Bush—He’s my favorite President in recent history.
Name an as yet unfulfilled dream.
I want to do a pull-up in my 50s.
If you weren’t doing what you are, you would be …
I’d be a songwriter living in Nashville.
Your go-to food.
American hamburger and sweet potato fries.
Top Gun, Stand By Me, Breakfast Club.
Dogs or cats?
I’m a dog guy. I currently have a black lab, pit-bull mix, named Dubya (as in George W. Bush).
Your favorite quote and why.
“Just Do It”—Nike slogan. I believe God has a bias towards action.
Name something that you are extremely glad you did or accomplished.
I have been married for 30+ years to Beth. I see this as my greatest accomplishment in life. Planning on 50+.
What advice would you give your younger self just starting out on their own.
The more disciplined you are, the more freedom you will have in the future.