Charles White McGehee, his wife Jean and their two boys arrived in Jacksonville early in 1960. For sixteen years, he led the church during the period of growth in which the current church building was built. The church history updated in 2016 still refers to the period of his leadership as the Golden Years.
From the time he arrived, Charles was active in the NAACP, offering support for civil rights efforts in Jacksonville. He preached sermons against the war in Viet Nam, and against nuclear arms, and against Richard Nixon as the Watergate scandal developed, and on many more controversial topics. His presence in Jacksonville had a profound impact.
But perhaps the most remarkable thing about Charles’ ministry was the role Jean played.
Jerome (Jerry) Fosaaen was born in Jacksonville. He has a BBA in Management and a BSH in Health Science from UNF, and completed a Dietetic Internship at St Luke’s Hospital/Mayo Clinic. He is a Registered Dietitian and worked at the Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind in Saint Augustine for over 11 years.
Jerome joined the UUCJ in 1974 and served on the board and taught RE classes. One of his last significant jobs was serving as Chair of the Search Committee in 1998-1999, which selected the Rev. John Young.
Jerome and his wife Christine were members of UUCJ until 2003, when they joined the fellowship in Saint Augustine. He recently completed a term as president of the UUFSA board, his second. For three years he has been researching Charles’ life and ministry.