He serves as our“Dean” for the Institute for Spiritual Growth at First Church, as a Bible teacher, spiritual coach and writer of curriculum for instructional programs. 


He was one of the first MCC trained Supervisors of Clergy and today continues to help to shape the lives of those called to full time ministry.

​​​He is the father of two children, Jordan Graetz  and Jillian Toppen, grandfather to five grandchildren and shares his life with his partner Robert Mixon, their horse “Lily” and cat “Teddy”


He is an open door Pastor with a heart for his congregation. His door is open to you for spiritual guidance and prayerful support. You will find that Rev. Graetz shares his passion for living and loving God in uplifting and empowering sermons and day to day conversation.


He shares that his desire is “that all may come to know God’s inclusive love and the abundant life…full of possibilities; that is available to each and everyone”.

He comes to Atlanta with a rich background in multicultural ministry having served congregations in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, Kisumu, Kenya, Bombay, India, Bangkok, Thailand, Hong Kong, Nassau, Bahamas, Mexico City, Mexico and Brighton England.


He was ordained in the Assemblies of God denomination in May of 1978 after completing his seminary work at Trinity Bible College and North Central University. In 1993 he transferred his credentials and ordination to the Metropolitan Community Churches. 

One of Rev. Paul’s favorite scripture passages is:

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”-Philippians 4:13

About our Senior Pastor 

Rev. Dr. Paul Graetz, D. Div. D.R. S.

An avid student he has studied Ancient Wisdom a precursor to the times of Jesus with Kabbalah University for two years culminating with a study tour of Israel. Rev. Paul went on to receive a Doctor of Divinity in 2013 and in 2014 a second Doctorate this time, in Religious Studies both from Emerson. 

​Rev. Graetz, has been an educator of Pastors, a Bible teacher and field instructor, a director of global ministries and inspirational preacher. He was selected by the Assemblies of God to oversee 26 congregations as a district official and since coming to MCC he has served in various denominational committees, district and regional positions.

Rev. Dr. Paul Graetz, known as “Rev. Paul” accepted the call of God to become First MCC’s tenth Pastor in July of 2000.  After conducting a nationwide search the pastoral search team, recommended him to the congregation and he was elected by overwhelming majority to serve as our shepherd.

 Rev. Graetz previously served a growing congregation for 7 years as the Senior Pastor at All God’s Children Metropolitan Community Church, Minneapolis, MN