Pastor Search Banner Elk Presbyterian Church

During late 2023 and early 2024, the Banner Elk Presbyterian Church Pastor Nominating Committee (PNC) is leading the search for the next Pastor of our vibrant congregation! The PNC invites your prayers for wisdom and discernment.

Members of the PNC are Murry Haber and Bob Todd (Co-chairs), Nancy Owen, Ginger Bruce, Ellen Stapleton, William Dethlefs, A.C. Marriott, Rev. Whit Malone.

Please reach out to the PNC with comments or questions:

The Ministry Discernment Profile (MDP) describes BPEC and what we are looking for in our next Pastor. Download the MDR here.

Below is a brief overview of our church for potential job candidates:

Who Are We?

Elevated in faith and service to God – inwardly strong and outwardly focused.

Our church’s greatest strength is its people. We are friendly and welcoming. We care for one another and genuinely enjoy spending time together. Most of our members are energetic retirees, though we also have college students and families with children. Because of our inviting mountain setting, we have full-time members, seasonal members, and many visitors. Worship attendance is strong all year, and nearly doubles in the summer. We want BEPC to be welcoming church home to people of all ages, traditions, and theological viewpoints.

During the week, our building bustles with children in our Preschool, members gathering to make comforters and prayer shaws, choirs rehearsing and busy bees working on current outreach projects.

This vision begins in the sanctuary where we are reminded of our founders’ guiding vision to be Christ’s servants “In the mountains, of the mountains, for the mountains.” Worship nurtures our life together – including special services for Kirkin’ O’ The Tartans, Easter and Advent. Our members express high satisfaction with the exceptional sermons and music, all set in a beautiful historic sanctuary. From there, we send our members out into Avery County and beyond to use those gifts.

As we look to the future, we will work to provide additional opportunities for Christian education and spiritual formation, deepening relationships among our varied members, and hands-on mission. We also want to continue hosting community events to open our doors more to our neighbors – including move-in weekend for college students and the Community Carol Sing. Our marketing team creates both print and digital content to engage both members and potential visitors. See our Marketing Recap for 2023.

Modern churches are challenged by cultural change, declining membership, and polarizing issues. By contrast, BEPC is blessed to be growing in membership and enthusiasm; especially as active and talented retirees move here. During 2023, we welcomed hundreds of visitors.

Read about some of our recent local and international missions projects: Firehouse Fundraiser | Stoves for Guatemala | Food Boxes for Ukraine

Where Are We in North Carolina?

Banner Elk Presbyterian Church nestles at 3,700 feet in the valley of Beech Mountain, Sugar Mountain, and Grandfather Mountain in the town of Banner Elk. Our beautiful stone church is adjoins the campus of Lees-McRae College, with which it shares a strong Presbyterian heritage stretching back 130 years. Since our founding, we have heeded calls to mission that have regularly sent us outside our walls.

Banner Elk NC

Photo: The X marks the spot of our church building, located adjacent to the growing Lees-McRae College campus – between the mile-high peak of Beech Mountain (left) and the scenic Elk River (right).

Banner Elk is a vacation destination for outdoor enthusiasts in every season. Many affiliate members and regular visitors live elsewhere most of the year and have second homes in the local mountains. In fact, about 70% of the homes in town and the surrounding private communities are second homes. Banner Elk is known for its striking natural beauty, its quaint downtown, its outdoor recreational options, its relaxed pace of life, and its many cultural opportunities.

We know we are blessed to live and vacation here, but we also know that significant human need lies just outside our door. Since our founding by Rev. Edgar Tufts, whenever BEPC has seen a need, we have heard God’s call to meet that need. Mission is central to us – here at home, in our Presbytery, and with our sister churches in Guatemala and Malawi.

See our Annual Report 2023 for more details on work of our Committees.

Banner Elk Presbyterian Church

Photo: Banner Elk residents enjoy “resort living” all year, including summer favorites such as Concerts in the Park and the July 4th Parade. In winter, we are one of top ski towns in the East with Beech Mountain & Sugar Mountain overlooking our town. Our “Small Town Christmas” is extra festive. See the official Banner Elk Travel Guide to see all the fun things to do.

Church History

Our church has a fascinating story that began in 1893. The Rev. Edgar Tufts arrived in Banner Elk in 1895 to begin his lifelong work of service to the people of this remote area. In addition to rallying the town to build our stone church in 1914, he was responsible for founding Lees-McRae College, Grandfather Home for Children and Cannon Memorial Hospital. He was also instrumental in the formation of Avery County, establishing a bank and even bringing electricity to town. Read our Church History.

More Updates

Watch our livestream worship services on our YouTube Channel and follow us on Facebook for frequent updates, photos and music videos. Interested in applying? Email our PNC: