Ministry Information Form Query

MIF #: 20960.AC0

Ministry General Information

Ministry Number 20960
Ministry Name Sweetwater Presbyterian Church PCUSA
Mailing Address 500 21st St. SE
Hickory, NC 28602
Phone (828) 381-2549
WWW Address
Ministry Size Under 100 members
Ethnic Composition Asian 2%
Hispanic Latino/Latina, Spanish 5%
White 93%
Average Worship Attendance 35
Church School Attendance 22
Yoked Church False
Community Type Suburban
Last Information from Statistics of the Church  * (  Show Statistics  )
* Data availability is not guaranteed

Information about the position

Position:   Solo Pastor
Experience Required:   0 to 2 Years
Specific Title:   Pastor
Employment Status:   Full-time
Language Requirements:   English
Other Languages:  
Statement Of Faith Required:   Yes
Clergy Couples:   No
Training/Certificate Requirements:  
Other Training:  
Brief Church Mission Statement:
The mission of Sweetwater Presbyterian Church is to glorify God through our ministries including:  Worship, Sunday School, Youth Ministries, Mission, and Women’s Ministries.  We seek to know God through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and to be disciples of God by serving each other, our community, and the world. 
What is the congregation’s or organization’s vision for ministry? Additionally describe how this vision is lived out.
Sweetwater will continue to reach people of all ages with the “Good News” through message and action, acting as disciples of Christ by serving the congregation, community, and world. Faced with the challenges of the pandemic, Sweetwater continues to search for new ways to connect beyond the physical space. We look to enhance our adult discussion groups and Sunday school for all ages. Sweetwater has a strong Presbyterian Women’s group, hosting various events throughout the year. Tuesday prayer group with Bible study and prayer time, looks for new ways to expand their reach. Music is a very important part of the life of Sweetwater, such as our youth and adult choir programs sharing God’s word through song. Serving the local and world community through a variety of mission projects. On the second Sunday each month, during song our Church’s children present non-perishable food items brought in by the congregation to assist Cooperative Christian Ministries. Other outreach projects include delivering Safe Harbor meals each month, at least twice per year providing the Community Meal at First Presbyterian Church in Newton, collecting supplies for teachers and students in our local schools, and assisting Habitat for Humanity. We spiritually and financially support the Grandfather Home and Presbyterian Home for Children, Hospice, and Presbyterian missionaries. We strive to host a variety of events in our fellowship hall throughout the year to minister to our congregation and community. 
How do you feel called to reach out to address the emerging needs of your community or constituency?
Founded in 1946 as a small community mission church, Sweetwater’s congregation continues to reflect the families of those original core members while connecting to families new to the Hickory area. We are a very compassionate, caring, and friendly church with a deep love and commitment to our Lord and Savior.  Members in our congregation lead Sunday school classes, prayer groups, women’s meetings, and worship services.  Church members serve on one or more of the committees set up to plan special activities and celebrations such as “Souper” Bowl Lunches, Spring and Fall Clean-ups, Ice Cream Socials, Rally Days, Stewardship Sundays, and the Church Birthday Celebrations.  The church year is also filled with special worship services that renew our faith and help us grow spiritually.  We look forward to continuing Candlelight/Christmas Eve Services, Ash Wednesdays, Maundy Thursdays, Easter Sunrise Services, Worldwide Communion Sundays, Stewardship Sundays, and Thanksgiving Eve Services. As we have been able to return to many in person activities, we look to continue to increase our presence online. We look forward to making a stronger connection to our neighbors while expanding our reach out into the larger Catawba County area. We look forward to developing a stronger connection to the Presbyterian churches in the area, while also working with other denominations and non-profit organizations. 
How will this position help you to reach your vision and mission goals?
As the centerpiece of Presbyterian traditions, the Sunday services as well as the special services mesh all the other missions, programs and activities together in spreading the “Good News.”  The minister will nurture and inspire the congregation by providing pastoral care; visiting with the sick, our homebound as well as perspective and existing members.  The minister would also work with the elders and other leaders within the congregation in strengthening our children’s and youth programs, the music program, prayer group, and Sunday school program.  We expect the minister to assist in prioritizing other areas of great importance through mission and outreach by continuing support of missions both locally and worldwide. Included in all these areas of importance will be the increasing access through an online presence and communication. Renew and/or establish connections with area Presbyterian churches, other denominations and non-profit organizations will be another area of expectations. Finally, with consideration of the minister’s personal time, they will be expected to have specific office hours.  
Provide a description of the characteristics needed by the person who is open to being called to this congregation and or organization.
The candidate being called by God to lead the congregation of Sweetwater will be inspired by the teachings of Jesus and filled with the Holy Spirit. The individual should be innovative and creative, mixing traditional with new ideas without losing focus of God’s message of love. Listening and guiding our children, youth, young adults and elder adults; assuring them of God’s unfailing love and forgiveness is an is an important part of this ministry. A visionary, who can inspire the congregation to strengthen existing programs while building new programs within the church and community is an expectation.  We are a small church, large in faith and love praying for a minister who will bring creative ideas and a renewed energy to our congregation. 
What specific tasks, assignments, and program areas will this person have responsibility?
The pastor’s primary responsibilities would include leading Sunday service as well as special services held throughout the year. Even as a small church, Sweetwater can be guided in big ways to meet the needs of its members, the community, and presbytery. The pastor is the center of all programs that connect us as a congregation and community. A small church can provide a more personal connection with fellow Christians as well as providing a more defined sense of how each individual sees their unique purpose in God’s world. The pastor would guide the church in discipleship through working with the community and other area churches. Also, work with the elders and other leaders within the congregation in strengthening our children’s and youth programs, the music program, prayer group, and Sunday school program. The minister will be expected to have specific office hours to take care of administrative duties related to church members, the community and presbytery. 
Optional Links
Sweetwater Presbyterian Church:
City of Hickory:
Northminister Presbyterian Church:
Hickory Visitors Bureau:
Leadership Competencies:
Preaching and Worship Leadership
Media Communicator
Willingness to Engage Conflict
Decision Making
Strategy and Vision
Interpersonal Engagement
Compensation and Housing:   (Cost of Living Calculator)
Minimum Effective Salary: $47,680   (Effective Salary Definition)
Housing Type: Manse
Name Relation
Barbara Ross
114 Silver Creek Road Morganton, NC 28655
Presbytery Associate
Robert Lee (Lee) Combs, Jr
818 45th Ave. Lane NE Hickory, NC 28601
(828) 244-3557
Community Business Leader
Russ and Marcia Reiley
3806 Sarazen Court NE Conover, NC 28613
(828) 612-5243 (Russ)
Former Interim Co-Pastors
Has the Pastor Nominating Committee and Search committee affirmed its intention to follow the Form of Government in this regard?
Deadline date for this MIF:  (none)
Version Track Info: This MIF was last updated on   3/1/2022

Self-referral Contact Information

EP:   Rev Byron Wade Address  114 Silver Creek Rd., Morganton, NC, 28655
Daytime Phone  ‭(828) 430-1515‬ Office Phone  828-438-4217
Fax  828-437-8655 Email
PNC:  Gerald W. Finney Address  2272 Horseshoe Bend NE Hickory, NC 28601
Daytime Phone  (828)256-9125 (Gerald) Office Phone  (828)320-5619 (Ray Combs)
Fax  Email