PASTORAL, PROGRAM & ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF
The Rev. Dr. Samuel Weddington
Senior Pastor and Head of Staff
The Rev. Dr. Sam Weddington joined the community of F.P.C. on August 1, 2018. Sam has served churches in New Jersey, Seoul, South Korea and Virginia. Sam is joined in ministry with his wife Grace, who is also an ordained Presbyterian minister, and two children, Sammy and Joan. His theological passion is Pauline theology, and his doctoral work explored the intersection of new creation, ecology, and modern Protestant evangelicalism. Beyond his doctorate from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, he holds a Master of Theology (Th.M.) from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a Master of Divinity (M.Div.) from Union Presbyterian Seminary. Sam has deep family connections to the Bristol and Abingdon areas.
Church Business Administrator
Robert J. Greene Jr.
Organist / Music Associate
Bob Greene holds degrees from Oberlin College Conservatory of Music and Colgate Rochester Divinity School. He has served as music director and organist for congregations in Florida, New York, Tennessee, and Virginia. His musical compositions include art songs, congregational hymns, choral anthems for adults and children, handbell compositions, church musicals, solo organ pieces, chamber music, electronic music, contemporary Christian music, and a major cantata, The Seven Last Words, based on the passion of Christ. He has received awards and commissions for his instrumental and choral compositions, and he is published by MorningStar Music and Saint James Music Press. Bob joined our staff June 1, 2017. He lives in Bristol, Virginia.
The Rev. Dr. Dave Welch
Minister for Discipleship and Local Mission
Dr. Welch has served First Presbyterian Church as Minister for Discipleship since June 2005. He has served churches in Boone, North Carolina; Louisville, Kentucky; and Douglasville, Georgia. Along with worship, he is interested in all new technology. Dave also serves our community as a member of the Bristol Tennessee Board of Education. He and his wife, Linda, have been married since 1987. He and Linda share experience in youth and college-age ministries. They have three children, Kathryn, Abigail, and Stephen.
Director of Children’s Ministries
Pat Flannagan retired from King University in 2020, having served for 38 years on the faculty at King where he taught music history, conducting, musicology, choir, and voice. Flannagan earned a B.A. in Psychology from King College, B.M. in Church Music and a M.M. in Choral Conducting from Westminster Choir College, and a Ph.D. in Musicology from The Catholic University of America. While a student at Westminster, his mentors were Robert D. Simpson, Erik Routley, Dennis Shrock and Joseph Flummerfelt, and he had opportunities to sing and study with some of the outstanding conductors of the 20th century including Robert Shaw, Leonard Bernstein, Seji Ozawa, Pierre Boulez, Rafael Kubelik, Antal Dorati, et al. Dr. Flannagan is the founding conductor of the Voices of the Mountains, a regional choir associated with The Symphony of the Mountains.
Dr. Flannagan hosted Morten Lauridsen for a residency week at King University in 2008 in preparation for a concert of Mr. Lauridsen’s music. He has trained choirs for 6 different performances at Carnegie Hall, working with conductors such as Timothy Sharp and John Rutter. In April of 2019, Flannagan hosted Tim Sharp for a performance of Tim’s Bluegrass Mass: Come Away to the Skies with the King University Symphonic Choir and the Sanctuary Choir from First Presbyterian Church of Bristol, TN.
The Rev. Jerry Swam Sidi
Director of Contemporary Worship and King Campus Evangelist
We welcome Jeremiah Swam Sidi (Jerry) and his family; Rachael (wife); Davita (daughter); David (son); and Damita (daughter) from Waco, Texas but originally from Kaduna State, Nigeria.
Jerry will be serving in two roles as the Director of Contemporary Worship here at First Pres and the Campus Ministry Coordinator at King University. He brings a wealth of experience as he pursues his Doctorate.
Jerry has a Bachelor of Art in Theology (Pastoral Studies) from Jos ECWA Theological Seminary, Nigeria. Master of Theology ThM. Missiology – Presbyterian University and Theological Seminary Seoul, South Korea. (Master of Christian Ministry) MACM from Baylor University Waco, TX.
He is currently working on his Doctorate at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, KY.
Director of Student Ministries
Katie joined the FPC staff as Director of Student Ministries in the summer of 2012, after serving churches in Abingdon and Atlanta. Her passion for walking with students through their teenage years as they wrestle with faith shines through her work with the youth of FPC and the community. Katie graduated from King University in 2005 with a degree in youth ministry and psychology and earned an MA in Family Ministry from Bethel Seminary in 2016. She has three children, AJ (son), Brady Thomas (son), Wrenley (daughter).
Pastoral Resident and Local Mission Coordinator
We welcome the newest staff member, Justin Miller. The Pastoral Resident program is our church’s two-year, part-time mentoring program in which we walk and work with a candidate as they move toward ordination in the Presbyterian Church USA. Justin comes from Arden, NC where he has served as the Family and Worship minister. He received a Master of Divinity (M.Div) in 2020 from Emmanuel Christian Seminary & a B.A. in Preaching and Youth Ministry in 2015 from Johnson University.