In the early 1990’s many Christians in the fast-growing southeast section of Gastonia, North Carolina felt the need for a new church in the area. With the encouragement and support of the Presbytery of Western North Carolina, a new church development began and a pastor for the developing church was called to coordinate the effort.
Pastor Jerry Bron moved to Gastonia in October 1993 and a task force of volunteers called 8,000 South Gastonia residents, inviting them to consider the new church. On January 9, 1994, Southminster held its first worship service at the Orthopedic Hospital Auditorium in Gastonia. Two hundred twenty-two individuals attended as Southminster celebrated its official launch.
On Chartering Sunday, October 2, 1994, one hundred fifty-five people stood to pledge their commitment to the new church development. These individuals became the charter members of Southminster Presbyterian Church.
Later that year, sixteen acres of land was purchased at 1401 Hoffman Road by the Presbyterian of Western North Carolina to build the campus for the new church. On March 24, 1996 ground was broken for the construction of the new facility. Phase one of the building was completed and the first worship service at the Hoffman Road campus was held on Easter Sunday in 1997.
In 2003 the church expanded and added additional classroom and ministry space, as well as a gymnasium and athletic fields. Pastor Jerry Bron served Southminster for seventeen years, as the founding pastor and church planter, before his retirement in 2010.
In 2005 Southminster merged with Armstrong Presbyterian Church of Gastonia and the two congregations became one. The Armstrong Campus is now the Gaston School of the Arts on Union Road in Gastonia.
In the summer of 2013, Southminster called its second pastor, Reverend Dan Oedy. Pastor Dan began his ministry at Southminster in the fall of 2013 and was installed in January of 2014. In October of that year Southminster celebrated its 20th Anniversary and recognized Dr. Jerry Bron as Pastor Emeritus for his leadership.
In 2015 Southminster completed an exciting Mission and Vision process which guides the church into a promising and healthy future. This process resulted in our third major expansion program, building a new Atrium and entry into the facility and worship space, enhancing the Family Ministry Center, expanding the youth ministry space and renovating the recreation ministry areas.
Subsequent phases will include a new “Refuge” Youth Ministry Center, improvements to the Gymnasium, expanding our worship space and adding additional classrooms, offices and ministry areas.
Southminster continues to be a growing, warm and welcoming church, committed to a vibrant and uplifting worship experience, rooted in the wisdom and guidance of God’s word.