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Rev. Laura Byrch, Pastor

Laura began serving as pastor of Blackburn's Chapel  in July, 2020.  She was eager to come and serve with this congregation after being able to worship and preach at Blackburn's on several occasions since moving to the High Country in 2015.  She has also served on the board of Todd's Table (formerly Blackburn Community Outreach/BCO) since 2017. 


Always eager to laugh, Laura loves people and all things that foster a sense of community and making connections. She believes deeply that God has called the church to be diverse, compassionate, and just. Laura is thrilled to be part of a church that is engaged deeply in stewarding the land through having gardens and edible landscaping on our property, a prayer trail, and partnership with Todd's Table. She particularly appreciates the ways that Blackburn's Chapel lives into Jesus’ example and calling for the church to be a place of unlikely friendships created and sustained by God’s mercy.  In addition to being pastor at Blackburn's, Laura continues to serve part-time as Pastor of Community Engagement at Boone UMC.  She and her husband JB love reading, gardening, cycling, hiking, being on the water, and generally appreciating this beautiful place we get to call home. 



Peter Leslie, Worship Coordinator

Peter joined the chapel staff in December 2019 and quickly showed a willing spirit and musical gifts that have lifted worship ever since. A graduate of Wheaton College in IL, Peter has made a home in the High Country and has served small parishes in Ashe County. 

Administrative Leadership Team

Robert Scouten, Financial Treasurer and Secretary

Alison Dees, Program Rep

Jim Dees, Trustee Rep

Carroll Ann Busher, Staff Parish Relations Rep

Peter Leslie, Worship Coordinator

Caitlin Stanton-Rich and Vicki Randolph, Mission and Outreach Reps

Laura Byrch, Leadership Development & Nominations Rep