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Dr. Wallace C. Gaither, Jr., pastor of Lyerly Evangelical Church, was born in Rowan County, NC, and was led to Christ at an early age by his parents.  He accepted Jesus Christ as personal Savior in August, 1975, at age 11.


He had good jobs during his adult life and

also was self-employed for many years,

but he never really found a satisfying career or occupation.


The old Methodist preacher, E.M. Bounds, said, "A man ought never to go into the ministry unless he just can't stay out of it!" That was the case for Pastor Gaither. After trying many things to find purpose in life, and after going through a difficult loss in his mid-30s, the Lord finally revealed His calling.


Again in the month of August, this time in 2001, at a point when it seemed everything was working against him, Pastor Gaither cried out, "Lord, what do You want me to do with the rest of my life?"  The Lord's answer was clear: "Follow Me!"


Pastor Gaither (affectionately called "Junior" by friends) has been doing his best to follow the Lord since that day. He gave up a lucrative job, went back to school, studied for the ministry, and even went to the mission field in China. He has been pastor of Lyerly Evangelical Church since 2006.  He and Lynne Earnhardt Gaither have been married over 30 years.


Pastor Gaither earned a Doctor of Theology from Central Carolina Institute of Theology, as well as certifications in Biblical Counseling, Junior Counseling, The Synoptic Gospels, The Life of Jesus, and Lay Ministry & Leadership.

Pastor Gaither's Life Verses

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. James 1:2&3


It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man.​  ​Psalm 118:8


Associate Pastor

Darren Custer was ordained at Lyerly Church on Sept. 26, 2021, and has stepped into the role of Associate Pastor.  He has a Master's degree from Central Carolina Institute of Theology.


JULIA KOONTZ is the Secretary/Treasurer.  Her office hours are 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday.  Julia retired as Activities Director of a local assisted living center, where she had worked 18 years. She loves making crafts, working in her yard, and the beach!  Previously, Julia had worked at Food Lion in the Payroll Dept.


CAROLYN BARKER is our musician.  She is a graduate of Furman University and Gordon Conwell Seminary.  She served 25 years in several different positions at North Hills Christian School, including Head-master.  Carolyn loves "church music," and gives God the glory for her gift of music.  Currently, Carolyn serves on the Board of Directors at Rowan Helping Ministries, Capstone Recovery Center, and her community's HOA.


REV. DAVID HUTCHINS is our Music and Worship Leader.  A Rowan County native, he earned an MA degree in Sacred Music at Gardner-Webb University and a Masters in Church Music from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.  He was ordained into the ministry in 1981, and has served in music positions at churches in Granite Falls, Con-cord, Hickory, Shelby, and Salisbury.  He and Jeannie have a son, Taylor.

Deb Lash.jpg

DEBORAH LASH takes good care of our church facilities as our custodian.  She was widowed at an early age in 1980.  Deb wanted her two children to attend a Christian private school, so she started cleaning the church where the children attended school.  She's been cleaning churches, business offices and homes ever since then.  We call Deb our "trivia expert," because she knows endless trivia.

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