Fernwood Baptist Church is excited to announce that it has called The Reverend Bailey Edwards Nelson as Senior Pastor.
Rev. Nelson will begin her role as full-time Pastor on Monday, June 8th.
Please join us for her inaugural sermon on June 14th.
Reverend Bailey Edwards Nelson is passionate about helping Fernwood to continue to be a place where the people of Spartanburg can come to explore their own understanding of faith, seek spiritual maturity, celebrate human diversity & creativity, and above all, proclaim God’s unconditional love.
Rev. Nelson was born and raised in Spartanburg and is a graduate of Dorman High School. She is a classically trained violinist and vocalist who also explores the visual arts through painting. Rev. Bailey Nelson is married to Rev. Justin Nelson, who serves as a hospice chaplain. They have one son, Aidan (5 years old).
Rev. Nelson brings her experience of serving as a Minister with Children and Families in Athens, GA and her work as Associate Pastor/Pastor in Residence at Hendricks Avenue Baptist Church in Jacksonville, FL, where she was ordained to Christian ministry. In addition, Rev. Nelson had the privilege of serving alongside President Jimmy Carter on the staff of The New Baptist Covenant, a national movement to bring Baptist communities from across North America together for shared worship, education, and ministry. She was a stateside liaison for the Asia Baptist Graduate Theological Seminary, a consortium of theological institutions across Southeast Asia.
Rev. Nelson attended Furman University and received her B.A. in Religion and Music in 2005. She earned her Masters of Divinity from McAfee School of Theology of Mercer University. While in Jacksonville, Rev. Nelson completed her Clinical Pastoral Education residency at Baptist Medical Center. Most recently, Rev. Nelson served as the Director of Communications for The Spartanburg County Foundation. Prior to returning to Spartanburg, she was the Senior Pastor of Flat Rock Baptist Church in Mount Airy, NC.
A passionate preacher and author, Rev. Nelson’s sermon series and blogs have been published extensively. She is a featured author in the book, The World Is Waiting For You, a collection of sermons published by Smyth & Helwys Publishing. She is a recipient of the James T. McAfee, Jr. Endowed Vision and Leadership Award; the James Claypool Excellence in Preaching Award; the Addie Davis Award for Excellence in Preaching; and the Furman University’s Religion Department Excellence in Preaching Award. Rev. Nelson was recently chosen to participate in the Millennial Leaders Project at Union Theological Seminary in NYC. A group of 30 millennials will spend a week at the seminary examining the intersection of spirituality and social justice in their lives and work.
Stuart Jones grew up in Carlisle, South Carolina and attended Union High School. After graduation in 1980, Stuart attended Mars Hill College, where he received his undergraduate degree in religion. In 1985, he enrolled at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary where he received his Master in Divinity Degree. During his time at Southeastern, Stuart served as a Youth intern in Manassas, VA and as a technician at Dorothea Dix Hospital in Raleigh, NC.
Stuart began his ministry in the local church in 1990 when he was called to serve as Minister to Youth and Families at Oakland Baptist Church in Lexington, SC. Since then he has served churches in Greenville, NC, Oakridge, TN, and Sanford, NC. Stuart and his wife, Laura, have three sons: Nathan, Aaron, and Thaddeus . Stuart enjoys North Carolina basketball, Gamecockfootball, softball, snow skiing, weight lifting, hiking, reading, gardening, and reptiles.