Luke Edwards, King Street Church [Boone, NC]
Western North Carolina Conference Clergy Award Recipient.
“Luke is meeting people where they are, really listening to them, helping meet the physical needs of food, shelter and warmth as well as answering the “Why Jesus” question and leading them to“How do I invite Jesus into my life’.”
Rev. Luke Edwards began his work at Boone First United Methodist Church in Boone, North Carolina as Director of Missions, starting a community garden, a firewood ministry, and supporting several mission programs and services. When the church fully recognized the need to have a presence on King Street, the local main street of Boone, Luke was tapped to be the pastor of that street church, beginning with an evening worship service in the home of Luke and his wife, Ginna.
When it became more than their home could accommodate another site was found. Now people meet in Boone Saloon, study the Bible, discuss the tough questions, drink a beer, and have church. Several street people have found Jesus, as well as a church family and Luke has been a stable, steady person to help shepherd them along the way. People who simply don’t relate to a traditional church structure now study and worship through King Street Church. Hear more about his ministry from Luke.
The person who nominated Luke Edwards for this award actually knew Harry Denman as a frequent guest in their home when she was growing up. She remembers him always saying you needed to meet people where they are, and she saw him being genuine, a person without polish or worldly power, yet who exemplified Christ in her life in a profound way. She says, “Luke has that same gift. He is real. He is genuine. He is quick to hit the homeless shelter. Yet, he also takes time to hang out with people like me who are old enough to be his mom. He connects with me personally. That’s the Christ connection. That’s what Harry Denman was all about.”
She continues, “Luke Edwards meets people where they are in all respects, and has consistently strived to meet their needs in sustainable ways that respect the individual and equip that person to provide for him or herself. Whether it’s breaking bread with the homeless, the Bible Study at the shelter or the local jail, Luke is connecting people with Christ and the Word of God in Christian community.”