Reverend Dave Edmunds began to lead the Elmwood congregation in January 2017. He also presides over the Belle Valley Congregation.
Below is an article written by Rev. Dave:
I grew up in Pittsburgh, PA, in a suburb called Penn Hills, in the warm shadow of 2 older sisters (Karen & Beth) and 1 older brother (Tom), whom I idolized. I was a pretty normal kid growing up–mischievous sometimes, rebellious other times, and downright cute most of the time (a little too thick? ok, I’ll try to be careful in the future!).
I attended Indiana University of Pennsylvania and began as a business major. God had a different plan for me though as I quickly discovered. Through an amazing set of circumstances, and the feedback of some adult mentors in my life, I was convinced that God was challenging me to enter ministry. I graduated in 1981, and promptly married my high school sweetheart, Marcy. I volunteered with Young Life High School Outreach Ministries for 2 years while working in the graphics business. Marcy and I then moved to the Boston area while I attended Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary to get a Masters of Divinity degree (which only proves that seminaries give even troublemakers like me a chance!).
I then accepted a call to my first pastorate at St. Paul’s United Church of Christ in downtown Erie, where I served a wonderful congregation for 12 years–in many ways it was like an on-the-job training program–and their patience was forever forgiving my occasional ineptitude! Along the way my wife and I had 3 amazing children: Rachel, almost 30, Rebecca, now 26, and Tim, almost 24.
I then took an interim associate pastoral position at 1st Presbyterian Church of the Covenant. What a gift from God this was to serve with such a visionary, faith-driven, and warm congregation and staff. It was during this time that I went through the process of asking God’s direction and then discerning a call into the PC(USA).
This was the wild and wacky journey that brought me to Belle Valley Presbyterian Church almost 14 years ago…a congregation of such talented, warm, faithful and passionate disciples of Jesus Christ! I believe God is doing some wondrous things in us, among us, and through us as we move out of our comfort zones into the darkness, the woundedness, and the brokenness of hurting people all around us–not because we have all the answers, or “have it all together,” but because we are also a broken, wounded people who’ve found healing love in a dynamically forgiving and transforming Rescuer…Jesus Christ! In my “spare time” (what’s that?) I love music, playing guitar, performing in community theatre, watching the Steelers, Pirates, and Penguins with my family and friends, reading, video gaming, and becoming a Seinfeld-a-phobe! God has developed a renewed zeal for mission in my heart through the PC(USA)–particularly in Ghana, as I’ve had the privilege of helping to form our Presbytery’s mission partnership with the Upper Northern Presbytery of the Evangelical Presbyterian Church of Ghana. God is great and gracious, and what a privilege I’ve had to be in His service (with all my warts and failings) for 29 years.
And yet I feel like I’ve only just started! As we enter a new era of ministry together with the wonderful servants of Elmwood Presbyterian Church, together we will serve and reach our respective neighborhoods with the Gospel of Jesus Christ as we use our creativity, imagination, energy, and hearts to step outside of our comfort zones to take risks loving the broken and lost. I look forward to all that God has awaiting us, as we surrender to His agenda for us!