One thing I have learned is that good friends have other good friends. This is a series of stories about “friends of my friends”. The post below is the story for May 25, 2015.
My goal in 2015 is to learn or get re-acquainted with 365 people and doing a daily post on “the friend of a friend” is helping me get closer to my goal.
Church is a holy place filled with rituals, scripture, and sacred reverence. I have never been associated with any other kind of church service except formal and ritualistic until I met my new friend David Ruth. He has exposed me to the concept that a church doesn’t have to be uptight to be all right.
David Ruth has a great life story. He was born in Lumberton, NC and went off to college at UNC Wilmington. He grew up in the church he now leads today. How he got to be a reverend was not a straight line. There are more twist and turns on his path to becoming a minister than you will find on a Himalayan goat path.
David had two summer jobs that would alter his life.
In high school he worked at a Presbyterian summer camp called Camp Monroe. At that camp he worked alongside a counselor named Eva Monroe who eventually become his wife and best friend. It was not “love at first sight”. In fact in might be best described as “spite at first sight”. David’s immature prankish behavior did not go over well with Eva Monroe.
As a nineteen-year-old entrepreneur selling books door to door in Indiana, he was in an automobile accident and his chance of surviving were not good. That experience taught Davd what church and the Christian community is all about. First Presbyterian Church in Lumberton loved him and his family beyond description.
After a lot of trials and tribulations David graduated from UNC-Wilmington and got married to that “spite at first sight” counselor Eva Monroe, that happened in 1981. He began his career as a businessman, eventually becoming an automobile dealer and operated a Hyundai and Nissan dealership with a partner.
While he was in Fayetteville, NC a church in the area needed a preacher one Sunday. Thus began his love of preaching. he became a commissioned lay pastor and stood in forty plus pulpits before becoming a supply pastor serving St. Pauls Presbyterian Church. During that year-long ministry he felt a nudge to begin the process of becoming an ordained pastor. After much prayer, with his family and friends, he enrolled at Duke Divinity School in 2000. After graduating in 2003, he was named as the pastor of Williamsburg Presbyterian Church in South Carolina in 2005. There he honed his pastoral talents until he arrived in Lumberton this past fall.
I look forward to hearing his irreverent banter each Sunday with his assistant pastor, wife, and best friend Eva Monroe Ruth.
The Friend-DAVID RUTH-depicted with his entire family
The Friend of the Friend – EVA RUTH -shown on far right-David far left
The Pastor’s wife
Eva Monroe Ruth is an amazing women. She is a wife, she is a mom, she is a grandmother, she is an ordained minister, and she is the pastoral side kick to David Ruth. Some Sunday mornings I cannot believe the comments that are exchanged between the two of them at church.
The self deprecating humor makes me laugh every Sunday. Each is also very capable of zinging the other which never lets it get too one-sided.
Eva is also a leader that truly believe in serving others. She has served the Felecian Center in South Carolina by telling Bible stories, sometimes teaching music and handbells, serving less fortunate a Blessed Angela Meal and more.
Eva was ordained as minister of the word and sacrament in the Presbyterian Church (USA) on Sunday, August 11, 2013. David and Eva make a great team because they both are leaders who want to serve.
Eva is the mother to three very talented children Andrew is a PC(USA) Pastor in Clayton, NC. He and his wife, Claire, have a newborn son, Jack. Mary Kate lives in Raleigh with her husband Jayson and their two sons, JD and Jennings. Maggie, her youngest, is a third year medical school student doing her rotations in Orangeburg, SC.
Glad my Sundays have a little irreverence from the reverend Ruth(s)