Ministers

The Rev. Dr. John C. Brearley - Senior Minister, jbrearley@mbfpc.com - 843.448.4496

At a Congregational meeting on Sunday, June 23, 2013, the congregation approved the Pastor Nominating Committee's recommendation that The Reverend Doctor John Cecil Brearley be called as the next Senior Minister of First Presbyterian Church. Dr. Brearley will begin serving the First Presbyterian Church of Myrtle Beach in August.

Dr. John Brearley and his family are relocating from Greenville, SC, where he has served as senior pastor at the John Knox Presbyterian Church for the last 17 years. Prior to his call to John Knox Presbyterian, John served as pastor at Elkin Presbyterian Church in Elkin, NC, from 1989-1996 and as associate pastor at Bethesda Presbyterian Church in Camden, SC, from 1985-88. John earned his undergraduate degree from Presbyterian College, his Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary, and his Doctor of Ministry from Columbia Seminary. He also participated in post graduate study in Scotland at the University of Edinburgh. For over two decades he has also participated in the Reformed Theology Group and the Preaching Seminar at Montreat. Dr. Brearley currently serves as Vice Chair of the Presbyterian Homes of South Carolina. He was moderator of the Foothills Presbytery in 2010-2011 and currently serves on its Committee on Ministry.

To know John and Tammy Brearley is to love them. The couple grew up in the same church and schools in Columbia, SC. They began dating in high school and married while John was in seminary. Tammy taught third grade at Christ Church Episcopal School in Greenville for the last eleven years. The Brearleys have four outstanding children. Their daughter Meg has just completed her first year as a history teacher at Lexington (SC) High School. She and her husband, Paul Greathouse, were married in the summer of 2012. The Brearleys’ daughter Lauren is a practicing attorney in Columbia, SC. Their son Michael and wife Erin live in Nashville where Michael attends the Vanderbilt Law School and Erin teaches music. Following in the footsteps of her siblings John and Tammy’s youngest child, Caroline attends Furman University.

John comes from a long and distinguished line of Presbyterian ministers. His grandfather, Dr. Cecil Brearley, organized the founding of our church, The First Presbyterian Church of Myrtle Beach, in 1928 while serving as pastor of Kingston Presbyterian Church in Conway. Tammy also has deep family ties to the Myrtle Beach area. Her father, Gene Lewis, grew up in Conway. Her mother, Peggy Nigh Lewis, lived in Myrtle Beach and attended First Presbyterian Church of Myrtle Beach.

The Rev. Cameron (Cam) Thomas - Associate Pastor, cthomas@mbfpc.com - 843.448.4496

Hailing from the small rural community of Barbeque, North Carolina, Cam Thomas considers himself one of the foremost unofficial barbeque ambassadors on the Eastern Seaboard. After earning a BA in History from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, Cam spent four years as a high school teacher and football coach at Western Harnett High School in Lillington, North Carolina. It was there that he became reacquainted with Mary Melissa Goodnight whom he had first met and fallen in love with while in the third grade.

As coach of the school tennis team, Mary needed a driver to transport her players to matches, and Cam just happened to have his bus license. While spending hours together at tennis courts all over eastern North Carolina, Cam and Mary became good friends, and over time they fell in love. Following a beach proposal at Bald Head Island, the couple was married on August 7, 2010.

Cam and wife Mary moved to Richmond, Virginia, where Cam entered Union Seminary. In 2014, The Pastor Nominating Committee at First Presbyterian Church contacted Cam Thomas and then invited him and Mary to visit FPC. It was very clear that Cam Thomas was a perfect fit for the First Presbyterian Church of Myrtle Beach. At a congregation meeting on Sunday, April 27, the PNC recommended Cameron W. Thomas and nominated him as Associate Pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Myrtle Beach, SC. The congregation voted to accept the nomination.

On May 31, 2014, Cam earned his Master of Divinity degree. He and Mary packed their belonging and moved to Myrtle Beach. Cam was ordained on Sunday, August 3 at his home church, in Barbeque, NC.

Cam also has certification and experience in patient counseling through Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond.

Ever the adventurers, Cam and Mary have explored many areas of the country, including the Grand Canyon and Sedona in Arizona and more recently, a frozen-over Lake Erie. Their sidekick on many of these adventures is Zeb, an affectionate and mischievous Walker Treeing Coonhound whose talents include hunting down the warmest spot on the couch. Zeb, Cam, and Mary enjoy spending time together and with friends and family, sharing meals, jokes and stories. On sunny days you can find them on local jogging trails, bike paths, or the beach.

On Sunday, September 21, The Reverend Cameron Thomas was installed as Associate Pastor, Youth & Missions, at First Presbyterian Church, Myrtle Beach, SC during the 11:00 AM worship service.

The Rev. Christa Brewer - Associate Pastor, cbrewer@mbfpc.com - 843.448.4496

Born and raised in Carmichael, California, a suburb of Sacramento, Christa’s father, David, worked for the California Transportation Commission and her mother, Phyllis, was a Kindergarten teacher (both now happily retired). She is the younger of two daughters. Older sister, Karen, lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan with husband, Mike, and two children, son, Steven, and daughter, Megan. Christa currently lives with her sweet leopard gecko, Lily.

 

After graduating from high school with an International Baccalaureate diploma, Christa attended Stanford University and earned a BA in Classics and Economics in 2001. With plans to go into Egyptology and the study of classical economies, God called Christa to instead explore vocational ministry. She served as college ministry intern at First Presbyterian Church, Winston-Salem, North Carolina from 2001-2002. During that time, Christa sensed a call to pursue vocational ministry. As the time had passed to apply for seminary that year, Christa worked as an administrator of a financial services company before enrolling at Princeton Theological Seminary in 2003.

 

While at Princeton, Christa agreed to take a year-long internship as assistant minister at Groomsport Presbyterian Church in Northern Ireland and added an M.A. in Christian Education to her studies. She served as a chaplain to Stanford Hospital and Lucille Packard Children’s Hospital for her Clinical Pastoral Education, served a pastoral intern to three churches in Charleston, West Virginia, and served as a summer assistant minister to two small rural churches in Mountmellick and Tullamore in the Republic of Ireland. Additionally, Christa served for three years as the editorial assistant for Theology Today, the internationally acclaimed theological journal produced at Princeton seminary. In 2008, Christa graduated from Princeton Theological Seminary with a M.Div. and a M.A. in Christian Education.

 

After graduation, Christa served as volunteer intern at Mercer County, New Jersey chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness. In November 2008, she was called as Associate Pastor at The Woodlands Community Presbyterian Church, The Woodlands, Texas, a suburb of Houston. There she concentrated on adult education and discipleship, mission, pastoral care, and worship. From 2010-2012, Christa studied at San Francisco Theological Seminary, earning her Diploma in the Art of Spiritual Direction, thus certifying her as a spiritual director.

 

In 2014, Christa accepted a call as Associate Pastor to First Presbyterian Church of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. She was introduced to the congregation on November 1, 2014 and installed during the 11:00 AM worship on Sunday, February 15, 2015.

 

Christa has served on a New Church Development Committee; Committee on Preparation for Ministry, led retreats, and most important to her, the colleague group of young pastors that she and a friend started in 2010 which continues to meet monthly. She plays the flute, enjoys world travel, Irish dancing, counted cross-stitch, reading, hiking, and exploring her surrounding community.

The Rev. Dr. Howard Hansen - Parish Associate, hhansen@mbfpc.com - 843.448.4496

Reared in China by missionary parents, Howard earned his Associate, Bachelors, Masters, and Doctorates' from Princeton University, University Of Pittsburgh, Nyack College, and Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. He served several churches in Pennsylvania (Pittsburgh area) and New Jersey. Dr. Hansen and his wife, Alice Marie, have three children, L. SuZann, Kevin, and Evan. He now serves as part-time Parish Associate Minister at First Presbyterian.

The Rev. Judith (Judy) Cettei - Parish Associate, jcettei@mbfpc.com - 843.448.4496

Rev. Judith (Judy) Cettei joined the pastoral staff in January, 2014 as a part-time Parish Associate. Judy graduated from Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania with a B.A. degree in German/Russian. After teaching for a few years, she joined her husband as owner and operator of McDonald’s restaurants. In 2002 Judy finally answered God’s call to a life of pastoral ministry and graduated from Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond, VA. After seminary she was the solo pastor of the Lake City Presbyterian Church and McDowell Presbyterian prior to Lake City. She retired from serving the Lake City Presbyterian Church in 2012 and continued her work for New Harmony Presbytery. Judy served on Dr. John Brearley’s Installation Committee in the fall of 2013 and offered to help with pastoral care and worship leadership. Judy and her husband, Mike, live in Georgetown and are the proud parents of Lara (Miles) Adler, Pawleys Island, SC and Matthew (Kim) Cettei, San Jose, CA. They have five wonderful grandchildren, ages 1-12. Judy and Mike feel like they’ve “come home,” as they were members of FPC in 1983-86, when they first moved to South Carolina from Pennsylvania.