Boyden High graduate Emmette Thompson to speak Sunday at St. John’s Lutheran Church

Published 12:05 am Thursday, October 20, 2022

By Susan Shinn Turner
For the Salisbury Post

SALISBURY — Emmette Thompson, member of the Boyden High School Class of 1972, will share the sermon this Sunday at 11 a.m. at St. John’s Lutheran Church.

St. John’s is Thompson’s home congregation, and he delivered his first sermon there for Youth Sunday some 50 years ago.

After a weekend of activities, his class is invited to worship at St. John’s on Sunday morning.

“What better way for classmates to fellowship than in church?” Thompson says.

St. John’s was an important part of Thompson’s life growing up, especially after he lost his mother at a young age.

His father, Emmette Thompson Jr., had 70 years perfect attendance in Sunday school.

“My father taught me to be a helper by volunteering at St. John’s,” Thompson notes.

Thompson went on to graduate from Western Carolina University, and married his wife, Valarie, on July 27, 1985 — his birthday. The couple have an adult son and daughter and three grandchildren.

Since 1999, Thompson has been executive director of Mission of Hope, a non-profit organization that assists the poorest families of Appalachia in counties in Tennessee and Kentucky.

He plans to retire from that organization at the end of the year, and will be honored Nov. 6 for his 23 years of service.

“I’m privileged to do what I do,” Thompson says.

“We’re excited to welcome Emmette to St. John’s,” says Interim Senior Pastor Greg Williams, “not only to celebrate his 50th class reunion, but also to participate in St. John’s celebration of 275 years.

“I’m also excited to hear about how St. John’s has shared God’s compassion and care through Emmette and his ministry.

“Please come and be a part of the 11 a.m. worship service this Sunday, Oct. 23, to hear his inspiring story.”

Susan Shinn Turner is staff writer for St. John’s Lutheran Church.

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