- Tara ThompsonSenior Pastor
Born in Pennsylvania, Tara moved to the sunshine state as an eighth grader. A faithful Pittsburgh sports fan, Tara hoped to return to PA for college. Instead, God led her to Jacksonville, FL and the University of North Florida where she earned a degree in Psychology. Upon college graduation, Tara worked at Publix as a department manager for several years before attending Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Massachusetts and earning her Master’s of Divinity degree. She served two churches in Florida and one in Pittsburgh, PA before Jesus led her to Beaumont to serve as St. Andrew’s pastor.
Tara is a teacher at heart and loves helping others discover how Jesus has gifted them for service in building His Church. She describes her ministry style as relational, which involves experiencing life together, bearing witness to Christ's activity, and encouraging one another on the journey of faith.
Tara's hobbies include sports, reading, art, and traveling. She has visited six of the seven continents and has nurtured ministry partnerships in ten countries. She loves meeting new people and is excited to do life and ministry with us in southeast Texas.
- Melissa HoytOffice Administrator
Melissa brings experience in business as an assistant office manager, previously a small business owner for five years, which she built up and subsequently sold, and as a volunteer in church record keeping. She has worked as a substitute teacher in public schools and as a preschool teacher at a church in Baytown.
She attended Chenier Business School, Lamar University in Beaumont, and Lee College in Baytown where she earned her Associate’s Degree in Education. She has also taken accounting, computer, and business courses.
She grew up in Winnie and has family in this area. She is married with two sons. One is finding his way and residing in Dallas and the other is in the seventh grade and loves robotics, camping and tubing.
She and her family enjoys movies, board games, camping, anything with the water (fishing, swimming, etc.) and just hanging out at their home.
- Katina AucoinOffice Assistant
While working a previous job, Katina traveled to several different states where she met the love of her life, Chad. They have two beautiful, loving girls of 10 and 7. She had been a stay at home mom for over nine years and now is ready to get out and start working again.
Katina has a passion for praying and she’s known for being a prayer warrior. She loves the Lord and loves talking about Him. She serves at her church as part of the prayer team. She’s definitely a woman of God and doesn’t know what she would do without Him in every moment of her life. She knows that God has led her to this church for a reason and she’s excited to see what all He brings to her new adventure.
- Deanna WeitzelDay School Director
Deanna has been Director of our Day School since 2008, but she first began working there in 1989 as a Teacher Assistant. She uses creativity and continuing education for the teachers to make our Day School the best it can be.
Deanna and her husband Teddy have 2 children and 2 precious grandchildren! She is our Wonder Woman here at St. Andrew's Day School and we are so lucky to have her as our Director!
- Levi DuncanDirector of Music Ministry.
A 2014 Lamar graduate, Levi has served as Associate Director of Music. In 2015 he founded the Southeast Texas Vocal Artists, a group of about 35 exceptionally talented volunteers who gather weekly. STVA has been invited to perform at the Texas Choral Directors state convention and also at St. Anthony Basilica.
St. Andrew’s will now serve as the home base for this exceptional choir to rehearse.
In addition to his musical accomplishments, Mr. Duncan is an exceptionally pleasant young man. His enthusiasm, sense of purpose, and his expressions of faith in God are infectious. They serve as evidence to why so many people are eager to sing under his direction.
- Thomas FurlowOrganist
Thomas came to St. Andrew's with a variety of musical experiences. From childhood, he has played piano and sang in church. He has served as assistant director and head music director leading worship in church since 2011. He has studied under many great professors of piano, organ, and voice. Thomas is always practicing or studying music to continue his growth as a musician and to continue honoring God with the talents he was blessed with. Thomas's love for music and worship is evident every Sunday. His leadership from the piano and organ will encourage you to worship God through songs of praise.
|Class of 2019||Class of 2020||Class of 2021|
Board of Deacons
|Class of 2021|
|Class of 2021|
Mary Ann Roe
Foundation Board of Directors
|Class of 2019||Class of 2020||Class of 2021|
|Administration:||Steve Richardson and Don Shaver|
|Fellowship:||Bruce Burnside and Linda Sparkman|
|Christian Education:||Karen Spivey|
|Mission:||Luke Nichols and Dave Darchuk|
|Worship:||Bruce Partain and Paige Neyland|
What is a Deacon?
The word deacon is derived from the Greek diakonos which means “servant.” The diaconate is the Board of Deacons. The office of Deacon, as set forth in Scripture, is one of SYMPATHY, WITNESS and SERVICE, after the example of Jesus Christ. Acts 6:1-7; Phil. 1:1; I Tim. 3:8-15
The mission of the Board of Deacons at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church is to provide leadership in ministries of personal care-giving (Book of Order, G-2.02). It is the duty of Deacons, first of all, to minister to those who are in need, to the sick, to the friendless and to any who may be in distress.
The current Deacon Officers are:
Moderator: Charlotte Schwarzlose
Staff liaison: Julie Odle (Pastoral Care Coordinator)
Diaconate Ministry Teams
The diaconate is composed of various ministry teams and each ministry team is described as follows, with its chair and membership noted.
A team of volunteers devoted to caring for those in a current life “crisis” who meet every week to pray for and to call and/or visit at least 1/4 of those on their list.
This team assigns worship teams of two to bring Communion to the home-bound on the Sunday that Communion is offered in the church service. However, at this time, due to COVID, Home Communion is temporarily suspended until further notice.
This ministry provides refreshments during the visitation part of a funeral service. It also provides for greeters if the funeral service is on a different day. Pat Buehrle coordinates the reception in the parlor and finds the greeters.
One on One Grief Support
This team works with the Pastoral Care Team to match those who have lost a loved one with volunteers who will support the bereaved with cards, phone calls and visits for up to a year.
This ministry offers a worship service with communion to the residents on the first Sunday of the month. Barbara Abel leads this ministry every first Sunday of the month, along with the help of faithful volunteers.
Drivers on Demand
This service provides transportation for those who do not drive. Calls are made from a list of volunteers who will run errands or take folks shopping or to appointments.
This team and the Pastoral Care Team identify shut-ins who would like to receive carolers at Christmas time. Deacons and choir members lead groups of volunteers to sing to them.