Historical Highlights <Full History pdf>
On June 7, 1957, a group of 63 residents of the Vestavia Hills area met to discuss the founding of a Presbyterian church there. The church received its charter at a special service at the Vestavia Hills Town Hall on Sunday, September 8, 1957. Ruling elders and deacons were elected. Two weeks later on September 22, they were ordained and installed.
In May 1958, Rev. William H. Kryder, of the Graham Presbyterian Church, Graham NC, accepted the call to become the first minister of Southminster Presbyterian Church. He was formally installed as minister on July 20 of that year.
On March 6, 1960, Southminster Presbyterian Church met for the first time in its first church building. Dedication services for the chapel and educational building were led by Dr. Bob S. Hodges, Jr., associate secretary of the General Council of the Presbyterian Church US.
In 1963, the congregation approved the building of a $200,000 two-story Christian Education Building to be added to the south side of the existing structure. Construction began in August, and was completed and dedicated in April 1964.
The Southminster Day School (SDS) was established in May 1967 as a service arm of our church, with Mrs. Carolyn Baumgartner as Director. The School opened its doors on September 5, 1967 with an initial enrollment of 87 students in three kindergarten classes and one first grade class. The purpose of SDS is to give the children of this community the finest preparatory background in their early formative years in a Christian atmosphere. We want our students to increase “in wisdom and stature and favor with God and man”. SDS has grown and evolved since its first days in 1967. In 2022, SDS has 200 students enrolled in grades PreK through 5th. The Director is Mrs. Jeanne Colvin.
List of Ministers
1958 to 1966 Rev. William H. Kryder
1967 to 1975 Rev. Robert L. Catlin
1976 to 1987 Rev. Richard D. Rodda
1983 to 2017 Rev. Dr. Joseph A. Slane
2017 to Present Rev. Dr. Tom Bryson
List of Associate Pastors
1971 to1974 Rev. Julia P. Simmons
1996 to 2000 Rev. Kathy Evans
2013 to 2019 Rev. Benjamin Acton
Some of Our Members Became Ordained Ministers!
K.C. Ptomey Ordained 1967
Chris Jones Ordained 1994
Frank “Chip” Blankinship Ordained 1995
Doris Chandler Ordained 1996
Rachel Winter Ordained 2000
Dan Stephens Ordained 2004
Nick Reed Ordained 2007
Will Christians Ordained 2013