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Servants of Mt. Olive

Rev. Ryan T. Ray


Pastor Ryan began serving Mt. Olive in April 2017. A NC native, Ryan has served four NC congregations in the past 18 years, 15 of those years being in the Hickory Metro area. He sensed a call to ministry while in college and has done a variety of ministry from singing bass in an a capella gospel group to leading a tour of reformation sites in Germany. Through it all, he's had a blast!
In addition to his role at Mt. Olive, he teaches a Christian Theology course at Lenoir-Rhyne University.
He is married to Kim and they enjoy working, walking, and sometimes singing together. He is the father of Liam and Nolan, ages 14 and 12. He loves good books, hot drinks, traveling, and anything that gets him outside in God's creation.


Lynne Bolick Reed, Deacon

Director of Music Ministry

Lynne grew up at Mt. Olive and is thankful for her Mt. Olive family who nurtured her growth in faith and in church music. She began playing the piano for Sunday School when she was about 11 years old and for worship at 14 years of age. Lynne earned her BA in Sacred Music & Ministry as an evening college student at Lenoir-Rhyne University in 2001; a graduate certificate in Non-Profit Management from UNC-Charlotte in 2005, and a Masters in Library & Information Studies from UNC-Greensboro in 2008. Upon retiring from a 30 year career with the public library in 2014, Lynne joined the staff of Mt. Olive as Director of Music Ministry. On March 11, 2018, Lynne was consecrated as a deacon in the ELCA and subsequently installed at Mt. Olive after being called by the church. Lynne is married to Dave and they have four adult children and seven grandchildren. She is an avid reader and loves learning new things. She thanks God every day for her husband, Dave, who is a blessing in so many ways.

Jenna Waters


Jenna is a Sacred Music student at Lenoir-Rhyne University and has served as Mt. Olive organist since May 5, 2016. When she began her work at Mt. Olive, she was only 17 years old! She had studied piano with her grandmother since she was a young child, but had only had some organ lessons on and off for about 18 months when she was hired. Her talent and passion for playing the organ is obvious to all who hear her play. She has a very promising future in sacred music and Mt. Olive is so happy to help mentor her growth. Jenna loves animals and helps her mom provide "pony parties" for children's birthdays and loves riding her own horse. She is also an advanced black belt in karate and loves her truck! Come and hear her play "her" organ each week at worship!

Karen Abernathy

Parish Administrator

Karen was born and raised in Rutherford College, NC.  She enjoyed being the youngest of three children and the only girl.  She is married to Justin Abernathy from Hildebran, NC, and they have been married for almost 18 years.  They have two girls, Ella and Jenna.  Ella is twelve and Jenna is eleven and they both will be at Heritage Middle School in the fall of 2017.  Karen’s very  passionate about basketball and coaches for the Burke Jammers Lady Basketball Club.