In September 2022, Jim Musgrave officially became the new Commissioned Pastor to Gilbert and Logan First Presbyterian Churches. Jim is not, however, new to the Presbytery or those churches. Those of us who have been in this presbytery for awhile have been privileged to see his warmly smiling face for many years. Jim has been active on the Committee on Ministry, Nominating, Vocations, and, most recently, Relations committees.

Jim grew up in the First Presbyterian Church of Huntington. As a teenager, people in the church often said that Jim would be a pastor someday. It turns out they were right, but it took a little longer for Jim to get there.

After college, Jim went to work for the Appalachian Power Company and worked for them for 40 years. As he was approaching retirement, the Presbytery had its first Authorized Lay Preacher/Commissioned Lay Pastor class. Jim told himself that he needed to take the class, but he did what many folks do – he delayed and missed the deadline. By the time the next class was offered, Jim was ready. He enrolled in the program and finished in 2006.

Part of what promoted Jim to want to become a pastor was his experience with the small church that his wife, Connie, was raised in – Liberty Presbyterian Church in Pocahontas County. Seeing the struggle of that small church to find pastoral leadership, Jim felt called to be able to fill that need.

Jim was first commissioned to pastor the Oak Hill/Summerlee Parish. But his very next call was to serve his wife’s old church in the Upper Pocahontas Parish – Liberty, Baxter, and Alexander Memorial Presbyterian Churches. Since then, Jim has served Kuhn Memorial Presbyterian Church in Barboursville, the First Presbyterian Church of Logan for a couple years as interim, Gilbert Presbyterian Church as Moderator of Session, and then Rock Lake Presbyterian Church.

Jim has served as pulpit supply in a number of churches, but his real passion is for pastoring. He is looking forward to his new ministry with the Gilbert and Logan First Presbyterian Churches.

When asked what he liked about the churches, Jim has been impressed with the ability of the Gilbert church to try new things. They readily adapted to streaming their service during the pandemic. They are in a beautiful location in western Mingo County. And they truly love one another. They have so much to share!

The Logan church, he said, has a great facility. It has one of the newer church buildings in the presbytery, and they have kept it in great shape. Logan has a solid core of committed and hardworking members who love each other and the Lord. They also have so much to share!

Jim and his wife, Connie, live in Barboursville and are members of Highlawn Presbyterian Church in Huntington. They have four children, seven grandchildren, four great grandchildren, and one more great on the way!

When asked about his dreams for ministry with the Gilbert and Logan churches, Jim says that he dreams of helping them find ways to use technology to expand their footprint and visibility. The potential congregation for these churches is much greater than just the people physically around them.

May God continue to bless the ministry Jim Musgrave and the Gilbert and Logan First Presbyterian Churches!