Weaverville – After 28 years of serving at the First Baptist Church of Weaverville, administrative assistant Joy Sprinkle has retired from her position at the church.
Sprinkle, a Weaverville resident, said she heard about the job through a friend and submitted her resume. “I guess it really did shock me when they called and said they wanted me to be their next administrative assistant… I have always been so blessed just to work there.”
While Sprinkle has been on staff at the church for 28 years, she’s not a member. Her husband, Danny, is a pastor in Black Mountain. She said the church wanted to keep her job and worship separate, but she said that didn’t stop the church from treating her like she was one of their own, saying she was blessed to have two church families. “That church is just number one. I can’t brag on the people there enough.”
Asked what the highlight of working at the church was, Sprinkle did not hesitate with her reply, “The highlight would be the people, their love for God, their love for each other, and the love and compassion they have shown to me and my family. Just to go in every day and have people smiling and talking to you. You know we’ve laughed and talked and cried together and prayed together. They just always included me on their joys and celebrations and also in their sad times and their loss. That church is just a huge loving family. They reach out to people more than any other church I’ve seen.”
During her 28 years, Sprinkle has served with three different senior pastors, two interim pastors, and numerous youth pastors. She said, undoubtedly, the most challenging time was during the pandemic. “On pastors especially, but we all got through it.”
Asked if she would be coming to the church’s 100th celebration in July, she said, “Yes, I had wanted to stay through the celebration, but my daughter changed things because she had a baby and she has to go back to work. Joy also said she has a daughter down in the eastern part of the state that is about to have her second child, so there will be lots of grandchildren to attend to in retirement.
Taking care of grandchildren after leaving work is not the only thing Joy plans on doing in retirement. She hopes to be more active in helping her husband do ministry work. “We hope to do more ministry together and to play with our grandchildren.”
Joy was our longest serving staff member,” said Rev. Stuart Lamkin, pastor of the church. “We will miss her very much because she is a dear person who loves everyone and our church has been overwhelmingly blessed to have her serve and love our congregation.” He went on to say, “Anyone who’s ever spoken with Joy Sprinkle will soon realize she is the nicest, kindest person they’ve ever encountered.”
The church will not be without a Sprinkle in the administrative assistant position as the new administrative assistant’s last name is the same as Joy’s. Debbie Sprinkle has joined the church to take over for Joy. It turns out that Joy’s and Debbie’s husbands are distant relations. “We’re very glad to have her (Debbie) and we welcome how she can bless and serve our church as well,” commented Rev. Lampkin.