Ambassador Presbyterian Church was started in 1997, when Rev. Warren Harvey moved to Apex, NC with his wife Cathy and their three (now four) sons, having been called by our denomination, the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church, to plant a congregation in the Triangle area. After meeting a few people in this growing community, they started a bible study in their home which ultimately grew into a core group of people who began worshipping together at Olive Chapel Elementary School in August of 1998. Those early years were marked by God’s amazing grace in bringing new families, deepening relationships, and providing for the needs of his new church as we sought to be ambassadors for Christ in this community.
As the church continued to grow, Ambassador moved from being a church plant to an organized ARP church in 2003, ordaining our first elders (Jim Compton, Don Knox and Gary Shearin) and installing Pastor Harvey as the first called minister. Emphasis continued to be placed on living out the gospel in our relationships through worship, small group ministry, discipleship and outreach, particularly to young families and through ministry to children as they seemed to outnumber the adults at this point.
In 2004, we saw God’s amazing provision of both the opportunity and the means for us to purchase almost six acres of property in the heart of downtown Apex. Two years later we organized a building committee, started a capital campaign, and began to pray for God’s provision of a place where we could have a more permanent presence in the community. Meanwhile, lives were being impacted by the gospel and our church family continued to grow. We continued to proclaim the gospel, grow in grace together, serve and reach out in our community, and expand our leadership and ministries.
In 2008, God moved us to a new location at Penny Road Elementary where we met until our new building was completed in March of 2010. Moving into our own building was a challenging transition, but one which ultimately resulted in renewed vision and expanded opportunities for ministry. Over the next decade, we added to our ministry staff, hiring our first Associate Pastor Dan Layman who served for eight years before taking a pastorate in Ohio. We also hired our first Director of Children’s Ministry Rachel Kennedy, who now serves both our children and youth ministries. We also have continued to expand our support for ministries and missionaries, both local and international, seeking to partner with others to see the gospel go forth.
Coming off the challenges and changes brought by the pandemic, as well as a sabbatical for Pastor Harvey in 2022, the Session and staff began a process to review and refresh our vision and structure our ministries to better enable us to reach our growing community. That vision has renewed and sharpened our focus to be Christ’s ambassadors who are living for our King, loving like our King, and leading to our King, and it is guiding the structuring of our staff and ministries to enable us to do that for the glory of God and the growth of his kingdom. It is also being accompanied by an updating of our facilities and campus as a house of worship for God’s people and a welcoming “embassy” of His kingdom to the community.
By God’s grace, after 25 years of ministry, with many of the original members still here and many new faces being added along the way, Ambassador continues to be a community of believers committed to loving God, one another and our neighbors through the grace and truth of Jesus Christ. We have seen God work in amazing ways, and we have continued to witness first hand Jesus’ promise to “build his church.” As we look to the future, we’re excited about what God has in store for his family at Ambassador. We invite you to come join us in the journey.
To God be the glory!