Carter and Tamara are native Roanokers. They both graduated from college in 2009, Tamara from Roanoke College in Salem, Virginia, and Carter from Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia. They got married and took a hard right turn to go to Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina.
In the back of their minds, they thought they may return to Roanoke one day to plant a church, but God wanted to develop them over time first. They moved for seminary the week after their honeymoon where, for the next three years, Carter earned a master’s degree in Christian ethics. Meanwhile, they plugged into The Summit Church in Raleigh-Durham and quickly became passionate about The Summit’s vision for reaching the world through church planting.
So in 2012, Carter and Tamara were sent out of The Summit as members of a church planting team. With 30 other people who moved from Raleigh-Durham, they helped launch Mercy Hill Church. During the seven years since planting Mercy Hill, Carter has served the church as a community group leader, shepherding elder, and directional elder. Vocationally, he helped lead Greensboro Pregnancy Care Center for over six years, while Tamara has had the full-time job of raising their three children.
Finally, God led them back to thoughts of planting a church in Roanoke, and they just couldn’t resist his call any longer. When they thought of the more than 1000 baptisms Mercy Hill Church has seen over the last seven years, the numerous marriages brought back from the brink, the overall cultural influence the church has had in Greensboro, and more, they just knew they had been in the midst of something like a gospel-centered revival. Now they’re hungry to take that experience back to Roanoke. Carter and Tamara can’t wait to see who God will save and how he will change the culture through Redemption Church.