The Reverend Terry Burns, who had served the Trinity Presbyterian Church in Charlottesville, Virginia for nearly 5 years as an assistant pastor, has accepted a call to serve as the pastor of the NicosiaCommunityChurch on the Mediterranean island nation of Cyprus.
Terry will replace a Church of Scotland minister who had served this English speaking congregation made up primarily of British and American citizens living and working in Cyprus, as well as a number of local members.
Burns and his wife, Cindy, had been considering a call to serve in Ireland when Cindy’s health issues caused them to cancel those plans. As her health was improving, news of the vacancy came to them through a classified ad in Christianity Today magazine. Encouraged by his good friend, Don Clements, who served as the initial Stated Clerk of Blue Ridge Presbytery while Terry was the Recording Clerk, had lived in Cyprus for a tour of duty while in the Navy and who suggested it would be a great place to live and work, Terry applied and about 4 months later, traveled to Cyprus to candidate.
As they stepped off the airplane upon arrival in June and were greeted by the dry heat that is unique to the Greek islands, Cindy immediately said (give me the real words) “This weather is perfect!” After several days visiting with the people and in the town, and preaching for on Sunday morning, the congregation voted unanimously that afternoon to issue the call
The NicosiaCommunityChurch was established by the Church of Scotland in 1953 to minister to British citizens residing on the island, which was British protectorate at the time. After Cyprus was granted it’s independence in 1960 the church dissolved its association with the Church of Scotland to avoid any semblance of colonialism, but continued to maintain its Reformed heritage as it sought to serve residents of the Nicosia. NCC today is a multinational congregation that ministers to long-term residents, members of the diplomatic corps of several nations, along with other foreign-born workers living on Cyprus.
Burns will be installed on Sunday, October 4th. Representatives from the GreekEvangelicalChurch, Anglican Church, and Cypriot Orthodox church have been invited to his installation service. The Reverend Don Ward, the PCA pastor of GraceCommunityChurch in Charlottesville and another of Terry’s close friends, will travel to Cyprus to preach at the installation.
At his final meeting of the Blue Ridge Presbytery before leaving for Cyprus, Burns issued an invitation for the men to schedule one of their future meetings at his church as soon as possible!