- Special Sections
- Public Notices
Los Alamos is a remarkable place for a pastorate, in the opinion of Rev. Dr. Harry A. Cole, the incoming interim pastor of White Rock United Presbyterian Church.
Cole comes to the pulpit most recently from Westminster Church in Roswell and previously from the First Presbyterian Church and the First Christian Church in El Paso, Texas.
While in El Paso, he was also the executive director of INSIGHTS, the city science museum, an experience that piqued his interest in a pastorate in Los Alamos.
Cole received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Baltimore and his doctorate from the Vanderbilt School of Divinity. In over 40 years in the ministry, he has also been a university professor, an administrator for the Maryland Department of Education and pastor for numerous Presbyterian churches. He brings a wealth of experience to the White Rock Presbyterian Church and to the community of Los Alamos as well.
White Rock United Presbyterian Church was chartered in 1966 after some years as a mission church of the Presbytery of Santa Fe.
As the White Rock community was being developed, Home Planning and Construction from Roswell had the contract for the second phase of a development known as Mountain Meadows. Their superintendent, who came from the Roswell Presbyterian Church, noted the lack of a Presbyterian church.
He petitioned Santa Fe Presbytery for a mission and the rest is history. WRPC’s longest serving pastor was Rev. Harry Chronis, who served the congregation for the last 25 years. Chronis responded to a call to Knoxville, Tenn. in June to begin a new position as an associate pastor.
Within church vocations, there is an expanding role for the interim pastor that seeks to provide a bridge between pastorates.
The practice of interim ministry has its own training and knowledge set. Cole has extensive experience as an interim pastor and has taught this specialized ministry to colleagues.
He knows Ghost Ranch, the Presbyterian Conference Center in Northern New Mexico, where many ministers of the faith go to learn the skills and practice of interim ministry.
While the interim pastor leads a time of transition, the congregation will seek an installed pastor to serve the congregation on a permanent basis. In the past 45 years, the White Rock Church has had 10 pastors, both installed and interim.
In the near future, a reception and a dinner will be announced to welcome Cole to the pulpit. The church is at 310 Rover Blvd. in White Rock with services at 9:15 a.m.