our ministry team

We have a passion for people, our city and our world. Our culture and leadership is characterized by worship, the love of God, and a genuine call to ministry. These core values have been shaped by our rich history of great co-workers and energy; always pressing forward in our call to love God and love others.

  • PASTOR wes neal

    senior pastor  


    Pastor Wes and his family moved to North Carolina after serving as missionaries at Davuilevu Theological College in Fiji.  Rev. Neal was raised in Virginia and the Philippines, and, after graduating with a BA in History and Asian Studies from the University of Michigan, has lived in both Indonesia and India. He has a dual calling to serve as a pastor and a missionary, hoping to share the gospel like a missionary in his pastoral work, and to pastoral work that points people to the mission of God. He met his wife, Jerusha, who is currently teaching at Duke Divinity School, when they were students at Princeton Theological Seminary. Pastor Wes is a member of the Cal-Pac Annual Conference and the very proud father of two teenage kids, Mercy, and Josiah. He loves to be outside, whether in the garden or on a hiking trail with his dog.

  • Kim Philpott

    Minister of Music

    Mrs. Philpott is a pianist, vocalist, and music director who has lived and worked in Durham for over 15 years. She is married to her husband Matt and they have two children. Kim has served as Director of Music in Methodist Churches since 2001, including at Epworth UMC for 11 years, and most recently at St. Luke’s UMC in Sanford. Her experience is varied and includes adult choirs, youth choirs, children’s choirs, instrumentalists, handbells, preschool music classes and various worship ensembles. She graduated with a Bachelor of Music Education from Lander University in her native South Carolina, and has a Masters degree in Music Performance from the University of North Carolina – Greensboro. In addition to her work at Asbury UMC, Kim has a private music studio where she instructs students of all ages in piano and voice (visit www.kimphilpottmusic.com)


    Ministry intern

    Rachel Price, a second year student at Duke Divinity School is our new Ministry Intern. She holds two Bachelor of Science degrees from Indiana Wesleyan University in Honors Humanities and Biblical Literature as well as a minor in Christian Ministries. As the child of a United Methodist pastor, she has lived in several places, starting with Raleigh, and spent most of her childhood and teen years in western Michigan.  Music and worship have always been a vital part of her life, and Rachel is happiest when playing the piano or guitar and singing. In her spare time, Rachel likes to spend time with friends, and volunteer at Saving Grace, a dog rescue organization in Wake Forest. Regardless of the time of day, she typically always has a cup of coffee in hand. Rachel is a certified candidate for ordination in the North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church.

  • marie phelps

    administrative assistant


    Marie joined the Ministry Team at Asbury in May of 2004 after a 22 year career with Durham Technical Community College where she worked in the Marketing and Communications Department. Marie truly lives out her faith and commitment to Christ as she serves at Asbury UMC. Marie handles the administrative matters with joy and dedication and brings a wonderful spirit to all the workings of the church. Marie is from Durham, is married to Rusty, and they have three grown children, Greg, Jessica, and Travis. She is a member of Gorman Baptist Church, in Durham.

  • nancy lehman

    preschool director


    Nancy joined Asbury Preschool in September 2000, after a twenty year career in Mortgage Lending. Embracing this new career change, Nancy went back to school, earning a A.A.S. in Early Childhood Education followed by a Bachelor's in Human Development and Family Studies from UNC-G. She has been happily married to John, a V.P. at North State Bank, since 1998. They have two children– Greyson and Lily. Nancy also has two adult children, Brad and Johanna, and two beautiful grandchildren. Nancy is an active member of Watts Street Baptist Church. In her spare time, she enjoys movies, reading, and yearns to spend more time at the N.C. coast.  

    Click here to visit Asbury's Preschool Website

A Faith community at asbury

If you seek deeper meaning in life, and want to know more about matters of faith, we welcome your participation and hope that you will find Asbury a solid place to ask tough questions while finding new hope and life. One of the greatest strengths and gifts of Asbury is Christian love, support, and nurture of one another along side ministry and mission that makes a difference in the lives of others. Please accept our heartfelt welcome. We pray that you will feel at home at Asbury, and that you will be back for more!