Katie Beth Bordwine: Pastor at Law

Posted by Monica Hoel
Even though Katie Beth is an attorney with Legal Aid of North Carolina in Boone, she is spending a fair amount of time in a church pulpit these days.

While some folks might be surprised that the Elon Law School grad is pastoring a church in Abingdon (Mountain View United Methodist), Katie Beth says the ministry is something she’s thought about since her pre-teen years.

She has a vivid memory from a moment at the big United Methodist gathering in Gatlinburg called Resurrection; she liked that the speaker that year talked about God as someone who would listen and care and help during times of need. “That was about a month after I had played a demon from hell in my neighbor’s Pentecostal church Christmas play. So hearing that God was kind and loved me was great news!” She wondered if church ministry might be something she’d like to do with her life.

Katie Beth has recently returned home to Saltville, Virginia, to help her family through some difficult days. She helped her grandmother figure, June Totten E&H ’62, with her end-of-life care: “Junie” died Sept. 25, 2021. And around that same time, Katie’s mother was diagnosed with a brain tumor: she died March 9, 2022. When Katie Beth returned to Saltville she talked with a pastor friend who eventually raised the topic of those old thoughts about going into the ministry. “She offered me a job as a pastor and I said, ‘I don’t think you know me well enough to put me in charge of a flock!’” But before she knew it, she was filling in as pastor of several small country churches.

Katie Beth’s faith is big on love and acceptance, with an open mind to varying views and an open heart to all. And even though she and her parishioners don’t always see eye-to-eye, she is committed to a respectful and open dialogue that allows everyone to share their beliefs. “We don’t have to see things the same way to be in church together.”

She listens to each church congregation to see how they wish to do worship – allowing that the folks at Ebeneezer United Methodist and Tate’s Chapel United Methodist may wish to structure their services differently. But her message for any church is consistent: “We’re put here to love one another…to take care of our people. Our people aren’t just the people who look like us, or talk like us, or love like us, or move around in the world like we do.”

On the Duck Pond Wall podcast, you can enjoy a conversation with Katie Beth that was recorded back in January of 2022, and you’ll find that no matter what her own circumstances might be, she has a contagious laugh and faith in a loving God that will pull you right into her joy. And you’ll find out why her next project might involve a CDL license.

  • Katie Beth Bordwine
    Emory & Henry Class of 2016

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  • <div class="lw_news_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/news/903-headed-to-the-virginia-highlands-festival-this"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/383,118,1175,910/6560_67371737_644792832707714_971696063926763520_n.rev.1563759429.webp 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/383,118,1175,910/6560_67371737_644792832707714_971696063926763520_n.rev.1563759429.webp 2x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/383,118,1175,910/6560_67371737_644792832707714_971696063926763520_n.rev.1563759429.jpg 2x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/383,118,1175,910/6560_67371737_644792832707714_971696063926763520_n.rev.1563759429.jpg" alt="Liv Jennings, E&H Class of 2019." width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/383,118,1175,910/6560_67371737_644792832707714_971696063926763520_n.rev.1563759429.jpg 2x" data-max-w="792" data-max-h="792" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </a></span></div><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_news_headline"><a href="/live/news/903-headed-to-the-virginia-highlands-festival-this">Headed to the Virginia Highlands Festival This Week?</a></h4><div class="lw_news_summary"> Look for a 2019 E&H grad (Liv Jennings) who’s making the event thrive! <a href="/live/news/903-headed-to-the-virginia-highlands-festival-this" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div></div>
  • <div class="lw_news_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/news/1538-patrick-smith-is-howling-for-nc-state"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1092,1092/9056_FB_IMG_1583779682958.rev.1606837178.webp 1x, /live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1092,1092/9056_FB_IMG_1583779682958.rev.1606837178.webp 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1092,1092/9056_FB_IMG_1583779682958.rev.1606837178.webp 3x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1092,1092/9056_FB_IMG_1583779682958.rev.1606837178.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1092,1092/9056_FB_IMG_1583779682958.rev.1606837178.jpg 3x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1092,1092/9056_FB_IMG_1583779682958.rev.1606837178.jpg" alt="Patrick Smith, Emory & Henry Class of 2012." width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1092,1092/9056_FB_IMG_1583779682958.rev.1606837178.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1092,1092/9056_FB_IMG_1583779682958.rev.1606837178.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1092" data-max-h="1092" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </a></span></div><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_news_headline"><a href="/live/news/1538-patrick-smith-is-howling-for-nc-state">Patrick Smith is Howling for NC State</a></h4><div class="lw_news_summary"> Patrick Smith came to Emory & Henry as a quiet, unassuming sort of guy: and now he’s one of the public faces of NC State. <a href="/live/news/1538-patrick-smith-is-howling-for-nc-state" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div></div>
  • <div class="lw_news_image"><span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/news/1325-got-a-minute-catch-up-with-vanessa-capalad-burrell"><picture class="lw_image"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,337,337/8373_vanessa_capalad.rev.1595383020.webp 1x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,337,337/8373_vanessa_capalad.rev.1595383020.jpg 1x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,337,337/8373_vanessa_capalad.rev.1595383020.jpg" alt="Vanessa Capalad Burrell, E&H Class of 1992" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="337" data-max-h="337" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </a></span></div><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_news_headline"><a href="/live/news/1325-got-a-minute-catch-up-with-vanessa-capalad-burrell">Got a minute? Catch up with Vanessa Capalad Burrell (’92)</a></h4><div class="lw_news_summary"> Even in the midst of a pandemic, she’s hiring! <a href="/live/news/1325-got-a-minute-catch-up-with-vanessa-capalad-burrell" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div></div>