The Reverend Robert L. Brown


"A 'cradle' Episcopalian, I actually grew up at Saint Matthew's before beginning college in the late 1970s. I returned to the parish as the rector in 2003. Prior to seminary I worked as a legislative assistant and aide to Congresswoman Liz Patterson in Washington DC and in Spartanburg.

"I am passionate about the work of the Church to bring about the Kingdom of God. We are called, as faithful witnesses and disciples, to proclaim Christ in every way.  We do this best when our actions match our words. I believe we have a special obligation to the poor and the outcast, and we must serve as Stewards of God's Creation.  I am currently doing doctoral work at Sewanee to sharpen that focus.  My family, the outdoors, and writing round out a very full life." - Rob Brown

A graduate of the University of South Carolina with a BA in History, and an MDiv from Sewanee, The University of the South. Rob is married to Sandra McGee Brown, an operating room nurse, and they have two adult children, Zach and Becca.

The Reverend Paul R. Abernathy

Assistant Rector

A native of St. Louis, Missouri, Father Paul received his BA in political science from Westminster College, Fulton, MO, and his MDiv from The General Theological Seminary, NYC. 

In 1977, ordained a deacon and, in 1978, a priest, Father Paul served congregations in Columbia, MO, Chicago, IL, Charleston, SC, and Washington, DC. On February 1, 2015, he retired, moving to Spartanburg, SC, to begin his “rehirement” working for his wife at their bed & breakfast and events facility, Clevedale Historic Inn and Gardens. Since March 1, 2020, he serves St. Matthew’s and Father Rob as the Assistant to the Rector.

Fr. Paul’s theology and ethics are centered around the themes of love and justice, unconditional benevolence and equity for all people, incarnate in the life and ministry of Jesus. 

An avid writer and blogger, in 2013, Fr. Paul published a book of sermons, For the Living of These Days. He is joyously married above his station of life to the former Pontheolla Mack of Bishopville, SC, who always is the best reason to know him. Their daughter, Kristin, resides in Baltimore, MD.

Beth Boyd

Parish Administrator

Beth Boyd has been the administrator at St. Matthew's since August, 2004. St. Matthew's is the third church she has served in that capacity. She was the secretary at Church of the Resurrection in Greenwood when she and her husband Will first married and later at A.R. Presbyterian Church in Greenwood. Beth and Will have two sons, Trey and Graham, who grew up at St. Matthew's. Will and Beth enjoy being involved in the many activities they find at St. Matthew's.

Barbara Coleman, 

Preschool Director


Donna Simpson

Music Director

Donna has served as church organist and choirmaster at St. Matthews for 16 years. She is from Rockford, Illinois and a music education major from Bob Jones University in Greenville, SC where she met her husband Mark, a native of Spartanburg. They have two children, a son and a daughter, and five grandchildren.

Donna knew at a very young age that God had called her into Church music ministry, a passion she has enjoyed her entire life. Working with Children’s music has been a special interest for her but leading and inspiring adults in worship through music is a gift received from our Heavenly Father. “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” (Colossians 3:16)


The Vestry is the “local governing board of the Parish,” according to the By-Laws of St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church, Spartanburg, South Carolina. The Vestry’s mission is both spiritual, working with the Clergy to discern God’s call for the Parish; and temporal, in our stewardship of church property and resources. 


The Vestry applies, and is guided by, the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church of the United States of America; the Constitution and Canons of the Diocese of Upper South Carolina; the laws of the United States Government, State of South Carolina, and Spartanburg, South Carolina; and the By-Laws of St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church.


Vestry members are legal representatives and agents of the parish. In seeking to fulfill its mission, the Vestry collaborates with, and is supportive of, the Clergy.  Vestry members fulfill responsibilities inherent in the mission by working with individuals and groups within the Parish, and within the broader community.     


Shannon Bishop, Senior Warden

Jeff Jennings (2023)

Matt Cox (2023)

Atha McBride (2024)

Gail Stellar (2024)

Greg Bulman, Junior Warden (2024)

Heather Yevcak  - Treasurer

Angela Viney - Vestry Clerk

Rich Coleman

Nisha McFarland

Michelle Pierce