Church Leadership

The Session is comprised of the Pastor and Elders who are elected by the congregation and ordained. The Session is responsible for the mission and government of the congregation.

Clerk of the Session, elected by the Session, records the transactions of the Session, keeps its rolls of membership and attendance, preserves its records.

Deacons are elected by the congregation and ordained. They minister to those who are in need, to the sick, to the friendless, and to any who may be in distress, both within and beyond the congregation.

Committees of the Session

  • Worship and Music is responsible for the overall worship life of the congregation.
  • Stewardship and Finance is responsible for making conscious, purposeful decisions regarding the use our gifts of treasure to do the work God is calling us to do.
  • Mission, Outreach, Membership plans activities that include and connect the greater community and invite them to worship and participate in the life of the church.
  • Fellowship organizes activities that enable members of the congregation to be in fellowship with one another.
  • Christian Education ("The E-Team") plans and implements the Christian Education program for youth and adults, including Sunday Church School and Wednesday Soup and Bread studies.
  • Building and Grounds is responsible for the upkeep, preventive care, maintenance and development of all church properties.

Clerk of Session

Betty Groth, Clerk of Session.

A thread that runs through my life from the beginning until the present is the Presbyterian Church.  I grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where my family was very active in the life and ministry of Southminster Presbyterian Church.  In 1970, my husband, Don, and I were married in the Tulsa Presbyterian Church where he was a member.  Through the years (almost 47) we have found a Presbyterian church home wherever we roamed.

I began my working career in the drafting room of a small oil company in Tulsa.  After moving to Houston, Texas, in 1973 I went to work for Conoco also in the drafting room of the International Exploration Group.  As drafting became increasingly more automated, I moved into computer mapping and data management.  I ended my career after moving to the northwest by earning a Bachelor of Science degree in geography at the age of 57.

Yachats has been our home for the last eight years.   We love this place: the beauty of the landscape, the friendly people of the community and most of all our YCPC family.



Don Groth, Chair, Stewardship and Finance Committee; Treasurer, Endowment Committee. 

I was born and grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and lived next to John Knox Presbyterian Church, convenient.  I completed my college education at Tulsa University in 1970 with an accounting degree.

Betty and I were married in 1970.  We lived in St. Louis, Missouri, for two years and Houston, Texas, for thirty years.  We moved to the northwest in 2001, and I completed my CPA work career in Portland, Oregon.  We have lived in our Yachats house since 2008.

I have served as an elder and trustee in Presbyterian churches in Texas and participated in teaching, singing and other activities through the years as a Presbyterian. 

Pam Luderitz, Chair, Mission Outreach and Membership

I was born and raised in Southern California. I graduated from Boston University and from University of San Francisco. I taught science and physical education at Watsonville High School, California. I’ve worked with professional race cars - Mazda, Nissan and Jaguar in their GPT (Grand Prototype Touring) programs; for IMSA (International Motorsports Association) doing registration and timing and scoring; and for NASCAR  in the Tower and in timing and scoring traveling with the Cup, Truck, and Xfinity series.  I love gardening, cooking, books, travel and children.  I became a member of YCPC in June of 1998; was ordained as a deacon in January 2006 and as an elder in December 2006.

Charlene McLain, Chair of Fellowship, Endowment, and Nominating committees

Charlene McLain, in her sixth year as an Elder, serves as chair of Fellowship, Endowment, and Nominating committees, and sings in the choir.  A native Oregonian and life-long Presbyterian, she has been a member of Roseburg and Salem congregations before moving to Yachats.  She enjoys music, history, and genealogy, as well as having membership in DAR and the P.E.O. Sisterhood.

Debra (DJ) Novgrod, Chair, Worship and Music Committee

I reside in Yachats and am married to Sharon Bliss.  We have a son, Andrew, who just turned 14 in April.  I am a broker at Emerald Coast Realty and look at my work as a ministry.

I enjoy traveling, golfing and gardening.

Nan Scott, Chair, Personnel Committee,  Church Treasurer.

I have been a member of YCPC since 2004 after my husband and I retired from Oregon State University and moved to Yachats.  I have served as treasurer of the church since 2007 and on several committees including Christian Education, Stewardship and Finance, Outreach and Mission, and Personnel.  I enjoy working with youth and families and feel that this church plays a vital role in the Yachats community and beyond.

John Toepher, Chair, Building and Grounds Committee.

I am 80-plus years of age; happily married 63 years to Nina.  We have two children, five grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

I was born and raised Roman Catholic.  I became a Presbyterian in my mid-twenties. I’ve been active in YCPC since 2000 or so.

I enjoy God’s gift of music.


Doris Gardenhire 

I moved to Yachats in 1945.  Later I was one of the 26 people who started the Presbyterian Church.  My brother (Charles Canfield) and I are the last two of the original members.  I was ordained as a deacon in December 1999, and have served several terms since then.  I am also on the Fellowship Committee.  I love our church. 

Brenda Maxfield 

I became a member of YCPC in December of 2010.  I was ordained as a deacon January 2016.  In addition to serving as a Deacon, I also serve as the Financial Secretary and am active in the YCPC music program.



Fran Morse

I grew up in a tight church community in a rural area in the eastern United States.  The Church of the Brethren lived up to its name.  One of the principles was that we were brothers and sisters and that “your joys and woes are my joys and woes.”  I believe I have been looking for that strong sense of community ever since.

My career as a psychologist was spent in Salt Lake City, Utah, where I lived almost 40 years with my late husband, also a psychologist.  We bought our home in Yachats in 2000 and retired here full-time in 2006.

Now I have returned to Yachats, a new home, a new love, and a new sense of community.  I am “home again” in the Yachts Community Presbyterian Church.

Maryellen (Flescher) Morton

I was born June 16, 1930 at Lorella, Oregon, Klamath County.  My family moved to Waldport in 1939 and on to Yachats in 1940.  I have lived here 77 years.  I first attended the Little Log Church when I was 12.  I babysat at this church for several years.  All five of my children went to this church and many of my grandchildren did also. 

Mary Emma Parks, Secretary

I moved from Eugene in 1996 when I retired from teaching.  I have been a member of Yachats Community Presbyterian since then.  I have served as Clerk of Session, Deacon, on the Fellowship Committee, and I sing in the choir.


Texie Price, Moderator

I moved to Waldport from Willamette Valley in 1993, just to join YCPC!  I had been here to visit and decided this is where I need to be.  The friendly congregation drew me here and has kept me here.  I have been an Elder and a Deacon here in past years.  I am widowed and have two adult sons.





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