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The Team

Who We Are

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Lawrence Dennis

Interim Senior Pastor

“I count it a blessing being called as your interim pastor. I look forward to getting to know you as brothers and sisters in Christ. You are a congregation known for outreach, love and mission mindedness. I hope you get to know me through my ministry. I am a native Arkansan but have lived in South Carolina since 1980 with my wife Ruth who was born and raised in Columbia. We have two daughters, Leslie and Lauren, and three grandchildren. I look forward getting to our journey together during this interim period of searching for a new pastor for the next chapter of St. Andrews Baptist Church.


In Christ,


803-798-7325, Ext. 223

Murphy Peele

Director of Finance and administration

Murphy began work at St Andrews Baptist in April 2022.  He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a degree in Business Administration.  Murphy has been involved in ministry since December 1982 and has worked for Baptist state conventions in both North and South Carolina and served with multiple churches in SC.  He is married to Donna and they have two grown children, Amy and Ben and one grandchild, with two additional grandchildren due anytime.  Murphy enjoys reading and working in the yard.

803-798-7325, Ext. 224


Leonard Washington

Facilites coordinator

I have been a member of the staff since 2016. I am a retired military veteran of 20 years of which half my military career was with the 82nd Airborne Division as U.S. Paratrooper in Fort Bragg North Carolina. My primary job in the military was a 25WP which is a Telecommunication Chief. I obtained the rank of Sergeant First Class before retiring in 2007.  After the military I attended Cantura College where I received a degree in Heating, Ventilation, Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration (HVACR).

Before coming to Saint Andrews Baptist Church, I worked for Atlantic Tower Services out of Orlando Florida as a HVAC technician maintaining cellular phone towers in the southeastern region. I also worked as HVAC technician for 2nd Wind Heating and Air.

I am married to my beautiful wife Jill who I met and married in the Philippines.  We have handsome son 14 year son. The mantras that I live by are: Good things come from change, I embrace the unknown,  Leaders lead from the front, Do not set the example be the example, Family comes first and always strive to become the best version of yourself.

803-798-7325, Ext. 247

Cell- (803) 201-0543

Crystal preston

Church Life Coordinator

Crystal C Preston is our Church Life Coordinator since 2019. She is a native from Greenville, SC and graduated from Everest University with AS in Science / Business Administration. 

Crystal is married to Johnny a native of Wagner, SC and he has 21 years in telecommunication. He is a lead tech for Windstream. They love spending time with their parents, two boys, and grandchildren as much as possible. Their fur baby, Raptor gets most of their attention.

In her spare time, she likes to work on Color Street and crafts (resign art, decals and t-shirts). Johnny helps with both side hobbies, and “He is the perfect administrative assistant”. 

803-798-7325, Ext. 221


Emily bundrick

communications coordinator

Emily recently joined the SABC office in 2022. A graduate of Toccoa Falls College, she has a BA in English, and one in Bible and Theology. Hobbies of Emily's include swimming, reading, writing, and photography. She is close to her friends and family, and is the middle child of three.

803-798-7325, Ext. 227

Jonathan Kupper

minister of music

Jonathan N. Kupper is a professional music and worship director, composer/arranger, and pianist. He has recieved various awards and honors including a commission prize fellowship to the Tanglewood Music Center, BMI’s Pete Carpenter Fellowship, and the American Prize for excellence in the performing arts (third place) for his one-act opera, The Monkey’s Paw. Mr. Kupper received preparatory training at the Eastman School of Music and went on to study at the New England Conservatory of Music, New York University (musical theater writing program), and the University of Southern California (scoring for motion pictures).  Other original compositions include: Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra; Greenwich Village Suite (wind ensemble); an original setting of the spiritual, “He Never Said a Mumblin’ Word” (choir and orchestra), Facebookatorio: a concert musical, Hoarders: the musical, and many other song-cycles and chamber pieces. Jonathan has worked extensively as a professional music director for the theatre and in churches, where he continues to compose and arrange sacred music on a regular basis. Jonathan is thrilled to be called to the position of Music & Worship Arts Director at SABC. New to Columbia, he and his wife, Adrienne, are making their home with their two children, Evelyn and David.


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Beth Tolar

Minister to children

Beth has been a member of St. Andrews since 2012. She joined our church staff in 2022 serving in our Children's Ministry. When Beth is not serving at the church, she enjoys spending time with her husband of 34 years, William. They have 3 sons who live in the Columbia area and one grandson who fills their lives with absolute JOY! She loves sharing Jesus with children, especially babies. It is important that children have a happy, safe, learning environment where they can understand Biblical truth that builds a strong foundation. 


Merri Christy tolar

Weekday preschool director

Merri Christy graduated from Converse College with a BA in Early Childhood and Elementary Education, and from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary with a masters in Christian Education with an emphasis in Childhood Ministry.  She is married to Jeffrey, and they have 2 daughters.  In her free time, she enjoys spending time with family, reading and going to the mountains.

803-731-2621 (Preschool Office)

803-798-7325, Ext. 238

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