Dr. William Faulds
In 1952 William Faulds became the third pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Ardmore. He came to us after serving as pastor of churches in Nebraska, Colorado, and as an associate pastor of the Fourth Presbyterian Church of Chicago, Illinois. Like his predecessor, Dr. Frew, Dr. Faulds was born in Scotland and came to this country as a young child. He graduated from Hanover College and McCormick Seminary, later receiving a doctor of divinity from Hastings College. During World War II he served as a Chaplain in the Air Force and received the Bronze Star. Dr. Faulds arrived at Ardmore with his wife Maxine, and their three-year-old twins, Janie and Jim. His starting salary was $10,000 per year “together with free use of the Manse.”
During Dr. Faulds’ 23-year tenure our church saw its greatest period of growth. Membership increased from 1500 to over 2200. The Christian Education Building was dedicated, and the sanctuary expanded to twice its original size. Dr. Faulds’ special gifts in preaching and teaching became well-known throughout the area. Dr. Faulds also became a leader in the larger church, serving as Moderator of the Philadelphia Presbytery, and as the first President of the Board of Trustees at Warren Wilson College in North Carolina.
But what Dr. Faulds is most remembered for is his deep love for God and the warmth of his personality. Elder John Shrader provided this memorial to Dr. Faulds:
“As he taught and preached to us, we were blessed by his simple directness and clarity while imparting the profound truths of God’s Word. Whether he spoke to us from the pulpit or in private conversation, we always sensed the warmth of his affection. He was a window to the love of God which he ever held in his heart.”
In December, 1975 Dr. Faulds died while serving his 23rd year as pastor of our church. He was 63 years of age. Nearly 700 people crowded into the sanctuary to attend his memorial service. Through the outpouring of grief came a resolve to commemorate his life with fitting memorials. Today Dr. Faulds’ ministry continues through the William Faulds Preaching Seminar at Princeton Seminary and the Faulds Memorial Trust at Warren Wilson College. Both endowments were created and funded through efforts of our congregation. One of his last projects as pastor, the creation of a new church library, was named in his honor. The William Faulds Memorial Library continues to offer a large selection of Christian books, including many from Dr. Faulds’ personal collection.
The Faulds’ family continued to be devoted to our church for many years. Dr. Faulds’ wife, Maxine, was a tireless worker in the Women’s Association and other church functions. His daughter, Janie, was a leader in the church, serving as Elder until her untimely death this year. We continue to be blessed by all they have done for the church and we give thanks to God for their service.