Who We Are

Embers to a Flame is a ministry of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham, Alabama.

Dr. Harry Reeder, Senior Pastor
Rev. Lynn Downing, Pastor of Church Revitalization
Mr. Joe Weatherly, Fanning the Flame Coach
Rev. Manny Bersach, Fanning the Flame Coach

205.776.5399 • embers@briarwood.org


• We believe the Bible to be the inspired, the only infallible, authoritative Word of God.

• We believe that there is one God, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

• We believe in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, in His miracles, in His vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood, in His bodily resurrection, in His ascension to the right hand of the Father, and in His personal return in power and glory.

• We believe that for the salvation of lost and sinful people, regeneration by the Holy Spirit is
absolutely essential.

• We believe in the present ministry of the Holy Spirit by whose indwelling the Christian is enabled to live a godly life.

• We believe in the resurrection of both the saved and the lost; they that are saved unto the resurrection of life and they that are lost unto the resurrection of damnation.

• We believe in the spiritual unity of believers in our Lord Jesus Christ.

Harry Reeder

Dr. Harry Reeder is Senior Pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham, Alabama. He has served the Lord in numerous ways over the past 35 years including ministering through a daily radio program, “In Perspective.” He is passionate about the ministry of church revitalization and authored, From Embers to a Flame: How God Can Revitalize Your Church. He has led Embers Conferences all around the world including South Africa, Kenya, Australia, Uganda, and South Korea.


Lynn Downing

Rev. Lynn Downing is the Pastor of Church Revitalization at Briarwood Presbyterian Church, after serving for 37 years as the Senior Pastor of Lake Osborne Pres. Church in Lake Worth, FL. Lynn has served on several regional and national committees in his denomination, including both home and foreign missions ministries, and has ministered to missionaries on fields in South America, Asia, and Europe.


Ligon Duncan

Dr. Ligon Duncan is Senior Pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Jackson, Mississippi and has served as the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America. Dr. Duncan is the President of the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals and is an Adjunct Professor at Reformed Theological Seminary. He has authored numerous books, with the most recent being Fear Not! Death and the After Life from a Christian Perspective.


Wilson Benton

Dr. Wilson Benton, after 21 years as pastor of Kirk of the Hills, St. Louis, Missouri, currently serves as interim pastor of Christ Presbyterian Church in Nashville, Tennessee. He also is the Special Counsel to the President and Senior Associate for the Center of Ministry Leadership at Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis.


Mike Ross

Dr. Mike Ross planned to be a priest and was educated in Catholic schools before he was converted at the age of twenty-seven. He left a career in business to pursue full time ministry and presently serves as senior pastor of Christ Covenant in Charlotte, NC. Dr. Ross has authored two books, Preaching for Revitalization and The Light of the Psalms: Developing Your Faith with Every Psalm.


Joe Weatherly

Mr. Joe Weatherly serves as the Fanning the Flame Coach and President of Weatherly Consulting, a company committed to increasing kingdom effectiveness by ensuring clarity of vision, careful planning and effective accountability structures for churches. With four years of pastoral experience, Joe also has 35 years of experience building vision and creating strategic plans in a multi-national financial services company.