Staff and Council

Meet Our Staff

Matthew Smith


Pastor Matt began his ministry with the people of St. Mark’s in an interesting time in the life of the congregation.  His first year here included a global pandemic, major building renovations at St. Mark’s, hiring two full-time staff people, and a fire in his temporary office. He’s reasonably confident he wasn’t responsible for any of those things, but through it all, the people of St. Mark’s were resilient, committed, and faithful. Clearly there isn’t much that this congregation can’t handle with God’s help.  It is his deep honor and privilege to walk with people through the life of faith, proclaiming God’s love for all people and our call to follow. Please reach out if you’d like to talk about faith! Outside of church life he enjoys being outdoors, ultimate frisbee leagues, and nerding out about solar energy (check out the St. Mark’s system). He and his wife, Keri, have two young children.  They’ve lived, worked, and trained in the central parts of North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas, and they’re delighted to call St. Mark’s and Asheville home.

Katie Rivers

Director of Discipleship and Faith Formation

Deacon Katie was born and raised in New York, but has found a home in the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina. She has been serving alongside the people of St. Mark’s since 2014 as Director of Discipleship and Faith Formation. She loves spending time with God’s children of all ages, encouraging lifelong learning and daily discipleship. 

Deacon Katie received her B.A. in Religion and Music from Concordia College- New York, and a M.A. with a certificate in Deaf Ministry from Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, IN. She serves on the North Carolina Synod Candidacy Committee, and enjoys writing curriculum and devotional material. 

Deacon Katie is an avid cribbage and bridge player, a lover of music, watercolor artist, and amature sausage maker.  She loves cooking for family and friends, and can usually be found with her adorable and quirky Basset Hound, Wally.

David Anderson


Cantor David Anderson leads and encourages the song of the people. Nothing thrills him more than the sound of the congregation singing together! He is also privileged to direct the Chancel Choir, Sonrise Singers, and Celebration Handbell Ringers, and to work with other instrumentalists and soloists. During worship he plays the piano and pipe organ (click here for organ specifications). Outside of church he may be found playing cards, collecting fountain pens, assailing his neighbors with a 1956 Vega 5-string banjo, and trying to catch trout. He graduated from Concordia College New York with a BA in English, holds a Certificate in Sacred Music from Lenoir-Rhyne University, and is a Colleague of the American Guild of Organists.

Steve Henry

Facilities Manager

Steve Henry was born in Germany and is a long-time resident of Asheville. Having worked in a variety of trades, he brings many skills with him for the task here at St. Mark’s. He is happily married to Anita and has 2 children and 3 grandchildren. Steve enjoys hiking, sailing, canoeing, kayaking. He also has a hidden talent (and passion) for making giant bubbles…yes, BUBBLES!

Danielle Barker

Parish Administrator

Danielle Barker, is a native of Asheville, North Carolina and still has many family members in the area. Danielle and her family are often found exploring the beauty of Western North Carolina. Danielle’s background is in elementary education but has found peace and purpose working as a Parish Administrator in a liturgically based church. She enjoys maintaining relationships between parishioners and church staff with office task such as scheduling and communication. She has a passion for literacy and continues to nurture this passion through curriculum development and pleasure reading – when time allows!

Linda McHenry, visitation pastor, st mark's lutheran church downtown asheville NC

Linda McHenry

Pastor of Caring Ministries

Pastor Linda was born and reared in Kingsport, Tennessee.  After graduating from Dobyns Bennet High School she went to Centre College in Danville, Kentucky where she met and married her first husband.  The Army relocated them to Berlin West Germany where she had her son Adam.  On returning to the states she lived in Ohio and then California where she and her husband divorced.

She then attended DeAnza Community College and then San Jose state University Where she graduated with a degree in Psychology.    She then enrolled a Santa Clara University to get a Master’s in Counseling Psychology and a license in Marriage and Family Therapy.  Linda met and married her current husband Jack.  He worked at Apple and she had a private practice.

They moved to Half Moon Bay and began attending Coastside Lutheran Church.  What drew them to the ELCA was the focus on grace and the beauty of the liturgy and the invitation to the table each week.   The pastor at Coastside encouraged them to follow a dream to go to seminary and in 1999 they left jobs and CA and moved to Asheville to pursue that dream.  Pastor David Martin at St. Mark’s invited them to consider Lutheran Southern seminary in Columbia and in 2002, following a sudden and severe illness for Jack which left as mysteriously as it came, they did just that.  In 2006 they graduated with MDiv. Degrees and were ordained in 2007.  Pastor Linda and her husband served at Christ’s Church  Stanley, NC for 5 years and then Agape fellowship in Gastonia.  In 2015 they returned to Asheville where Pastor Linda joined the staff as Caring Ministries Pastor.

Due to the pandemic and a recent diagnosis of Myasthenia Gravis Pastor Linda works from home.  When able she is available for phone counseling or on-line contact.  She prays for you daily and is grateful that she can still serve this grace-filled community.

Meet Our Council

Back Row: Bryan Short, Dave Epley, Mary Brady, Jason Jones, Debbie Layne, Jim Bassler

Front Row: Bonnie Morris, Cindy Lauster, Linda Kinsing, Anne Blackwell, Amy Zellers,
Judy McKay