Figure Eight Island Church

Figure Eight Island Church invites residents and guests to join its services each Sunday morning at 8:30 am in the Yacht Club. Weekly services are held each Sunday and continue through the Sunday of Labor Day weekend. Once again this year our managing minister will be Rev. Bob Haywood, who has been with us since 1996.

2021 Summer Schedule


  • May 30, Gen. Dan McNeill

  • June 6, Rev. Bob Haywood

  • June 13, Rev. Bob Haywood

  • June 20, Rev. John R. Ragsdale

  • June 27, Rev Jim White


  • July 11, Dr. Jerry Bron

  • July 18, Rev. Robert W. Haywood

  • July 25, Rev. Jay Sidebotham

  • August 1, Rev. Robert W. Haywood

  • August 8, Rev. Paul Johansson

  • August 15, The Very Rev. Milton C. Williams, Jr.

  • August 22, Rev. Bob Haywood

  • August 29, Rev. Steve Hein

  • September 5, Rev. Bob Haywood

Read more about this season's guest speakers below.

All services will be a time for refreshments and fellowship afterward in the Lobby Lounge.

Rev. Robert W. Haywood III

Bob is a retired Presbyterian minister who has served Figure 8 Island Church since 1996. He has spent his career as Campus Minister at universities in Texas, Florida and Pennsylvania. Most recently, he served as Campus Minister twenty-eight years at UNCW Wilmington. A lifelong sailor, he and wife Deborah love to travel. They have lived in Wilmington since 1980 and are blessed to have two of their four children, and two grandchildren living nearby. 

Introducing our 2021 Guest Speakers

Gen. Dan McNeill, Guest Speaker

May 30, 2021

Raised in the eastern North Carolina township of Warsaw, General McNeill was commissioned a second lieutenant of Infantry through the ROTC program upon his completion of the requirements for a Bachelor of Science at North Carolina State University in 1968. Within his forty years of commissioned service, he had repetitive assignments with Airborne Infantry, Special Forces, mechanized infantry, and aviation units. He served as Assistant Division Commander, 2nd Infantry Division; Chief of Staff, XVIII Airborne Corps; Deputy Commanding General, I Corps; Commanding General, 82nd Airborne Division; Commanding General, XVIII Airborne Corps; Commander, Combined Joint Task Force 180 in Afghanistan; Deputy Commanding General/Chief of Staff, US Army Forces Command; Commanding General, US Army Forces Command; and Commander, International Security Assistance Force (NATO) in Afghanistan. Since his retirement from active service in July 2008, Dan and his wife Maureen have resided in Fayetteville, NC, where both have been continuously involved in serving with community and veteran focused organizations.


Rev. John R. Ragsdale, Guest Speaker

June 20, 2021

John Ragsdale grew up in Jamestown, North Carolina, and graduated from Woodberry Forest School and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a degree in Business Administration. He worked in banking and business for fifteen years, then, responding to the call to ministry, he attended Columbia Theological Seminary for his master’s and earned his doctorate from McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago. He served as pastor of several churches in northeast Florida and on the staff of the Presbytery of St. Augustine, retiring from full-time ministry in 2012. John and his wife, Sally, have two sons and live in Jacksonville, Florida.

Jim White.jpg

Rev. Jim White, Guest Speaker

June 27, 2021

Jim White is an honorably retired Presbyterian minister who served congregations in Greensboro, and Raleigh, NC, Donalds, and Lancaster, SC and Jackson, MS during his 37 years of pastoral ministry.


He and Ann have been married for almost 50 years and have two sons. They moved to Oak Island in 2007.


Jim is a trustee of the Dosher Memorial Hospital in Southport, is on the Board of the Foundation for Reformed Theology and is President of the Cape Fear Flyfishers. Ann is very active in the American Needlepoint Guild. Jim is a graduate of Davidson College and of Union Theological Seminary in Virginia.


Dr. Jerry Bron, Guest Speaker

July 11, 2021

Dr. Jerry D. Bron was born in the Netherlands in December of 1945.  He is the oldest of five children.  He immigrated to the U.S. in 1955 and grew up in Wilmington, North Carolina.  He played basketball at New Hanover High and UNC -Wilmington.   


Rev. Bron was graduated from Union Seminary in 1972 with a Master of Divinity and a Doctor of Ministry in 1983.  He studied under Rev. Dr. Ben Lacey Rose while at Union. 


Dr. Bron pastored three churches over the next 38 years:

  • Pink Hill Presbyterian Church, Pink Hill, NC from 1972-1978

  • First Presbyterian in Washington, NC from 1978 to 1993, and then as

  • Organizing pastor of the Southminster Church in Gastonia, NC. from 1993 to 2010.


Jerry is married to Linda McKoy, a 1969 graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Va.  She taught public school elementary Academically and Intellectually Gifted programs for 33 years.  Linda and Jerry are parents to Allison, Elizabeth, and Jakob.  Seven grandchildren call him “Opa.”


Dr. Bron retired in 2010 and now lives on Wrightsville Beach.  He still serves the church as a supply preacher and an occasional part-time interim.  Jerry serves as a coach to new church developments and to new church pastors. He enjoys his grandchildren, the salt life, being the handyman around the house, yard work, boating, photography, golf and the wind in what’s left of his hair while driving his 350-Z convertible.


Rev. Jay Sidebotham, III, Guest Speaker

July 25, 2021

Jay serves as Associate Rector at St. James’ Wilmington, and also as Director of RenewalWorks, a ministry of Forward Movement. RenewalWorks works with Episcopal congregations to build cultures of discipleship and to focus single-mindedly on spiritual growth. Ordained as an Episcopal priest in 1990, he has served churched in Washington, DC, Chicago, Manhattan, Rhode Island and North Carolina. The smartest thing he ever did was to marry Frances Murchison whose family has lived in Wilmington for many years. Jay and Frances moved here in 2014 and greatly enjoy this beautiful part of the world.

Rev. Paul Johansson

Rev. Paul Johansson, Guest Speaker

August 8, 2021

Paul is a Lutheran Pastor and the son-in-law of Van and Kay Weatherspoon, long-time homeowners on the island. Paul and his wife Martha are blessed with two sons, a daughter-in-law and two granddaughters. Paul grew up in East Africa as part of a missionary family and has served as a Pastor in Charlotte, NC, Hartford, CT, St. Cloud, MN and Elk River, MN.

The Very Rev. Milton C. Williams, Jr_

The Very Rev. Milton C. Williams, Jr., Guest Speaker

August 15, 2021

The Very Rev. Milton C. Williams, Jr. is the rector of St. Francis Episcopal Church, Greensboro, NC.  A native of Suffolk, Virginia, Father Williams earned a B.S. degree from Virginia State University in 1983, and his M.Div. from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in 1987 and a Diploma in Anglican Studies from Virginia Theological Seminary in 1996. He has served as a missionary in South Brazil and Fairbanks, Alaska. From 1988 to 1990 he taught at the University of South East Asia and Pui Ching Middle School in Macau, South East Asia.

Father Williams served as Associate Rector at the Historic Pohick Episcopal Church, one of the parishes of President George Washington, in Fairfax County, Virginia, from 1996 to 1999, and as Priest Associate for Pastoral Care and Outreach Ministries at Trinity Church, Wall Street, NY, from 1999 until 2006. From Trinity he headed south and served two parishes in Washington, D.C., St. Timothy's from 2006 to 2008 and as Rector of St. Monica and St. James, Capitol Hill, from 2008 to 2012. Following Washington, D.C., he served as Interim Rector at Church of the Ascension, Chicago and was later appointed by the Bishop of Chicago as the Interim Dean at St. James Cathedral, Chicago, from 2014 to 2015.

Currently, he serves on the board of directors of Hospice and Palliative Care of Greensboro, Canterbury School, Greensboro, Bel Canto Company-Choral Society, Greensboro, and as a mentor for African-American boys at Page High School, Greensboro. Father Williams is the Dean of the Convocation of Episcopal churches in Greensboro and serves on the Board of Trustees for the Diocese of North Carolina. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. Father Williams enjoys travel, the beach, hiking and music.

Steve Hein.jpg

Rev. Steve Hein, Guest Speaker

August 29, 2021

Steve, a retired Presbyterian minister, returns to lead this week's service. He most recently served at St. Andrew’s-Covenant Presbyterian Church in Wilmington.

Steve graduated from Pittsburgh theological seminary in 1975; served four churches in 40 years, last serving at St. Andrews Covenant Presbyterian Church for 18 years retiring at the end of 2015. He received an honorary D. D. From the University of Malawi, Africa in June 2014.H He recently started a foundation to fund schools, farming, wells and health ministries in Zomba Malawi. His wife is Katherine and they have 3 children and 9 grandchildren. He enjoys fishing, and travel (especially with family).

About Your Church

Our island church was founded in 1986 by residents in order to enjoy worship services during the summer while away from their home churches. Services are held each Sunday at 8:30 AM indoors at the Yacht Club.  There is a time after each service for fellowship and refreshments.  Services are non-denominational, brief and family-friendly. The dress is casual and both residents and visitors are welcome.

This summer, services will begin on the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend and will continue through the Sunday of Labor Day weekend.

Church Committee Members

Frannie DeWitt Browne • Jim Douglas • Jo Ann Hodges • Beth Howard

David Kellam • Yvonne Rayburn • Mike Smith • Jim Stone


Rev. Bob Haywood


Worship with us

Service: 8:30 - 9:15 am
Fellowship immediately following.


If you would like to send a prayer request for a loved one or notify the Church of the death of an immediate family member, please contact us.

Contact Us

Figure Eight Island Church
15 Bridge Road
Wilmington, NC

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