Reverend Jimmy J. Norred

Published 10:32 am Tuesday, August 24, 2021

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The Reverend Jimmy J. Norred passed away Thursday, August 19, 2021 at Moses Cone Hospital after a brief illness.

A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, August 28 at the Davidson Funeral Home Chapel, by the Reverends Tom Warren, Dr. Ken Clapp, Misty York, and Aaron Long and livestreamed at Burial will follow at Pauls Chapel Church Cemetery.

Rev. Norred was born December 30, 1939 in LaGrange, Georgia to James Larkin Norred and Sarah Edna Bales Norred. Jimmy graduated from Troup County High School in 1958 and LaGrange College in 1962. He received his Bachelor of Divinity degree from Duke Divinity School in 1967. He was awarded the Master of Divinity degree from Duke in 1971. On December 15, 1961, he married his highschool sweetheart, Nora Jean Hawkins Norred.

Jimmy was called by God to the Christian ministry at a young age of 17. He was a pastor for 55 years at the following churches: Antioch Christian Church, UCC in Roanoke, Alabama; Forest Home Christian Church in Rock Mills, Alabama (1962-1963); Ramseur Christian Church, UCC in Ramseur, North Carolina (1963-1964); First United Church of Christ, in Randleman, North Carolina (1964-1967); Ramseur Union Grove Parish which was composed of First United Church of Christ, Ramseur, North Carolina and Union Grove Christian UCC, Asheboro (1967-1972); Union Congregational Church UCC, in Avon Park, Florida (1972-1974); Paul’s Chapel UCC in Lexington, North Carolina (1974-1999); St John’s UCC in Kannapolis, North Carolina (1999-2005). Heserved as interim minister at New Gilead UCC in Concord, North Carolina and Mt. Tabor UCC, Lexington, North Carolina and interim and then pastor at New Jerusalem UCC, Lexington, North Carolina for another six years until he retired in 2016. On August 26, 2007, Jimmy was installed as Pastor Emeritus of Paul’s Chapel UCC, Lexington, North Carolina.

In his ministry, Jimmy received into membership over 600 new members, performed over 270 weddings, including those of his children, and performed over 200 funerals. Jimmy also believed in being a servant leader in the community. He was active in Prison Chaplaincy, Volunteer Fire Department, Lions Club, Crisis Ministry and many others. He served as a hospital chaplain at Lexington Memorial Hospital. He was intricately involved in the foundation and opening of Piedmont UCC Retirement Homes, now Piedmont Crossing. During his entire ministry, Jimmy was dedicated to the Southern Conference, specifically the Western North Carolina Association and served on various committees, including terms on the Board of Directors of the Southern Conference, and chair of both the Evangelism and Stewardship committees.

Jimmy was dedicated to creating opportunities for children and youth and ensured that his churches not only met the needs of the members but also reached the entire community through boy scouts, booster clubs, ball teams, retreats, camps and community events like Spook Trail and Live Nativity Drama. Even though he worked hard, Jimmy still had fun. He enjoyed many deep sea fishing trips to the coast with the guys, boating at High Rock Lake (including pulling kids and grandkids on skis and tubes) and rafting on the ocean waves. He also felt it was important to create many memories with family whether on vacation or visiting over Nora’s delicious cooking. 

In 2016, Jimmy and Nora moved to Greensboro, North Carolina to be closer to their daughter and became active members of Peace United Church of Christ.

Jimmy was predeceased by his parents; three sisters, Estelle Norred Swann, Lois Norred Eunice, and Evelyn Norred Rutland; five brother-in-laws, Willie Williams, Paul Swann, Carlos Eunice, Leonard Rutland and Walter McIntyre and a sister-in-law, Annette McCann Hawkins.

He is survived by his loving wife of almost 60 years, Nora Hawkins Norred; his son, Joseph Gregory Norred and wife Sara of Kaukauna, Wisconsin; his daughter Jennifer Norred Fountain and husband Rob of Greensboro, North Carolina; four grandchildren, Avery Fountain, Jack Fountain, Aubrey Norred and Arley Norred; one sister, Barbara Norred McIntyre and one brother-in-law, Robert Lavelle Hawkins, both of LaGrange, Georgia and many nephews, nieces, grand nephews and grand nieces.

In lieu of flowers, memorials should be made to Peace United Church of Christ, 2714 W. Market St, Greensboro North Carolina 27403, Pauls Chapel Church, 2791 W. Center St Ext, Lexington North Carolina 27295, Heifer Project or Crop Walk.

Online condolences may be made at