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Pastor Ben Shaeffer
Pastor Ben Shaeffer and Wife Kayce

Meet Pastor Ben & Kayce

Pastor Ben was a 1979 graduate of BGSU with a B.S. in Business Administration, and a Master's in Organizational Development in 1997. God called Ben to be a local pastor while working for AT&T as a Sales Manager. He retired from AT&T in 2010 after 25 years of service and was a bi-vocational pastor for 6 years before going into full-time ministry.  


He graduated with a Master of Divinity from Methodist Theological School of Ohio in 2015. He was ordained an Elder in the West Ohio Conference in 2017. Ben retired from the West Ohio Conference and moved to Asheville, North Carolina in 2020 with his wife Kayce. 


Ben has been the pastor at Elizabeth Chapel United Methodist Church since July of 2021.  


Ben and Kayce are a ministry team. Kayce has over 40 years of experience in Children’s ministry. They enjoy hiking, traveling, and spending time with family and friends. 

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About Our Chapel

Elizabeth Chapel United Methodist Church welcomes all individuals seeking God’s love, and we keep our doors open to every soul seeking to welcome Jesus into their hearts. We invite you to open your heart and allow His grace to penetrate into your soul. Our church was organized in 1896 and built in 1963 in Waynesville, North Carolina. We are a place of acceptance, peace, and joy to all who are moved to join us. Our church family is richly diverse, with people of different ages and backgrounds coming together to worship and serve together. Get in touch to find out more or join us for a service.

1896 - Present

In 1896 a Sunday school was organized in Ratcliffe Cove with meetings held in a schoolhouse. Soon Mr. Asbury Ratcliffe and Miss Elizabeth Turner began work to establish a Methodist Church in the community. Mr. Ratcliffe’s mother, Mrs. Margaret Ratcliffe, gave land on which to build the church. Miss Turner, along with other ladies, asked for donations in nearby towns and received generous contributions. Mr. John Boone, a lumberman at the time, gave the lumber. Mr. Will Ratcliffe, father of Lula Ratcliffe (Medford) hauled the first load of lumber from the sawmill with the help of Ratcliffe Medford, who was only 14 years old at the time.

The people worked faithfully, and the one room church was completed for worship service in the fall of 1897 with a membership of about 25. Miss Turner had worked hard and faithfully to achieve her goal, so the members decided to name the church Elizabeth Chapel in her honor. At conference in 1898 Elizabeth Chapel was put on the Clyde circuit and had various pastors to serve over the years with many changes made.


In the early 1950s, with Rev. Grady Barringer as pastor, the church members began thinking of building a new church. The church conference voted to start construction with one-half the cost which had been raised. The Building Fund was started in 1954. The Women’s Society of Christian Service (WSCS-now UWF) made the first donations to the fund and served many meals to help raise the money.  


In 1961, Rev. Bob Russell, the minister at the time, worked diligently with the congregation to get the new building started. In 1962 plans were put in place to build the new church. The building committee consisted of Hugh Ratcliffe, Paul Bryson, J.N .Hyatt, Glen Hipps, Mark Galloway, D.B. Stone Rufus Ratcliff, Herb Morgan  and Jack Bass.  


The new brick structure was completed, and the first worship service was held in the sanctuary on June 15, 1963. The formal opening, led by Rev. Mark Tuttle, D.S., was held September 15, 1963. Through many prayers and much hard work, the members of Elizabeth Chapel had achieved the beautiful building they worship in today.

Let’s Worship  Together

98 Elizabeth Chapel Rd

Waynesville, NC 28786

Tel: (828) 452-4256

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