Edward M. Carney will retire July 1 as senior pastor of Riverland Hills Baptist Church in Irmo after 26 years of service.
During his tenure, Riverland Hills grew from a small community church located on St. Andrews Road to a larger campus on 62 acres near Harbison Boulevard. Today, the church offers both contemporary and traditional worship styles in four separate Sunday worship services. Membership has grown to more than 4,800 members, with an average Sunday morning attendance of nearly 2,000.
Carney, a native of Cayce, earned an associate degree from Anderson University, a bachelor of science from Mars Hill College, a master of divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and a doctorate in ministry from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.
Before coming to Riverland Hills, he served Second Baptist Church of Manning, First Baptist Church of Andrews, Highland Park Baptist Church in Hanahan, and Ashley River Baptist Church in Charleston.
He has served as chairman of the Executive Board of the South Carolina Baptist Convention. He also served as a chaplain in the United States Naval Reserve, rising to the rank of lieutenant commander. Carney and his wife, Susan, have two daughters — Erin (husband, Jay) and Brett (husband, Kerry) — and five grandchildren.
A retirement celebration for the Carneys will be held at the church at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 25.