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Alum Andrew Black is new director of constitutional services for PC(USA) General Assembly

Aug 19, 2011
“Brings a vision of the church God is calling us to be”

Sharon Youngs, Office of General Assembly
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

Andrew Black, a Presbyterian teaching elder and member of Santa Fe Presbytery, has accepted the call to become the next director of constitutional services for the Office of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) denomination. In his new position, Black will facilitate developments of the Book of Order that serve the church’s goals and facilitate vital, alive Presbyterian congregations for a multicultural world of the 21st century. He will work with mid councils and other PC(USA) agencies to develop resources and opportunities for equipping and training a new generation of leadership for the Presbyterian denomination, based in Louisville, Ky.

In addition, Black’s responsibilities will include overseeing the process of providing advisory opinions of interpretation of the Constitution in response to inquiries that are addressed to the Stated Clerk of the General Assembly. He will respond to polity inquiries, and is considered a deputy of the Stated Clerk with regard to all matters of constitutional interpretation and judicial processes.

“Andrew brings a vision of the church God is calling us to be,” said Gradye Parsons, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly. “His desire to engage the church at all levels in a process of discernment and prayer about new ways of doing ministry and mission will be timely and helpful to the church, given the recent adoption of a new Form of Government.”

Black holds a B.A. degree in political science and religious studies from Presbyterian-related Eckerd College, a Master of Divinity degree from Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, and the Juris Doctor degree from the University of Louisville-Brandeis School of Law.

He will leave his current work as field representative for United States Senator Jeff Bingaman in Santa Fe, N.M., to take this new position. He has also served as associate chaplain and associate director of religious life at Eckerd College, as well as a number of positions in the church and legal fields. He served in Cape Town, South Africa, as a Truth, Restorative Justice and Reconciliation Fellow for the Amy Biehl Foundation Trust, and as mentor and tutor in inner-city public schools in St. Petersburg, Fla., where he was awarded the Pinellas County Schools Volunteer of the Year. Black has published a number of articles, including “Despair and Hope: the Long Hard Road to Reconciliation” (The Mosaic Magazine, 2006).

Black shared his hopes for this new call by saying, “Through faithful imagination, prophetic vision, and hard-nose realism, my hope is that [the Department of Constitutional Services] can be a bridge between the fields of law and ministry, between what is professed and what is practiced, and between where we are now and where God is calling us to be.”

He continued, “I look forward to working hard, serving with intelligence and imagination and being a faithful servant journeying with and calling the church to a life of faith, hope, love, justice, and reconciliation.

Black will begin his work later this fall.

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