Participating in Theological Praxis
Practicing theological reflection and engagement as part of
one's sense of ministerial identity.
I consider my theological education as a formative and ongoing aspect of my ministry. I presently am working towards a Doctorate in Ministry at the Boston University School of Theology focused on Religious Leadership. I am thankful for the important time and resources Pastors in the UCC are offered for continuing education.
Previously I earned a Graduate Certificate from Claremont School of Theology for study of Religion, Activism, and Social Justice and how these efforts are our theology practiced and lived out in the public space beyond the walls of our churches. My social justice work is rooted in theological practice and the liberating love of God that we are all called to be a part of.
I have also participated in many intensive programs for theological study and continuing education. In 2013, I participated in the Fund for Theological Education's 2013 annual forum for young adults called to theological practice and ministry leadership in New York.
Claremont School of Theology where I studied Religion, Activism, and Social Justice
Receiving the witness and teachings of a former colleague of Bishop Oscar Romero at a religious forum for indigenous rights in Hawaii
Integrating theological reflection in teaching, preaching, and ecclesial and community leadership.
My call is both ecumenical and evangelical. Ecumenical in that I believe in our purpose as the UCC to be the heart of a movement that unites the Chrisitan faith around our shared identity and to refocus Christendom on the pursuit of justice
(Articulating a theology and practice of ministry consistent with the UCC Manual on Ministry).
Evangelical in that I am so inspired by our embracing and loving theology that I want to share it with the world. The unconditional love of God that I experience in my life is what all people need to experience and I am delightedly restless in knowing that God seeks to put me to work inviting and including so many who are not connected with the UCC. Perhaps along the way I can help to live out the true meaning of evangelical in this era in which it has been comandeered and misused.
Friends I made at the national gathering for United Methodist college students
Friends I made at a Fund for Theological Education program at the Stony Point Retreat Center in New York
In ministry since he was a young teenager, Andrew has a clear understanding of and strong commitment to fulfilling God's purpose in his life. With that wisdom is coupled an excellent skillset to mentor and equip others as they, too, discern and follow God's purpose for their lives.
Rev. Mary Scifres
Author and Church Consultant
Demonstrating an appreciation for and participation in the ecumenical and interfaith partnerships of the United Church of Christ.
ASU Council of Religious Advisors
When I led the UCC@ASU campus ministry, I was an active member of the ecumenical Council on Religious Advisors for the University. I worked with this body and the university to hold all religious entities on campus to the same standard of inclusivity as they do secular student organizations (Embodying the UCC Ministerial Code).
Member of the Board of Directors of the General Board of Church and Society
From 2012-2016, I was a member of the Board of Directors for the United Methodist General Board of Church and Society in Washington, D.C. This incredible honor and opportunity overlapped with my college and graduate school years and gave me endless opportunities for learning and formation In this capacity I had the honor of shaping the denomination's stances on social justice issues and served in numerous advocacy capacities across the church and the nation.
Advocacy at the United Nations, World Council of Churches, & Capitol Hill
As a part of my leadership through the General Board of Church and Society, I have been a part of the United Nations work on indigenous rights and the World Council of Churches work on climate justice.
Attending the United Nations General Assembly during the World Conference on Indigenous Persons
World Council of Churches interfaith climate commitment signing and dinner at Union Theological Seminary in New York City
The United States Capitol around which I have engaged in meetings with Congressional Offices about policies to expand access to healthcare for Americans and to increase our aid abroad for the wellbeing of all
The view from my favorite corner of the United Methodist Building on Capitol Hill where my work in Washington, D.C. was based-this room is where Martin Luther King, Jr. planned the march on Washington
Experiencing and appreciating a variety of theological perspectives.
Since I have been so involved with ecumenical work and in ministry through several denominations I value theological diversity.
So much of my ministry is rooted in creating opportunities for each person to develop their own personal theological thoughts and interpretations. It is a great joy to be a part of their journeys and to be a part of a denomination that is here to create relationships rooted in the spirit that transcend our differences. I also believe ecumenism is an important role of my ministry because the larger faith community needs to to be challenged as it is often so lost in narrow dogmatic beliefs, which diminishes the spiritual lives of so many in our world.
As a minister, Andrew has been compassionate and adaptable. Considering that our branch of UCC started during a global pandemic and amidst much unrest, Andrew has helped to create a safe space that is flexible and stress free for students. We greatly appreciate his eagerness to reach out to marginalized communities and openness to students of all religious backgrounds. As a student leader, I can see that this low stress and open discussion based environment has been very important to our small community's health as well as my own.