Association of Presbyterian Church Educators honors four

Awards presented during the national gathering held last week

by Mike Ferguson | Presbyterian News Service

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — During its national gathering last week, the Association of Presbyterian Church Educators honored four distinguished educators during a banquet held in their honor.

ENRICH (Educator of the Year) — Michael Waschevski

Michael Waschevski

Waschevski was called as an associate pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Fort Worth, Texas, in 1999 after having served churches in Michigan and Texas. He serves the Fort Worth church as associate pastor for Christian Formation and Pastoral Care, where he seeks to nurture the faith of members and visitors alike through inspiring worship, thoughtful Bible study and theological reflection, deep spiritual formation and compassionate congregational care.

As part of his ministry at FPC, Waschevski is a resource and leader in ministries of faith formation, especially worship and music and Christian education for adults. Within the Music and Arts ministry, he directs the two adult choirs, the Chancel and Fellowship choirs. These two choirs involve nearly 100 adults. He also works with and supervises several program staff in their many ministries.

His publishing credits include co-author of “Rhythms of Worship” and essayist in “The Theologically Reformed Heart.” He is the author of numerous articles for The Presbyterian OutlookPresbyterians Today, and Call to Worship. In addition, he has written curriculum for The Thoughtful Christian.

SUSTAIN (Life Achievement) — Priscilla Andre-Colton

Priscilla Andre-Colton

Andre-Colton began her career as a church educator before she even knew there was such a thing.  While still in junior high she prompted the youth group in her small rural church to volunteer to serve as Sunday school teachers for the summer to give the regular teachers a season off.

After she moved to Florida and got involved at Venice Presbyterian Church, her pastor encouraged her to check out the Presbyterian School of Christian Education.  There she reconnected with her passion and calling to Christian education.

She served churches in North Carolina, Florida, Pennsylvania and Virginia. She served on the Board of Trustees at Union Presbyterian Seminary, the PC(USA) Certification Committee, the Committee on Ministry of National Capital Presbytery, the Equipping Committee of Pittsburgh Presbytery, the Youth Council of Suwannee Presbytery and the Educator Group of National Capital Presbytery. Service to APCE includes East Region Representative, the Advocate Committee, Secretary, and Annual Event co-director.

CONNECT — Liz Hathaway

Liz Hathaway

Born into a half Presbyterian, half Catholic family, Liz Hathaway’s earliest church memory is being told that she had to wait an entire year before she would be old enough to sing in the children’s choir at the First Presbyterian Church of Verona, New Jersey. She was eventually baptized, confirmed, ordained as a deacon, and commissioned for many an adventure in this same congregation over a period of 23 years.

She returned after college to join the staff as the Christian Education facilitator in 2016. In 2017, she joined the staff of Newark Presbytery as the administrative assistant. In 2019, she completed her Certificate in Youth and Theology at Princeton Theological Seminary.

Prior to these roles, she worked in administration and program planning in the public, private, and non-profit sectors in New Jersey, the District of Columbia, and California. She is a graduate of The George Washington University and studied abroad at the School for International Training in Nairobi, Kenya.

She is a communicator, grant-writer, idea-sharer, and fun-chaser, and is passionate about youth ministry, international education, traveling, cycling, and her dog, Zoey.

EMPOWER — Amy Parker

Amy Parker

Parker grew up in West Texas where her family was at First Presbyterian Church in Fort Stockton every time the doors opened. She credits her faith development to that small, loving congregation. The congregation introduced her to Mo Ranch, Presbyterian Youth Triennium, and General Assembly, and ordained Amy as a ruling elder at 16. She served on the session, the Christian Education Committee, and the Tres Rios Presbytery Youth Committee.

She was one of Austin College’s first five ACtivators, and through it, felt called to ministry. During a college summer she served in Southeast Alaska as a PC(USA) mission volunteer.  In 2000 she joined the staff at First Presbyterian Church of Fort Worth, Texas, as the director of Children’s Ministries and Outreach. In 2012 Amy’s ministry grew to oversee the congregation’s early childhood program which included the supervision and oversight of an accredited full-time care program for 136 children.

At the congregational level she empowered the move to innovative teaching and the required renovation of the children’s education wing. Her one of a kind, original Vacation Church School and Advent programs have inspired hundreds of volunteers and thousands of kids. Her week-long summer exposure to urban ministry, known as Mission on the Move, is innovative and impactful.

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