For Immediate Release
Contact: Vicki Biggs, 314-996-1236, 314-556-3829 (cell), @theLCMS
ST. LOUIS, November 13, 2013—The Rev. Roosevelt Gray Jr. has accepted a call to serve as director of LCMS Black Ministry, the long-established Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) ministry serving predominantly black communities and ministering to African immigrants. His call was effective Nov. 1.
In this role, Gray will provide leadership and direction for LCMS districts, congregations, schools and related organizations as they minister to minority groups in their communities across the country. Also, Gray will serve as a liaison to the churchwide Black Clergy Caucus and oversee the development of resources to support LCMS Black Ministry throughout the Synod.
“Black Ministry in the LCMS began in 1877, only 30 years after the Synod was formed,” said the Rev. Bart Day, executive director of the LCMS Office of National Mission. “Though the way this ministry operates over the decades has changed, the need for it has not. In Rev. Gray, we have a tremendous leader poised to move the ministry forward as we share Gospel of Jesus Christ amid a changing America.”
Gray is filling a position that has been open since 2010, when the LCMS Board for Black Ministry Services was disbanded following the restructure mandated by the Synod in convention. Most recently, the Rev. Dr. Frazier Odom served the ministry as interim director. The director of LCMS Black Ministry position is in line with the Synod’s restructure and is covered in the Synod’s budget.
Prior to joining the staff of the LCMS International Center in St. Louis, Gray served as assistant to the President for Missions/Evangelism in the LCMS Michigan District, a call he accepted in 2001. He served as pastor of Faith Lutheran Church and Lutheran City Ministries in Detroit, Mich.., from 1997 to 2001; director of admissions, recruitment and vicarage at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind., from 1994 to 1997; and as pastor at Mt. Calvary Lutheran Church, Houston, from 1988 to 1994.
Gray graduated in 1988 with a Master of Divinity from Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind., and in 1977 with a bachelor’s degree in Printing Production and Management from Alabama A&M University, Huntsville, Ala.
About The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod is a biblical, confessional, witness-oriented Christian denomination with 2.3 million members – 600,000 households – in 6,200 congregations. Through acts of witness and mercy, the church carries out its mission worldwide to make known the love of Jesus Christ. Learn more at www.lcms.org.