- Contributed by Douglas Burton (UTS '82) Douglas Burton (UTS '82)
Rev. Andrew Compton (UTS’02), pastor of the WestRock Family Church in Tarrytown, N.Y., is packing his bags for a permanent move to Las Vegas, UTS.edu has learned.
“Dr. Michael Balcomb recently gave me a change of mission,” says Compton, who will take on the role of Divine Principle lecturer at the International Peace Education Center (IPEC) under Thomas Hwang. In addition, he will be supporting Rev. Ken Doo (UTS’98), the pastor of the Las Vegas community.
Having joined the Unified Family in Berkeley, CA in 1971, Compton has served in various ministry positions in the Unification Church for 44 years. He gained his Bachelor of Arts degree through the New York State Regents’ program in 1995 and entered part-time study at the Unification Theological Seminary (UTS) in 1996, graduating in 2002.
“My UTS degree program really helped me in lecturing, teaching and giving sermons. It challenged me to organize long-term projects,” he says of the years he spent shuttling between Barrytown, N.Y. and his witnessing team at 4 W. 43rd St. in New York City. “There were several times that I thought I would give up trying to get the UTS degree, but I decided to stay at it, partly because I wanted to fulfill True Father’s dream, which is that all the religions of the world would work together because we are all God’s children,” he explained in a telephone interview.
“My course on world religions helped me to talk to a variety of clergy and religious leaders. Another course on world affairs, taught by Dr. Thomas Ward (UTS’81), was fascinating,” he adds.
Andrew Ross Compton was born in Palo Alto, California on February 2, 1953. He joined the Unification Family in Berkeley, California in 1971.
From 1971 to 1983, Compton pioneered a church center in Richmond, VA, was the church leader in Arizona, and then West Virginia, and finally after a period of training on a fundraising team, he became the church leader in Minnesota.
From 1983 to 2000, Rev. Compton was in charge of Divine Principle education in New York City and became the leader of a New York City witnessing team. From 2000 to 2002 he became pastor of the Unification Church of Manhattan, and served as the vice-regional leader.
In 2002 he graduated from UTS with a Master in Religious Education. In 2003 he became the pastor of the Unification Church in Tarrytown (the West Rock Family Church). In 2012 he also took on the mission of New York District pastor.
Compton received the Blessing of Marriage with Lydia Gross from Richmond, Indiana, in 1982. They have four grown children.