The Rev. Edwina Landry has received a warm welcome as the new pastor at the First Presbyterian Church, 108 W. Court St.
“I was excited to accept the call to First Presbyterian because of the welcoming spirit of the congregation,” said Landry, who will give her fourth service at the landmark Rome church on Sunday.
“The people here truly model the love of Christ. No matter who you are, what your background is, or what your differences might be, they embrace people with a genuine authenticity. In fact, my own background is different, and they welcomed me with open arms,” the new pastor said.
Landry is an ordained Evangelical Lutheran Church in America pastor and is able to serve the Presbyterian Church through the Formula of Agreement Between the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), the Presbyterian Church (USA), the Reformed Church in America, and the United Church of Christ.
This agreement, established in 1997, declares that in light of identified doctrinal consensus, desiring to bear visible witness to the unity of the Church, and hearing the call to engage together in God’s mission they are in full communion with one another based on a common calling.
Landry said the First Presbyterian congregation’s passion for mission, outreach, and social justice match her own passions.
“To love as Christ loves means to seek justice for all people. Love and justice go hand in hand,” Landry said, adding that initiatives such as the PCUSA’s Mathew 25 initiative and the Utica Presbytery’s brand new Center for Jubilee Practice are part of this social justice mission.
“Our building is more than just a place of worship; it’s a mission station,” said Landry.
“People are experiencing a lot of stress these days, and at First Presbyterian they can find a place of rest, rejuvenation, and joy,” the new local pastor said.
“I’m so excited to be here with a group of people who truly care for one another, their community, and the world,” she added. “Come check out First Presbyterian Church and see what I mean!”
A native of New England, Landry grew up in Connecticut and also lived in New Hampshire. She received a bachelor’s degree in writing and literature from Granite State College in New Hampshire, and graduated with a master of divinity degree from the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg, now known as United Lutheran Seminary.
She also received a certificate in Ecumenism from the Washington Consortium.
Prior to seminary she worked in college administration, and also did free-lance writing.
Landry has served congregations in North Dakota, Pennsylvania, and most recently Albany before to coming to Rome.
She has two grown daughters, and lives in Rome with her cat Boo.