Stephen Butler Murray becomes ICCC executive minister

June 30, 2016

Stephen Butler Murray became the executive minister of the International Council of Community Churches, an association of Protestant congregations that is one of the smallest denominations in the National Council of Churches. 

“Stephen is committed, energetic, in­telligent, and devoted to the church of Jesus Christ in its many and varied expressions,” said Richard O. Griffith, president of the ICCC board of directors. “We will be blessed by all he brings to the council and its ecumenical witness of unity without uniformity.”

Murray will continue as president of Ecumenical Theological Seminary in Detroit, where he is also professor of systematic theology and preaching.

Ordained by the American Baptist Churches USA, he has served as a pastor of Baptist, Lutheran, Presbyterian, Unitarian-Universalist, and United Church of Christ congregations. He has also taught at Auburn Theological Seminary and Union Theological Seminary, from which he earned his Ph.D. in systematic theology.

Murray is the author of Reclaiming Divine Wrath: A History of a Christian Doctrine and Its Interpretation.

Murray succeeds Donald H. Ashmall, who has served as council minister since 2011.

Michael Livingston, a former executive of the ICCC, wrote that the association was formed in 1950 from “the merger of two formerly segregated councils, one black and one white.” He described the racially diverse body as a “fellowship of ecumenically minded, freedom-loving churches cooperating in fulfilling the mission of the church in the world.”

The ICCC, which is headquartered in Frankfort, Illinois, has member churches in Africa and Europe, as well as in Canada and the United States.

This report contains material from an additional source.