Join us as we welcome Rev. Robert (Rob) J. Marrow

published October 2, 2018

A Statement of My Faith Rev. Robert (Rob) J. Marrow

I belong to the triune God who is made known to us through the Holy Scriptures as the relationship between Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. While I, and all humans, were created in the image of this triune God, we are fallen creatures who rebel and sin against God. Yet, this God promises that nothing can separate me from His love. Since God first loved me, I am invited into the freedom of trusting the promises of this faithful and trustworthy triune God. In this God, I place my hope.
I believe in God the Father, who created all things. This God is of the same substance as the Son and the Holy Spirit. Bringing order out of chaos, God created time and space for His creation.

I believe in Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Son of God. Jesus came to testify of God’s love to the world, that those who believe in Him are not condemned but shall be with God forever. Jesus Christ was crucified and resurrected for the salvation of God’s creation. I believe that the risen Jesus is Lord of all creation. I receive faith as a gift of Christ’s salvation and live into His mercy and forgiveness. Even as I sinfully turn away from Him in my misdirected life, He wants
me to know that His grace is always enough. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Giver and Sustainer of all life. The Spirit continuously leads me into the life of God, transforming me, redirecting my love to God, equipping me for discernment of God’s call on my life. It is the Holy Spirit that enables the discernment of the
meaning that lies hidden in the heart of Holy Scripture. I believe that Holy Scripture is the unique and authoritative Word of God. These sacred writings, the Old and New Testament, inform us of God and the actions of God throughout time.

In the sacraments, the inward and spiritual grace of Christ is made visible through an outward and visible sign. I believe that through the sacrament of Baptism, we are welcomed into and united with the family of God. We are invited to grow deeper in our faith and devotion to Christ and His church. In the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, we are united with Christians from all times and places at the table. During this feast, which Christ Jesus instituted for us, we are nourished in faith as we remember the love and sacrifice made on our behalf through Christ.

I belong to the one, holy, Catholic Church, the Body of Christ, of which Christ is the head. The church is led by God’s Spirit to engage in God’s mission in the world. We are called to worship and love God, along with our neighbors and all of creation. I trust that God is very much so active in the world, reconciling all in His love. I believe in the fellowship of believers through worship, ministry, service and witness. In community with my brothers and sisters, I am called to be a good steward of everything that belongs to God, until I am with God in the new life that is to come in. As promised by God, my destiny is the resurrection of the dead and the new life to come.

A Statement of My Faith Rev. Robert (Rob) J. Marrow

As we began our search, we were thoughtful of the attributes we felt would meet the needs of our church. We wanted to find an experienced pastor who exhibited excellence in three critical areas: Preaching, Leadership, and Relatability. Reverend Marrow stood above our top candidates in all three categories.

We were impressed with his background and his written responses to several questions posed to six of our candidates. They were thoughtful and revealing of a pastor who is passionate about his faith and ministry. An hour long Skype video interview further solidified his position at the top of our list.

The PNC viewed a number of his sermons online, sent two of our members to visit his current church, and then welcomed the Marrows for a visit to Naples.
The PNC was able to get to know Rob and Beth and enjoyed worshiping with them as he preached at one of our local churches. Following their visit, the PNC easily and unanimously determined that Reverend Marrow was ideally suited for our church.

While this sounds like a relatively simple process, our first contact with Rob was in February and our final decision made at the end of July. In between, there were countless hours meeting, discussing, analyzing, reviewing information from over 70 pastors, watching sermons, checking references, etc. After all of that, and a great deal of prayer, we are confident that God has led us to the right pastor for Vanderbilt.

We are excited about our candidate and the future of our church. We respectfully encourage your support of our decision by welcoming Reverend Marrow to Vanderbilt Presbyterian Church.

Your Pastor Nominating Committee: Molly Godley, Tim Hall, Carolyn Magarro, Will McDonough, Twila Rowe, and Jerry Warnken

Biographical Sketch - Rev. Robert (Rob) J. Marrow

I n October, Beth and I will be married twenty-nine years. God blessed us with three daughters. Nicole, a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, now lives in Hyattsville, MD and works for the Department of Defense. Rachel is in her fourth year of the Physician’s Assistant program at St. Francis University, in Loretto, PA. Abigail is starting her second year of the Pharmacy program at the University of Pittsburgh. As a family, we are all excited about a move to Naples Florida. I am grateful to God that as a pastor, my schedule provided the flexibility to coach teams, be a band parent and volunteer in many other ways to be close with my children. Our children are excited about now having the option of spending the holidays, Spring breaks and vacations in “paradise” with their parents. I will admit, “The parents” are pretty excited about this fact too!

I am a native of Pittsburgh, PA and have served four congregations in Pennsylvania and Ohio over the past twenty years. With the exception of the three years I served the First Presbyterian Church of Bryan, OH, Pittsburgh has been my home. For the past eleven years, I have served as the pastor of the Cross Roads Presbyterian Church in Monroeville, PA.

While I have been a Presbyterian since birth, I have not always been a Pastor/Teaching Elder/ Minister. Following graduation from the University of Pittsburgh with a dual degree in Economics/ Business, I entered the Management Training Program with the Kaufmann’s division of the May Department Stores Company. I held various positions with Kaufmann’s in Pittsburgh for several years. As my wife is quick to remind me, she did not marry a pastor. The decision for me to enter seminary occurred following the birth of our first child. This decision to seek ordination was not made quickly or the result of a one-time event. It was a process involving years of discernment. However, one event did provide a bit of a focus for the change to occur. While serving on the Session of my home congregation, I chaired the annual stewardship campaign. Much time was spent meeting with people and addressing the congregation regarding the campaign. It was this activity that renewed my desire to pursue ordained ministry. After many conversations with my pastor, other church leaders, and especially my wife, the decision was made to leave retail and attend Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. We trusted that God would provide for our family during the three years of seminary and beyond, in much the same way that God brought us to that point in our lives.

I worked in the Office of Admissions during much of my time as a student at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. I remain active in my support of PTS, having served on the Board of Directors, the Alumni Association (President for a time), and various committees. I am also active in the life of Pittsburgh Presbytery. There, my past service includes Committee on Ministry, Crestfield Camp and Conference Center Executive Director Search Committee, Nominations Committee, and various other committees and commissions. Most recently, I served as a commissioner from Pittsburgh Presbytery for the 223rd General Assembly in St. Louis.

God has blessed our family in so many ways over these years and our trust is that God will continue to guide our path in the years to come. We are looking forward to becoming a part of the Vanderbilt Congregation.

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Wednesday Night at VPC

published November 28, 2018