Schramm takes on mantle of Presbyterian Mission Agency Board leadership

July 10, 2012

outgoing chair of PMA Board places stole on incoming chair of PMA Board

Michael Kruse, outgoing PMA Board chair (at right), passes the stole to new chair, Matthew Schramm. —Photo by Michael Whitman.


The Rev. Matthew Schramm, senior pastor of Westminster Presbyterian Church in Bay City, Mich., is the new chair of the Presbyterian Mission Agency Board (formerly General Assembly Mission Council).

During a brief ceremony at the conclusion of the final report (July 7) of the 220th General Assembly’s Mission Coordination Committee, Schramm received the stole from the outgoing Presbyterian Mission Agency (PMA) Board chair, Michael W. Kruse.

Kruse, a ruling elder from Kansas City, Mo., began his remarks by thanking his wife, Melissa, PMA Board Vice Chair Carolyn McLarnan, and PMA Executive Director Linda Valentine, for their support and counsel.

“We have a truly remarkable executive director and staff at the PMA,” Kruse said. “When I began my service eight years ago, I had deep concerns. The transformation that is under way is beyond anything I might have imagined. Truly God called the right person for the right time when Linda Valentine was elected executive director.”

In introducing Schramm and the PMA Board’s incoming vice chair, Arthur Canada, to the Assembly, Kruse emphasized one of the Assembly’s most prevalent concerns.

“There is something I need to tell you about Matt,” said Kruse. “At 32 years old, we believe that Matt will be the first young adult chair of the Presbyterian Mission Agency Board. And let me add that, by my calculation, two of our four programmatic chairs are also young adults.”

Both Schramm and Canada—a teaching elder from Charlotte, N.C.—were elected at the May meeting of the PMA Board.

Schramm prefaced his words of gratitude by acknowledging another former PMA Board chair and “a true saint of the church,” Carol Adcock, along with Kruse, whom he commended for his “passion for strategic focus and alignment, as well as thoughtfulness in every sense of the word.”

“It is my pleasure and honor to try to carry on that legacy, however impossible it may be, and to step into their role as chair of the Presbyterian Mission Agency Board,” said Schramm. “I look forward to serving with Art Canada, not only as successors to such wonderful leaders, but as partners, working alongside Linda Valentine and the staff of the Presbyterian Mission Agency.”

Schramm added, “We are excited about Presbyterian Mission and are thrilled to partner with you as we inspire, equip, and connect Presbyterians to serve Christ in the world.”

  1. Matt is our pastor at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Bay City, Michigan. We have been aware of Matt's gifts since he took our call. Along with his fine family, he has set a course of introspection and challenge that has served us well, and his obvious talents for church leadership will only serve to make everyone he touches, stronger in our Lord. Peace. Christopher C. Elzinga Elder

    by Christopher Elzinga

    July 17, 2012

  2. Matt, Congratulations on your outstanding achievement. I kno your Grand Ma and your Grand Dad Callahan are smiling down from Heaven with pride and joy. I am honored to share in your great news. God bess you and I know he does. GA Jeanette I will be in Troy Aug 14-19 teaching.

    by Jeanette McDanil

    July 16, 2012

  3. I am so honored to know Matt and to serve the church with him. He will be a great asset to the leadership of the Presbyterian Mission Agency and we are blessed to have him serve the church in this way. Blessings to my good friend and colleague! Rhonda Myers

    by Rhonda Myers

    July 14, 2012

  4. Congratulations and many blessings as you tackle this important work!

    by Jean Johnston

    July 14, 2012

  5. Matt I just want you to know how proud I am to say that I know someone who merits with position within our church. God bless you. Duncan

    by Duncan Caldwell

    July 12, 2012

  6. I am so proud of Matt, and so confident that he will provide exceptional and inspiring lewadership to the Presbyterian Mission Agency. -Bill Russell

    by William R Russell

    July 10, 2012

  7. I am so proud of Matt, and have every confidence that he will provide outstanding and inspiring leadership. One caveat: Matt is not - and never was - a "young" adult! He has always been "old" for his years - and wise and capable and committed far beyond his age. God bless him! -Bill Russell

    by William R Russell

    July 10, 2012