Pittsburgh Theological Seminary welcomes the Rev. Dr. John A. Huffman to campus March 14-15 as the second annual Shoemaker Distinguished Preacher. Huffman will meet with students and preach in chapel Tues., March 15 at 11:30 a.m. The service is open to the public.
After 47 years of active church ministry, in 2009 Huffman was honorably retired by the Los Ranchos Presbytery and elected pastor emeritus by the congregation of St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Newport Beach, Calif. Huffman became the pastor of the 4000-member church in 1978. Early in his tenure, St. Andrew’s completed the mortgage on a $16 million building program, including a 1400-seat sanctuary, and during his time its annual giving exceeded $7 million, with more than $2 million of that to missions. Recently completed is a new $28 million building program that has added a new Family/Youth Center, a new children’s education building, and remodeled and refurbished the entire church campus.
Huffman now serves as minister-at-large. In this capacity he is serving as a trustee on the boards of Christianity Today International, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, World Vision U.S., and the Board of Pensions of the Presbyterian Church U.S.A.; guest preaching; being the chaplain of the Doctorate of Ministry program at Fuller Theological Seminary; spending a week each semester as preacher-in-residence at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary; carrying out his duties as minister-at-large for Cape Town 2010 (The 3rd Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization); and continuing his work in denominational and other para-church ministries.
During the past 40 years, several thousand of his printed sermons were mailed each week to all 50 states and more than 30 foreign countries. He has written nine books, the latest of which are The Family You Want and Forgive Us Our Prayers by Christian Focus Publications and the “Joshua” volume of The Communicator's Commentary published by Thomas Nelson Publishers. His media work includes extensive experience in radio and television with talk-show work on secular stations in Miami, Pittsburgh, and Los Angeles, as well as resourcing various networks, newspaper,s and magazines on contemporary matters of faith and life.
Among his many Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) ministries, he has twice been moderator of his presbytery, was the Presbyterian preacher on “The Protestant Radio Hour”, three times been a commissioner to General Assembly, and has served on four major task forces of the General Assembly. The most recent in his appointment was to serve on the nine-member Middle East Study Team.
Huffman has been involved in professional sports chaplaincies, doing chapel speaking, beginning with the Miami Dolphins (1969-l973), the visiting NFL teams while pastoring in Pittsburgh (1973-1978) and, from 1992-2002, was the backup chaplain, speaking several times each year on the PGA Senior Golf Tour.
He has traveled internationally on more than 80 trips, visiting 100-plus foreign countries on six continents, meeting with international leaders in business, journalism, education, religion, politics, and world relief. In l975 he consulted with Roman Catholic leaders at the Vatican; in 1977 studied missions and international relations in South Africa, Kenya, and Ethiopia; in 1983 ministered in Australia and the Solomon Islands with the Wycliffe Bible Translators; worked with Dr. Billy Graham in the Amsterdam International Conferences for Itinerant Evangelists (1983, 1986 and 2000); in 1989 did a preaching mission throughout Cuba; in 1993 traveled extensively through Vietnam; in 1993 spoke in Korea and attended an Asian Leadership Conference in Japan; and in 1995 traveled extensively through China, teaching in Nanchang and Beijing Seminaries as guest of the China Christian Council. Recently he has been actively involved in world/relief/justice efforts in Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East.
Huffman earned his bachelor’s from Wheaton College; completed special graduate studies at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University; earned his M.Div. from Princeton Theological Seminary; M.A. from the University of Tulsa; and Doctorate of Ministry from Princeton Theological Seminary. His post-doctoral studies have included a 1987 sabbatical semester in residence at Harvard University, and in 2000 he spent a sabbatical semester as a visiting scholar in residence at Princeton Theological Seminary and Princeton University. He is a recipient of several honorary doctorates.
Pittsburgh Theological Seminary is a graduate professional institution of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A). Founded in 1794, the Seminary is located in Pittsburgh, Pa. and approximately 320 students are enrolled yearly in the degree programs. The Seminary prepares leaders who proclaim with great joy God’s message of good news in both word and deed. PTS is rooted in the Reformed history of faithfulness to Scripture and commitment to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.