New Presbyterian Moderator named
The next Moderator of the Presbyterian Church will be the Rev Roy Patton.
The 58-year-old was nominated by eight out of 19 Presbyteries that met this evening throughout Ireland to vote for a new figurehead.
He is minister of Ballygilbert Presbyterian Church near Bangor in Co Down and will succeed Dr Ivan Patterson as Moderator on May 28.
Mr Patton, who has been minister of Ballygilbert for the last 17 years, said: "I am humbled by my nomination as Moderator and am very aware of my own shortcomings and the responsibility of the office.
"However I know God will give me the strength to fulfil the task to which he has called me and I have the confidence of the support of my wife and the prayers of my congregation and wider church family and friends."
Born in Monaghan, Mr Patton studied at Trinity College, Dublin, as well as New College in Edinburgh, before he completed his training for the Presbyterian ministry at Union Theological College in Belfast in 1980.