In June, the Church of the Advent, the cathedral church of the Diocese of Alabama, hired a new Canon for Worship & Liturgy. Where this role is often filled by an Episcopal priest, the Church of the Advent has hired the Revd Zac Hicks, who is a Presbyterian minister. Most recently Canon Hicks was the Pastor of Worship for the Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Ft Lauderdale FL. Coral Ridge is the church founded by the rabidly homophobic, Dr D James Kennedy in 1960. Dr Kennedy served as its senior pastor until his death in 2007. Canon Hicks never served at Coral Ridge under Dr Kennedy.
Canon Hicks holds a bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from Biola Conservatory of Music and earned a MDiv from the Denver Seminary. He is an ordained minister in the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC). He is married to Abby and together they have four children, one girl and three boys. Canon Hicks is a pastor, musician and a writer. He recently completed a recording, Come and Make Us Free. He will soon have a book published, The Worship Pastor. Additionally he maintains his own blog, Zac Hicks // Worship. Church. Theology. Culture.
The Revd Hicks will maintain his clergy credential with the EPC, as he did will serving at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, which is part of the Presbyterian Church in America. He will be transferring his credential to the regional EPC body in the Birmingham area. He will be serving the Church of the Advent in what is termed an out-of-bounds capacity, which means he is serving a non-EPC congregation. But he will meet regularly with local EPC clergy for support and accountability.
Canon Hicks reports that he finds the Church of the Advent right in line with his own orthodox reformed beliefs. “Actually, becoming a part of this very Reformationally-conscious Episcopal parish makes several aspects of the theology I’ve always been convicted of feel more at home, rooted, and centered…Advent is a place that chooses to take its historic roots seriously, engaging (and believing in the contemporary relevance of) the streams of Luther and Calvin that flowed into the Church of England at the time of its formation. Advent believes in all the evangelical (in the best sense of the word) essentials that I do.”