The Words of the Compton Family
Andrew Compton was born in Palo Alto, California in 1953. He moved to Berkeley. California for his senior year of high school and became an atheist, working actively with the political left movement. He was introduced to the Unification Church, at the time the "Unified Family," on his high school campus in Berkeley in 1971, and discovered God and True Parents as the fulfillment of the Second Coming of Christ.
In 1972, Andrew dropped out of University of California Berkeley and drove across the United States to meet True Parents in New York. In the following years, he was the state leader in Arizona, West Virginia and Minnesota and was Blessed in marriage to Lydia Lee Gross in 1982 at Madison Square Garden. He was then sent to Ohio and later to New York to teach Divine Principle workshops and has been in the New York area since 1983, working as a lecturer and a witnessing team leader at the Learning Center in Manhattan.
Andrew became the pastor of the Manhattan Unification Church in 2000 and in 2003 was asked to become the pastor of the WestRock Unification Church community, which includes Westchester and Rockland counties in New York. He has four children, two sons and two daughters.
Question: What are your thoughts on the District Pastor's Inauguration Ceremony?
On Tuesday, November 27th, I participated in the Inauguration / foot washing ceremony for the District Pastors, guided by Reverend Hyung Jin Moon. I never had such an experience before. We first read a pledge of commitment, which made me keenly aware of the seriousness of the responsibility I was taking on and its significance. Then I had my first experience of having my feet washed by another person and then of washing a local church member's feet. During the ceremony, Reverend Hyung Jin Moon read Jesus' words when he washed his disciples' feet. For me, that was the most powerful element. It made me realize the degree to which Jesus humbled himself; also it made me think of Father Moon washing the undergarments of a woman. It reminded me of our true position before God and each other -- that we are here to love and serve one another -- and becoming a District Pastor is an opportunity to serve more than I have ever served before. I certainly won't forget this experience.
Question: What story does your family always tell about you?
When I was a toddler, one time my parents went to a party and I wandered off and fell into a swimming pool. When my parents were desperately trying to find me, someone happened to notice me lying on the bottom of the pool.
Question: If you had a million dollars, what would you do?
I would put it towards building a church or gym on the Belvedere property so our youth would have a place to do things and our members would have a house of worship.
Question: If you could travel back in time, who would you meet and why?
I would like to meet George Washington. Father Moon. in one interview, spoke of him as the greatest American leader.
Question: If you didn't have to sleep, what would you do during the time you would normally spend sleeping?
When it is quiet and nothing is bothering me, that's the time I like to pray, read, and do creative things. I would like to write music and develop better ways to present the Divine Principle. I would especially like to develop an animated series that presents the Divine Principle with story and a bit of humor.
Question: If you could be a superhero, which superhero would you be? How would you use those powers?
When I was a kid, I used to like Superman. although I thought it was a bit unfair that he had so many powers. The thing I would most want to do is to become a world-famous person who could be a great John the Baptist figure to our True Parents. I have always felt sorry that no internationally famous person has yet been able to stand up for True Parents.
Question: Do you have any phobias? If so, what are they?
I have always been very shy, and I used to stutter heavily as a kid. I guess that means I have a phobia, to some degree, of people. And it gives me the eebeejeebees to think of biting down with my teeth on an extra dry towel. Is that weird or what?
Question: What is an exotic dish that you've never eaten but would like to?
When I was mountain climbing in the Sierra Nevada of California, I killed a rattle snake, cooked it and ate it. It was good, but I think I would like to try to eat snake that is prepared in a restaurant.