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Last Updated: Tuesday, 25 October 2005, 13:10 GMT 14:10 UK
Church announces next moderator
Reverend Alan McDonald
Mr McDonald was convener of the Church and Nation Committee
The Reverend Alan McDonald has been named as the next moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.

Mr McDonald, 54, is the minister of the Fife parishes of Cameron and St Leonards, in St Andrews.

He was convener of the Kirk's influential Church and Nation Committee during the foot-and-mouth crisis and conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

He succeeds current incumbent, the Reverend David Lacy, in May.

The Glasgow-born moderator-designate, who is married and has two grown-up children, was educated at Glasgow Academy.

He went on to study law at Strathclyde University and trained as a legal apprentice before working as a solicitor in Edinburgh.

Master degree

Mr McDonald's call to the ministry saw him returning to university to study for a divinity degree at New College.

He has been inspired by the writings of Martin Luther King and during a year spent in the US he monitored the desegregation of the public school system and observed the controversial bussing of Boston school pupils.

Mr McDonald has worked in the ministry in Edinburgh and Aberdeen and studied part-time for a masters degree in theology at Edinburgh University.

He was called to the churches in St Andrews seven years ago and has been a familiar voice on Thought for the Day on BBC Radio Scotland.

The moderator-designate has a variety of interests, including golf, running, walking, music and Aberdeen Football Club.

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