Reverend Eboni K. Marshall
Assistant Minister for Christian Education The Abyssinian Baptist Church, New York City Age: 28
The Rev. Eboni K. Marshall made history in 2007 as the youngest woman ordained to the Gospel Ministry by New York City’s historic Abyssinian Baptist Church. Marshall began at Abyssinian as intern minister for Christian education and youth and is now assistant minister for Christian education, dean of the Abyssinian Institute for Christian Education and editor-in-chief of The Abyssinian Spirit, a quarterly inspirational publication.
She enjoys being young in the ministry. “For the most part, [my youth] has been positive because I have an advantage in terms of growing, learning and looking forward to a long tenure,” she says.
Living her life purposefully, she advises others to find their passion and follow it. “Don’t get entangled in what others think that you should do, otherwise you will not fulfill what you have been placed here to do,” she warns. That’s sound advice from someone who taught and performed with the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater Foundation before devoting her life to the ministry.
Marshall received her call to the ministry at 18. There is so much work to be done, she says. “I recognize that someone has to do it and I would do an injustice to God, my community and myself if I didn’t.” She holds a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and African-American studies from Fordham University; master’s degrees in African-American religion and social ethics from Union Theological Seminary; and is a doctorial candidate at Union Theological Seminary/Columbia University Graduate School of Religion.
Quote: "The life you save echoes into future generations." - Dr. Emilie M. Tokines
Favorite book/author: Being and Time: A Translation of Sein und Zeit by Martin Heidegger
Xbox or PlayStation: Neither
Favorite sports team: Los Angeles Lakers
Jeans and T-shirt or suit: Both
First job: Dancer with the Paul Robeson Performing Arts Company
Favorite comedian: Chris Rock
Number of countries visited: More than 10
Other languages spoken: Spanish, French, Portuguese, Classical Greek and Hebrew.