Obituary for Dr. Rev.Andrew K. Meeder, longtime D.C. pastor and activist
Andrew Kistner Meeder, M.Div, D.Min, J.D., died peacefully at age 84 on the evening of June 29, 2016 at the Brighton Gardens Senior LivingCenter in Columbia, MD where he resided for the last 5 years during his illnessof dementia and Parkinson’s Disease. Andrew considered himself a long-standing Washingtonian, have lived most of his life in Washington, D.C. where he served as a United Methodist senior pastor at the Union United Methodist Church (1967-75 later to become The United Church, 1975-76) and Ryland-Epworth UMC (1978-89) and Mount Vernon Place UMC (1989-92), where he retired. His earlier pastoral service included the Channahon Methodist Church in Channahon,IL (1955-59), the Northview UMC congregation (which he founded) in Hollins, VA (1959-65), Marvin Memorial UMC in Silver Spring, MD (1965-67) and the Lanham UMC in Lanham, MD (1976-78). Andrew was born and spent his childhood years in Gatesville, NC and high school years in Norfolk, Va. From about 1984 to 2010, Andrew thoroughly enjoyed owning a beach house on the quaint island of Ocracoke, N.C., where by ferry boat he enjoyed the beauty of unspoiled national seashore and village life. Andrew served as Lt. J.G. in the U.S. Navy from 1953-55 and the Naval Reserves until 1964.
Andrew was a most accomplished academic, having earned a B.A. from East Carolina University, Masters of Divinity from Garrett Seminary at Northwestern University, a Doctorate of Ministry from Wesley Seminary at American University, and a Doctor of Law degree from the University D.C. Law School. His pastoral years were known for his ability to grow a church and increase a congregation both in attendance and in service. His counseling abilities made him a well-loved pastor who had tremendous impact on those he served. After retiring from 37 years in the United Methodist Church, Andrew served several years as a valued mediator in the D.C. courts before becoming ill. His superiors there noted that both his legal scholarship and years of pastoral counselling offered an invaluable contribution to helping families and youth settle issues peacefully outside the courtroom.
Andrew was married for 36 years to Verona Sparrow Meeder ,who currently resides in Columbia, Md. Together they raised their daughter and two sons-- Sheila Meeder Weber (married to William John [BJ] Weber and residing in New York City), Paul Andrew Meeder (residing with his mother Verona in Columbia, MD, and Hans Kistner Meeder (married to Lisa Spence Meeder, residing in Columbia, MD). Andrew is also survived by his grandchildren, Beth Anne Meeder Bradbury (married to Travis Bradbury), Maxwell Andrew Weber (married to Lauren Armstrong Weber), Joy Meeder Crook (married to Brian Crook), Rachel Grace Weber Nehme (married to John Nehme), Carrie Leigh Meeder, and Hans Kistner Meeder, Jr. Andrew is also survived by three great-granchildren: Meira Grace Nehme, John David Nehme, Jr. and baby Bradbury due in August, 2016. His beloved parents and siblings predeceased Andrew in death: John Jacob Meeder, Sr.and Clara Maei Meeder, Lottie Meeder Burke, John Jacob Meeder, Jr. , and Otelia Meeder Holloman.
Andrew was most passionate about his work for the underprivileged and social causes. He was extremely active in the civil rights movement and the anti-war movement in the late 1960s. Under his leadership,his churches started tutoring programs for needy children, as well as the Agape halfway house for troubled teens and runaways (with Agape coffeehouse in Georgetown in the early 1970s), and gospel outreach to college students at G.W.University during the aftermath of campus unrest and radicalism of the 1960s.
He is best remembered for his kindness to people who were alone and lonely. Even his later days of dementia were still marked by a sweet spirit and kindness to his family, to those who cared for him, and those who came to visit. The Meeder family is deeply grateful for the kindness and excellent care of the Brighton Gardens staff during the last five years.
A Memorial Service will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, August 8th, 2016 at Mt. Zion United Methodist Church in Fulton MD (12430 Scaggsville Rd which is Rt 216 off of I-95). A reception and light luncheon at noon will be served. All friends are welcome; not required but if possible please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to RSVP so we will have the right amount of food for lunch. We invite you to write and post memories and photos at https://www.caringbridge.org/visit/andrewmeeder
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Food Pantry at the United Church. Checks written to the United Church, with memo line to read "Food Pantry in honor of Rev. Andrew K. Meeder," and mailed to 1920 G Street NW, Washington, DC 20006.