Bishop Loyal Alexander Black, age 92, passed away on Tuesday afternoon, July 26, 2022 at St. John Specialty Care Center in Mars.

The child of Ray Alexander and Edna Stella Derr Black, he was born on May 23, 1930 in New Castle, PA. He graduated from McKeesport Technical High School in McKeesport in 1948, from Thiel College in Greenville, PA in 1952, and from the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Philadelphia in 1955. In 1985 Thiel College awarded him the honorary degree of Doctor of Divinity.

Ordained in 1955 by the Pittsburgh Synod of the United Lutheran Church in America, he served congregations in Donora, Beaver and Johnstown in Pennsylvania and in Wheeling, W.Va. In 1987, he was elected as the first Bishop of the West-Virginia-Western Maryland Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. At various times during his years as an active bishop, he served on the Board of Trustees of Thiel College, on the Board of Directors of the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg, PA and as the President of the West Virginia Council of Churches. He retired in 1997.

As with most clergy, in retirement he continued to serve and help congregations when requested, conducting worship services and, often providing pastoral care over extended periods of time in Lutheran, Episcopal and Presbyterian congregations.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife of 62 years, Eleanor Louise Hutchison Black, who died in 2020. He is survived by his children, Susan Ellen Black of Gibsonia, PA and Timothy Alexander Black of Pittsburgh, PA.

There will be no public visitation of worship service. He will be cremated and his ashes will be placed with those of his wife in Monongahela Cemetery in Monongahela, PA.

A requiem is being planned and the date, time and location will be announced on the West-Virginia-Western Maryland Synod’s website. Arrangements are under the direction of the McDonald-Aeberli Funeral Home Inc., 238 Crowe Ave., Mars, PA, and condolences may be placed at www.mcdonald-aeberli.com