Bill Shishko was born on December 18, 1951 in Putnam, Connecticut, the rural northeastern corner of that New England state. He was raised in a nominal Greek Orthodox home, although he received some early religious instruction at a local Episcopal Church.
Bill went through the turbulent period of the 1960’s and, as a result, became enamored of the Marxist ideology that was then common among young people. He began working in radio at the age of 15. Through a Christian radio program (which was aired on the Sunday mornings on which he worked at the radio station) Bill heard the Gospel presented and was converted in February,1970.
On the advice of a local pastor, Bill changed his plans to attend Clark University and, instead, attended Bob Jones University, Greenville, SC beginning in August,1970. It was there that he first learned the Reformed faith. He became a member of Shannon Forest Presbyterian Church (RPCES), led the youth group of that congregation, and also taught the church’s large adult Sunday School class. He graduated University in 1974, and remained on for two years as a teaching assistant in the history department. During that time he met Margaret Reader, the woman who would become his wife in June, 1976. It was also during that time that the session of the Shannon Forest Presbyterian Church encouraged Bill to attend seminary and pursue a call to the Christian ministry.
Bill attended Westminster Theological Seminary from 1976 – 1979. During the time of his studies he served for one year as an Apologetics teaching assistant under Professor John Frame. He also did an internship at a local Orthodox Presbyterian Church. He was licensed to preach the Gospel in 1978.
Following seminary Bill was called to serve as an organizing pastor for a Reformed Presbyterian Church, Evangelical Synod congregation in McClellanville, SC. Ordained in October, 1979, he served the mission church from July of that year through early February, 1981. In January, 1981 Bill was called to serve the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, Franklin Square, on Long Island, NY. He began his labors there in February, 1981. In June, 2016 he completed over 35 years of ministry in this multi-national suburb of New York City. During his time as pastor of the Franklin Square congregation the church was blessed with significant numerical growth, and has overseen the formation of four mission churches, one in Mount Vernon, NY one in Bohemia, NY, its first New York City mission work (Reformation Presbyterian Church), which meets in Fresh Meadows, Queens, and Trinity Church, which meets in Syosset, NY. The church also began a Spanish speaking ministry in nearby Elmont (Cristo el Rey OPC) – a work that has now been folded into the Franklin Square congregation.
During his time in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church Bill has been privileged to serve on various presbytery committees, and also on the OPC denominational Committees on Coordination, Ecumenicity, Home Missions, and Christian Education. For 14 years he served as an instructor in Homiletics and Pastoral Theology for the Ministerial Training Institute, OPC. He also served for 15 years as a visiting instructor and later as an Adjunct Faculty member of Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Taylors, SC, where he taught in the department of Applied Theology. He has written numerous articles for the OPC publications NEW HORIZONS and ORDAINED SERVANT, as well as magazines such as The Banner of Truth. His public ministries have taken him to various foreign mission fields, including Suriname, Cyprus, Egypt, Uganda, China, Eritrea, and Wales, and his conference ministries have been carried out in a number of states in our own nation and also in Canada. On September 1, 2016 Bill will begin ministerial labors in a call to serve as Regional Home Missionary of the Presbytery of Connecticut and Southern New York, Orthodox Presbyterian Church. Through his radio program “A Visit to the Pastor’s Study” he will be bringing Reformed pastoral ministry to people in the metropolitan New York area and beyond, as well as being engaged in the work of helping people establish Orthodox Presbyterian congregations within the bounds of his presbytery.
Bill and his wife, Margaret, have been blessed with six children, Nathaniel, Jonathan, Christopher, Timothy, Stephen, and Elisabeth. They also have five grandchildren. Bill and Margaret count it their greatest privilege to be servants of their Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and to serve Him in the Church of which they are a part.