Rev. Michael Parker was born in 1957 in Los Angeles and grew up in the Southern California area. He attended the University of California at Los Angeles, graduating with a double major in political science and history. He subsequently joined the Presbyterian Church and attended Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, CA. He later moved to Maryland and eventually decided to attend the graduate program of the University of Maryland, worshiping at the United Parish, and obtained his M.A. and Ph.D. in American cultural and religious history, graduating in 1994. In the same year he was ordained to the ministry of word and sacrament in the Presbyterian Church (USA). He then served for five years as a missionary in Sudan, teaching church history at the Nile Theological College, in Khartoum, Sudan. After taking a one-year study leave, he briefly studied French in Burkina Faso and then began teaching church history at the Faculté de Théologie Protestante de Butare, in Butare, Rwanda, completing his service in 2006. He has published two books: The Kingdom of Character: The Student Volunteer Movement for Foreign Missions, 1886-1926; and Children of the Sun: Stories of the Christian Journey in Sudan.
On September 3, 2006, Rev. Parker was installed as Interim Pastor of the United Parish of Bowie. He preached his last sermon as Interim on May 18, 2008. He is currently Coordinator for International Evangelism and Frontier Areas at the Presbyterian Center in Louisville, Kentucky.