Leonia Church has some bittersweet news. Pastor Aiden, our brother in Christ and associate pastor, has been appointed to Evangelical United Methodist Church in Clarksboro, New Jersey. As you know, Sung Woo was recently recommended by the Board of Ordained Ministry and will be commissioned by our Annual Conference and Bishop John Schol as a Provisional Elder. It is common for pastors to receive a full-time appointment (one that is not split between two churches) at this point in their ordination process. Evangelical United Methodist Church is such a full-time appointment. It is a good church, and a good fit for Sung Woo… and Ji Sun. Pastor David is familiar with the church since he pastored First United Methodist Church of Mount Ephraim, only eight miles away, and was acquainted with the Rev. Gary Turk, pastor of Evangelical United Methodist Church, at that time.
Meanwhile, the Rev. Dr. Gina Kim, our Palisades District Superintendent, is working with Bishop Schol, our SPRC, and Pastor David on this change in appointment.
This is a exciting journey to be on together. Leonia Church and Pastor Aiden have come a long way together in the last seven years. Our church has grown and an important part of that growth has been our partnership in nurturing Pastor Aiden as he has gone from a quiet immigrant visitor on the back pew to “seminary intern” to appointed associate pastor and now to provisional elder and lead pastor of a full-time charge. (This is not to mention that Ji Sun is just a step behind in the process as she is now the pastor of Congers United Methodist Church.) It is right to be proud of Leonia United Methodist Church and of Sung Woo and Ji Sun, and of our God who has done so much in and through each of us.
Here is the bio for Pastor Aiden that appears on the Greater New Jersey Conference website to announce his new appointment:
Sung Woo Lee has served on staff at Yulrim Methodist Church, Seoul, Korea, as associate pastor of Leonia UMC, and pastor of Waldwick UMC. He holds the B.Th. from Methodist Theological University and the M.Div. from Drew Theological School. He is passionate about creating a vibrant community of believers deeply experiencing the love and presence of God in inspiring worship, finding personal revival in their relationship with Jesus, and extending this community beyond the church building to the world in humble service with the help of Holy Spirit. He has been married to his wife Ji Sun Yang (pastor of Congers UMC) for nine years.