March 15, 2020
Announcing Dr. Jin Hyo Lee as Senior Pastor of Worship Candidate
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Dear Chelten Family,
On behalf of the Pastoral Search Committee, I want to thank you for your prayers as we have worked to find Chelten’s next Senior Pastor of Worship. We believe that God has answered the prayers of our committee and congregation. Today we are enthusiastically and unanimously recommending Dr. Jin Hyo Lee to become Chelten’s Senior Pastor of Worship.
When our committee was formed nearly two years ago, we prayerfully considered the job description provided by the Elder Board as well as the congregational feedback given during the church’s visioning process that had recently been completed. This led our committee to conclude that our candidate must possess the following essential qualifications:
- Godly character
- Doctrinal soundness
- Shepherd’s heart
- Giftedness as a preacher
- Ability to work in the collaborative Pastoral Leadership Team model
- Ability to lead staff
The Pastoral Search Committee and the Elder Board agree that Jin consistently exhibits these qualifications and we are eager to introduce him to the people of Chelten for their consideration. Jin currently serves as an associate pastor at Stone Hill Church in Princeton, NJ. You will have several opportunities to hear from Jin and get to know him before the membership votes on April 26 whether to receive Jin as our next Senior Pastor of Worship. We have enclosed a page that includes Jin’s abbreviated biography as well as the timeline of key events leading up to the April 26 vote.
The Pastoral Search Committee first posted for the Senior Pastor of Worship position in September 2018. We received 167 resumes which led to us receiving 39 applications. We met many candidates electronically as well as through video and in person interviews. If you would have had the opportunity to look in on our committee deliberations, you would have seen how each of our committee members brought unique viewpoints that together represented our church very well. We saw many godly and capable candidates. Yet throughout our long process of considering candidates, we did not find a single one that our entire committee enthusiastically supported as the right candidate for our church – until we considered Jin. He was the first and only candidate that our entire committee enthusiastically supported because we all believe he exemplifies the most important qualifications we were hoping to find in our next Senior Pastor of Worship. We believe he will fit very well with our pastors, staff and congregation.
Jin grew up as the son of a pastor in South Korea. His family modeled prayer to God and communion with the Savior in the day-to-day life of his family. He says that his parents’ deepest desire is for him to be truly content in his relationship with the Lord and others. They continue to encourage him to examine his heart before the Lord. Because of his godly parents, Jin believes life is transformed through prayer and recognizes that his own life has been shaped through his prayers and the prayers of others.
Jin came to the United States from South Korea as a 17-year old high school exchange student. Because he loved the diversity of the United States, he made the decision to continue his college education and ministry here. His experience of living in two continents, obtaining degrees from three schools and serving in three churches have exposed him to a broad range of Christian views and taught him a lot about the grace of God.
Throughout the interview process with Jin, our committee witnessed his honesty, integrity, vulnerability, humility and transparency- all examples of his godly character. He has a joyful heart and seems to smile continuously. He is reflective, insightful, and spiritual. He displays a genuine heart of love and compassion toward God’s people. He is accessible, approachable and relational. The Pastoral Search Committee thoroughly enjoyed every interaction with Jin, since we appreciated his concise responses and some humorous moments as well. He is a good listener and good communicator. He has an excellent memory and truly values what people have to say, making sure that he understands what is on their heart and mind before he responds. We are confident that his door will be open to both staff and the church at large.
Jin loves the Lord and enjoys both the process of preparing for a sermon as well as preaching. He is an excellent preacher and is committed to the centrality of the gospel in every aspect of our lives. His preaching is compelling, thought provoking and it encourages change and transformation in the lives of listeners. His preaching is also clear and concise. He has a refreshing and meaningful way of illustrating his points. He desires that everyone from every culture and ethnicity hear the gospel, receive Christ, and live out the gospel in their lives.
Jin brings significant credentials to the Senior Pastor of Worship position. He received his Master of Divinity degree from Dallas Theological Seminary and earned a Doctor of Ministry at Westminster Theological Seminary. He has considerable experience in overseeing and leading worship services and has a biblical vision for worship. He has served as a pastoral staff in churches in Dallas and in Princeton and has been effective in both of these roles. In prior churches he was given significant ministry challenges to address. With a vision as to how they could be improved, he worked effectively turn those ministries around. He seems well equipped to not only envision a new path or direction but also to have the skills necessary to bring the desired path to fruition through his hands-on efforts and by his ability to train lay leaders and staff. We contacted several references for Jin. All were very positive, but one comment from a previous pastor particularly stood out to us. He prefaced his remarks by saying that he is someone who works with many ministry leaders and pastors and then stated that Jin is in the top 1% of all the leaders he has known.
Jin desires to be part of a pastoral leadership team and was specifically seeking a role in a church with a team model. This is what drew him to Chelten; in fact, Chelten was the only church to which he applied. We believe that Jin will fit well with our staff. He appreciates a collaborative environment among the team with which he currently ministers and makes himself available to the staff and the congregation. Our committee and Elder Board have found Jin to be doctrinally sound and in complete harmony with Chelten’s Statement of Faith.
As we spent time with Jin, we saw that shepherding is at the core of his being. He has a heart for people and possesses great warmth as a shepherd. He loves people and finds ways to let them know that he cares about them as he prays for them. He says that he gets his energy from being with others. While Jin is intelligent, confident and gifted, he is also very grounded in humility. He knows that he is not perfect, but he is transparent with his shortcomings and is willing to learn and grow. He reflects God’s grace by showing grace to others.
In closing, we want to simply say Jin loves God, loves people and thoroughly enjoys preaching. We are excited for the perspective, joy and leadership he would bring to Chelten. For all the reasons stated in this letter, the Pastoral Search Committee unanimously and enthusiastically recommends Dr. Jin Lee to be Chelten’s next Senior Pastor of Worship.
The Pastoral Search Committee
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Tentative Time Line of Events
Sunday, March 15
Announcement of Dr. Jin Hyo Lee during morning services
Wednesday, April 1 – Monday, April 20*
Virtual Meet and Greet Sessions
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Sunday, April 26
Dr. Jin Hyo Lee preaches at morning services