May 27, 2022 | By John W. Coleman

The Rev. Steve Morton, North District Superintendent, will become the Eastern PA Conference’s new Leadership Development Manager July 1. Morton, who has led the North District since 2018, will now help plan and coordinate a leadership development program to equip clergy and lay members to become transformational leaders.

The new position is a key part of the conference’s mission goals to foster vital congregations actively and creatively involved in discipleship development, mission-focused stewardship and intentional community engagement. Morton will design training programs to develop leaders who can guide others in pursuit of those goals, along with EPA’s mission to help end the sin of racism. That work may include creating a Leadership Academy to nurture clergy and lay excellence in ministry.

“EPA is committed to developing transformational lay and clergy leadership,” said the Rev. Dawn Taylor-Storm, Director of Connectional Ministries. “Having a staff position focused on leadership development will enable us to work directly with congregations, laity and clergy through coaching, small-group cohorts and resourcing.”

“My passion–and, I trust, my legacy–over the past 25 years has been raising up new clergy leaders and guiding local church transformation in the very measures which are now our official markers of vitality conferencewide” said Morton. As lead pastor of Hopewell UMC in Downingtown for 21 years, he led development of its Planting Seeds for Ministry Growth initiative that offered yearly training events for church leaders conferencewide.

“While I have been tremendously affirmed in my work as a pastor and district superintendent,” he said, “I look forward to this next season of my life where I have an exclusive focus on these areas of ministry and more time for participation in family life.” 

“Steve Morton is committed to raising up new and renewed leaders here in EPA,” Taylor-Storm said, “and we are thankful for the gifts of organizational leadership, stewardship development and intentional recruitment that he will bring to the Office of Connectional Ministries.”