Burgoyne Nominated as East Coast Superintendent

Post a Comment » Written on February 23rd, 2006     
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CHICAGO, IL (February 23, 2006) – Howard K. Burgoyne, senior pastor at Newport Covenant Church in Bellevue, Washington, has been nominated to serve as superintendent of the East Coast Conference of the Evangelical Covenant Church (ECC).

Delegates will vote on his candidacy during the East Coast Conference Annual Meeting April 29 in Springfield, Massachusetts. If approved by delegates, he will begin his new duties September 1, replacing retiring Supt. Robert Dvorak.

Howard K. Burgoyne “I am honored and humbled to be nominated for superintendent of the East Coast Conference,” Burgoyne says. “This is the conference where my parents were welcomed into the Covenant, where my faith in Christ began, and where my call to ministry was discerned and encouraged. It will be an unexpected homecoming.”

A graduate of Bryan College with an M.Div. degree in pastoral studies from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Burgoyne served associate pastorates at First Covenant Church in St. Paul, Minnesota, and Evangelical Covenant Church in Batavia, Illinois, prior to his move to Newport Covenant in 1995.

“While this call comes as a genuine surprise, there is a deep peace shared with my wife, Ann, and our two children that this is the path God has prepared for us to walk with him,” Burgoyne says. “That is a real comfort to us as we have really cherished our eleven years of ministry in Bellevue . . . with the great people of Newport Covenant Church. We hoped we would never be called to leave, but God is opening a new door for us to trust and proceed.”

Burgoyne’s nomination comes following an extensive search process led by pastor Eric Hillabrandt, chair of the East Coast Conference, in which ECC President Glenn Palmberg participated. The East Coast Conference Board began receiving names last September and appointed a Search Task Force to review the recommended names and narrow the list to a group of finalists for interviews, which occurred earlier this month. Burgoyne’s selection was unanimous.

“We saw in Howard someone who can engage the board and the conference as a whole in creative planning for the future,” says Hillabrandt. “He knows the conference well – he was born and raised here. There is a comfort level in that he knows many of the challenges facing the conference and our local churches.

“We also saw someone able to help us wrestle with God’s call for our conference, to help us hear and to offer good guidance,” he continues. “As we thought about Howard, we sensed he is someone who is comfortable waiting on God for guidance – someone who can approach situations with an awareness that goes beyond the corporate needs of a group . . . to discern a sense of call and be guided by the Holy Spirit.”

Burgoyne’s experience, both as a staff member and as senior pastor of a large church, were important in the decision, Palmberg says. Not only did Burgoyne serve a long-time pastorate, he also supported the planting of a church out of his own congregation, encouraging some of his own parishioners to form the core of the new congregation.

“Howard has been a very successful pastor and has served in a variety of settings,” says Palmberg. “He brings wonderful gifts to the office of superintendent. He has leadership gifts that are apparent to all who know him and he is a bright and gifted theologian and writer who is well organized, well read, and well respected.”

Experience and leadership qualities were not the only strengths that commended Burgoyne for the nomination, Palmberg suggests. “He also has a spiritual depth that comes through in the way in which he carries out and articulates his ministry, reflecting the depth of his commitment to Jesus Christ. He knows what it is to be a pastor and will be a support to the pastors in his conference. He is ready to be a superintendent. We will be well served.”

Burgoyne has been active in a number of local, conference and denominational organizations. These include volunteer chaplain of the fire department in Batavia, service on the Task Force on Morals and the Church in the Northwest Conference, chair of the Leadership Development Board of the Northwest Conference, chair of the North Pacific Conference Ministerial Association, and as a member and secretary of the Board of the Ordered Ministry for the denomination.

“Some people think the East Coast is a hard place spiritually, but I sense a deep hunger and spiritual longing among these people for a greater outpouring of God’s transforming grace and mercy,” he continues. “The East Coast Conference churches are in a strategic place and moment to join God in building the Kingdom, through expanding and strengthening their diverse local ministries, as well as planting new churches and ministries along the eastern seaboard.

“It will be an exciting adventure for me to get reacquainted with these churches, ministries and leaders and join them in moving together into the future God has in store for them,” he continues. “Bob Dvorak was my advisor and professor in seminary at Gordon-Conwell, and to follow in his footsteps will be a high calling and privilege.”

If approved by the Conference Annual Meeting, Burgoyne plans on tendering his resignation to the congregation the first week in May and concluding his ministry in Bellevue on June 30, relocating the family to the Hartford, Connecticut, area over the summer. His formal installation would come during the ECC Annual Meeting in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in June.

Copyright © 2011 The Evangelical Covenant Church.

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