Justin & Grace Kang: New Leaders in North York, ON
September 12, 2018
Justin Kang is a second-generation Korean, born in Toronto, whose big passions are for corporate prayer, one-on-one mentoring and developing leaders.
He grew up in the church but didn’t commit to seriously following Jesus until high school. As a teenager, Justin he had a powerful encounter with God through the church that eventually became what is now North York Central – where he was installed as Lead Pastor this past Sunday, September 9th.
Reflecting on his sense of calling, Justin describes his university years as filled with hours of earnest prayer. As soon as he could embrace an apartment empty of roommates, he would delve deep into Scripture, focusing especially on John the Baptist in the Gospel of Luke. He whet his appetite for theological studies, and as soon as he graduated from university, he went to Fuller Theological Seminary in California. There he interned at church in college ministry while completing his Master’s in Theology and Ministry. Upon graduating he returned home to Toronto, where he became a college and young adults pastor and also got married.
His wife Grace has a strong missionary heart, and shortly after their wedding they headed to Uganda on an 8-month short term missions trip. In doing discipleship and leadership training, Justin experienced a sense of calling to pursue being a lead pastor – though he didn’t know whether it would be possible as a young leader, being from a Korean church background where age is a significant factor. However, Justin continued pursuing God and looked into the Christian & Missionary Alliance where he learned about the opportunity to serve in the very church where he’d had an experience with God as a teenager.
Justin says that age is probably the biggest challenge he anticipates as a leader in this congregation. With 25 members, North York is small church, and in fact most of the members are older than Justin. To be of an Asian background as a young lead pastor is different than what most people are used to. For the first 1-2 years, Justin knows that his task will be to gain trust.
Love what God is doing through Justin and Grace? You can support them in the following ways:
Pray for them as they navigate this new role:
For their transition into this new role. It’s a unique situation as the church has been around for over 10 years, but at the same time it’s a new start and has a small church feel. There are a lot of dynamics to navigate.
For wisdom as they lead in this new context.
For the church’s five stated values to slowly come to fruition: community, being rooted in in the Word, discipleship, partnering with other churches, and the Gospel in all of life.
Learn more about North York Central.