On Sunday, June 9, 2019, Myers Park Presbyterian held a congregational meeting to hear from the Associate Pastor Nominating Committee and to vote on their recommendation. The congregation voted unanimously to call the Rev. John Magnuson to serve as Associate Pastor for Discipleship. Missed the meeting? Catch it at the beginning of the recorded live stream from Sunday.

About John


  • Associate Pastor Discipleship | Shadyside Presbyterian | Pittsburgh, PA (2013-2019)
  • Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies | Westminster College
  • Master of Divinity | Pittsburgh Theological Seminary
  • Doctor of Ministry in Missional Leadership | Pittsburgh Theological Seminary (pending, anticipated completion 2020)

My wife Olivia and I have two children, Ruthie Rae (almost three) and Foster Lorelai (six months), and a dog named Koda.

Olivia and John Magnuson

Personal Life
When thinking about who I am at my core, I am avidly curious and a lifelong learner. Since I was a child I’ve always enjoyed asking the “why’s, how’s, and what’s” of life. Now that Olivia and I have two little girls, I continue to enjoy following life’s curiosities through their eyes, seeing dining room tables as caves, the flickering of lights as fairies, and marveling at when we can see the moon in the morning sky. I enjoy seeing each of these moments as an opportunity to be surprised by God’s presence in our midst.

I love being a pastor, and often marvel at what I get to do as a call and for a living, but I also enjoy being outside, cooking, reading, and relaxing with family. I so look forward to settling into Charlotte and exploring the city and life with you all.

From the Candidate:
“Christ is the core that holds us together, and as the core, I believe Christ calls us to engage with the society that surrounds us. I look forward to slowly and gracefully challenging and encouraging people to think about how Christ calls us to engage with the world around us by looking outside of the church walls and into our personal and public lives. This type of change takes time, but I am committed to walking alongside you all through years of listening, building trust through relationships, studying scripture, enjoying fellowship, and worshiping together. Together we can hold on to our unity in Christ while engaging topics and issues that typically threaten to divide us. Not only is this way of being together beautifully formative, it is faithfully following where Christ calls and leads us. I look forward to discerning together where God is moving and whereby the Spirit Christ is calling us as His body.”

Recommendation from the Committee:
The Associate Pastor Nominating committee began our search for an Associate Pastor of Discipleship in April 2018. Over the last 14 months of reflection, discernment, and prayer, we have grown to trust in each other and the process as we recognized the Spirit’s presence at work in this committee. It has been an extremely fulfilling journey.

Our first step in the search process was to understand and define this new pastoral position. While this call may appear to replace both the previous Associate Pastor of Adult Faith Formation and Associate Pastor of Outreach, this is truly a brand new position for Myers Park Presbyterian. After evaluating both our staffing and congregational needs we believe we have found an Associate Pastor for Discipleship who will lead us to grow in our faith and live as disciples both within and outside the church walls.

John Magnuson is currently working on his Doctor of Ministry with a focus on Missional Leadership. He has broad leadership experience in Adult Faith Formation and a deep heart for Outreach. He sees Bible study and mission not as separate “programs,” but holistically as paths to discipleship and a deeper faith.

We met many gifted pastors throughout our nationwide search, but we believe God has called Myers Park Presbyterian and John Magnuson together, to nurture belonging within the church, discern our calling as a congregation through faith formation, and to experience and share the love of Christ with our neighbors.

With complete confidence and great joy, we recommend the Reverend John F. Magnuson.