Delegates from the Northeast District and the Penn-Jersey District met at Bethany Wesleyan Church in Cherryville, Pennsylvania, on Friday, June 8, to complete their merger, forming the new Northeast District.
The new district conference elected Dr. Karl Eastlack (pictured below) to an extended call as their district superintendent by a vote of 348-10. Dr. Eastlack has been the superintendent of the Penn-Jersey District since 2012. Rev. W. Paul James, superintendent of the Northeast (former Eastern New York-New England) District since 2008, retired. Assistant superintendent for the new district will be Dr. Anthony Graham, senior pastor of New Hope Family Worship Center in Brooklyn, New York.
The merging conference also introduced three church planters to begin ministry this year in the Boston area. The three planters are: Pastor Melinda Priest and husband, Jason, Pastor Juan Torres and wife, Esquinalea, and Pastor Alan Juarez and wife, Nelsy.
Dr. Eastlack said, “It was an amazing day to watch two districts drop boundaries and style of management in order to combine the resources, people and vision to enlarge Christ’s kingdom in such a meaningful way! There are now 48 million souls within the district boundaries. We carry Christ’s desire that each one has the opportunity to respond to his love as the gospel is presented to them!”
The newly formed district includes all or part of eight states—the heavily populated area comprising the eastern half of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, the eastern third of New York State (including metropolitan New York City), Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Vermont and New Hampshire. The new district includes 108 Wesleyan churches and a combined worship attendance of more than 12,600.