Mount of Olives Church

Pastors & Staff

Church Office: 949-837-7467


Rev. John R. Steward

A native Californian, Pastor Steward received his B.A. from California Lutheran University and graduated from Wartburg Theological Seminary with his Master of Divinity degree in 1979. His first ministry was at Peace Lutheran Church in South Gate, California where he served from 1979 to 1984. He was called to the Bethel Lutheran Church in Encino in 1984, where he started a scholarship program for underprivileged youth to attend Bethel Lutheran School. He also created a camp scholarship fund for underprivileged youth.

Pastor Steward was called to serve at Mount of Olives Church as the Senior Pastor on January 14, 1993. Mount of Olives has a growing membership of over 1800 and reaches out to the community with many programs:  RHL Preschool - a Christian NAEYC accredited school, Adult Day Program for seniors with dementia, Kid City - midweek and weekend programs and services for children, Family Ministries, The ROCK –a program for the students and young adults of the community, and mission ministries locally and around the world, as well as supporting programs like the Southwest Community Center and South County Outreach.

Pastor Steward and his wife Torild, have a daughter and son-in-law - Astrid and Sean, a son and daughter-in-law - Sean and Jenny, and four grandchildren. 


Rev. James M. Reynen

Pastor Jim became the Student Pastor at Mount Of Olives Church in September 2000, and began Rock Youth Ministries. It grew in participation and programming to include mid-week Bible studies with worship services two days a week, leadership training for volunteers, plus highly successful winter and summer retreats. Since 1990, Pastor Jim Reynen has had great success building healthy student ministries, and developing spiritually mature leaders. 

Pastor Jim received a Masters of Theology from Concordia University, Irvine, and was called as Associate Pastor of Mount of Olives in September 2012. Pastor Jim now oversees Family Ministries which includes Kid City children's ministry and Rock student ministry as well as the ministry to young families. 

Pastor Jim and his wife Jennifer have two children, Grace and Noah.


Rev. Ed Ewart

Pastor Ed has worked as a camp director for youth in British Columbia, a pastor of education in San Diego, a Senior Pastor in San Francisco and Orange County, and as “Pastor for Discipleship” in Houston Texas. He has also served the community by giving professional leadership in organizations that serve those with disabilities, aging seniors and most recently Orange County’s hungry and homeless population. 

At Mount of Olives, he gives leadership both in pastoral care and in discipleship training through small groups. Pastor Ed says, “The influence of God through small groups has changed my life.” His doctoral dissertation was titled “Growing the Big Church Small” a reference to the biblical tool of small groups for making modern day disciples. 

Pastor Ed holds a BA from California State University at Fullerton, a Masters degree from Princeton Seminary and a Doctor of Ministry degree from San Francisco Theological Seminary.