I sit down to catch up with Eddy Moratin and talk about his new role as Summit Connect Director. I’m ready to dive in with a ton of questions, but before I can even start he asks if he can pray over the blog post, that the words would be helpful and encouraging, and would point to what God is doing at Summit. This is the kind of person Eddy Moratin is: intentional and greeting everyone in the office as brother or sister. He’s completely engaged in our interview, but makes sure to introduce himself to another new staff member who walks by whom he hasn’t met yet. They talk about his The Crucible of Time sermon series and joke at his ability to make Frozen references mid-sermon. The laughing subsides and we get back to the interview.
SJ: For people who haven’t met you or weren’t here for any of your previous sermons, would you mind sharing a little bit about the background that brings you to this role?
EM: For the last 10 years I’ve had a personal mission to inspire and equip leaders to make a difference. For most of that time I’ve had the privilege of serving as the Executive Director of a Christian leadership development organization for business men and women, known as Lifework Leadership. Last year, I left to launch a new organization known as LIFT Orlando, which consists of business leaders partnering with residents to break the cycle of poverty in some of the most challenged neighborhoods in our city. The invitation to come and serve as Summit Connect Director is an opportunity to create environments for the development of leaders who can transform the future of both our church and our city.
SJ: What made you decide to take on the role as Summit Connect Director?
EM: Two events come to mind. Two years ago, when Isaac resigned, we had a meeting on a Thursday night with just Connect group leaders to communicate the news, encourage them, and equip them with tools for how to have the difficult conversations that would follow in their groups. At that time, I got a taste of a desire that many leaders had to feel connected to the leadership and strategy of the church.
The second reason was a year later, and we had even worse news to share. We were trying to figure out how to communicate the news to leaders in writing, and I had a visceral reaction—I wished we could have picked up the phone and contacted a dozen or so group leaders, who would then have reached to other group leaders and their Connect groups. It planted the idea that while we couldn't do that then, there's no reason we shouldn't be able to.
SJ: Where do you plan to start?
EM: We want to spend a lot of time listening to effective Connect group leaders to brainstorm the best ways to move forward. And we want to work closely with staff to make sure our vision and strategy directly inform the future of Summit Connect.
SJ: What’s your hope for Connect groups?
EM: We're still learning what needs to be done, but this much is clear: We want to see Connect groups as a means to an end rather than see the program as an end in and of itself. In other words, if the goal is to develop mature, Christian leaders, then Connect groups are one step in the process of maturing the body of Christ at Summit. Our hope is to develop leaders at Summit who feel connected to the vision and leadership of the church as well as to each other.
Guest blogger Sarah Joseph is a contributor to the Summit blog, SUMMIT MAGAZINE, and our Sermon Study Guides.