Dr. Carla Sunberg was elected 43rd general superintendent of the Church of the Nazarene at the 29th General Assembly in Indianapolis, Indiana, in June 2017. At the time of her election, Dr. Sunberg was president of Nazarene Theological Seminary, where she had been serving since January 2014.
She was ordained on the Russia North District, where she and her husband, Chuck, served the Church of the Nazarene for 13 years as pioneer missionaries to the former Soviet Union. While in Moscow, Russia, she served as director of Compassionate Ministries and later as director of theological education for the field. In 2005, the Sunbergs returned to the United States and began pastoring at Grace Point Church of the Nazarene in Fort Wayne, Indiana. In 2011, she and her husband accepted a call to serve as co-district superintendents of the East Ohio District Church of the Nazarene.
Sunberg has a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree from MidAmerica Nazarene University, a Master of Arts in Theological Studies (MATS) degree from Nazarene Theological Seminary (NTS), and a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Historical Theology from Nazarene Theological College and the University of Manchester, United Kingdom. In May 2012, she was awarded an honorary Doctor of Divinity (DD) degree from Olivet Nazarene University.
Dr. Sunberg has a long record of service to the Church of the Nazarene. She has served on the General Board; on the Board of Trustees for NTS and Mount Vernon Nazarene University; as a member and chairperson of the USA/Canada Region's Nazarene Women Clergy Council; and as a member of the board of the Church of the Nazarene's Pensions & Benefits USA. In addition, after serving on its board as the official representative for the Church of the Nazarene, Sunberg also served as president of Wesleyan-Holiness Women Clergy.
Sunberg is co-author with Gene Van Note of Faxes from Russia (Beacon Hill Press, 1996), as well as author of numerous articles for various church publications. She has also written Reclaiming Eve: The Identity and Calling of Women in the Kingdom of God (Beacon Hill Press, 2014) with co-authors Suzanne Burden and Jamie Wright, Reflecting the Image: Our Call to Mirror Christ in the World (Beacon Hill Press, 2015) written with Keri Mitchell, and The Cappadocian Mothers: Deification Exemplified in the Writings of Basil, Gregory and Gregory (Wipf & Stock, 2017).
Carla was born in Germany, the daughter of missionaries. She loves to teach and train leaders for the future of the church and has served as adjunct faculty for a number of institutions. Her heartfelt passion is a life of holiness and service for the Lord. Carla and Chuck are proud parents of two adult daughters, Christa, who along with her husband, Iain Maciver, and son, Theo, lives in England; and Cara, who with her husband, Justin Shonamon, and daughters Mackenzie and Alice, lives in Shawnee, Kansas.
Printable Biography (PDF)