Steven D. Johnson II is the senior pastor of Hope City Church, a vibrant, growing
faith community with a long history of serving residents of southern
California. Pastor Johnson’s ministry demonstrates a teaching and preaching proclamation
which is biblically and exegetically sound, socially conscious, culturally
relevant, and applicable to contemporary hearers. Evidenced by a host of awards
and recognitions, Pastor Johnson’s work focuses specifically on inspiring individual
success by empowering people to live out their God-ordained
destiny and developing themselves educationally, socially and culturally.
Believing that at its best ministry is done both inside and outside the walls
of the church, Pastor Johnson encourages social and political activism,
community and economic development, innovation and entrepreneurship.
from a rich family heritage of pastors, preachers, evangelists and missionaries,
Pastor Johnson is a fourth-generation preacher who has a genuine love for
people. He enjoys building relationships with individuals and families across
all backgrounds and enjoys interacting with all generations – young, old and in
between. He loves everything about the many contours, complexities and
challenges of ministry – from moments of joy and triumph, to standing in prayer
with his parishioners during times of crisis and great travail. Further, he
believes that the church is undoubtedly one of the best places to promote
community, heal racial and cultural divides, work towards social justice, promote
education and entrepreneurship, and help people live up to their full potential
only is Pastor Johnson called to ministry, but he is also uniquely called to
business. A sought after consultant in real estate development and finance, he has helped manage high impact public
infrastructure projects, multifamily developments, industrial warehouses, and
commercial centers. He has offered counsel or managed due diligence, entitlements, financing, and construction of projects of various scopes for both private and public ventures.
a significant premium of higher education and academic achievement, Pastor Johnson
graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Finance and
Economics from Morehouse College. He attended seminary at Duke University where
he graduated with a Master's of Divinity degree. Never completely satisfied,
while fulfilling the duties of the pastorate he earned his MBA degree in Finance the
University of Redlands, graduating Summa Cum Laude. In Fall 2018, he returned to Duke University to pursue doctoral studies and has recently completed his doctoral thesis entitled “A Strange Land: Christian
Discourse and Action in An Age of Political Upheaval.” He will receive the Doctor of Ministry degree in May 2021.
noteworthy honors and recognition have been bestowed on Pastor Johnson
throughout his educational and professional career. As a student at Morehouse,
he was named a Benjamin Elijah Mays Scholar, an Otis Moss Jr.’s Oratorical
Contest Winner, and an E.B. Williams Honor Recipient. At Duke University, he received
the prestigious Martin Luther King’s Jr. Scholarship and the renowned Jameson
Jones Preaching Award. He has traveled internationally for ministry work and
has interned at church’s across America and the world – from Cashiers, North
Carolina to Johannesburg, South Africa.
additional unique experience for Pastor Johnson has been his exposure and
upbringing in various mainline protestant denominations. Although his late
grandfather – Hardy Johnson Sr. – was an elder in the Church of God in Christ,
one of the largest black denominations in North America, Pastor Johnson (by way
of his own father Rev. Steven D. Johnson) also served under the leadership,
guidance and mentorship of Rev. Dr. Cecil L. Murray, the famed pastor of First
AME Church, Los Angeles. Adding to this melting pot of various religious
expression and tradition, Pastor Johnson attended Duke University Divinity
School – a United Methodist seminary – and counts among his exemplars Rev. Dr.
William C. Turner, pastor of Mt. Level Missionary Baptist Church in Durham, NC.
Such a wealth of diversified denominational experience and exposure has served
to provide Pastor Johnson with a well-rounded ministry perspective and bourgeoning
Christian theology that places a premium on pneumatology and praxis, holiness
and methodism, progressivism and conservatism.
personal level, Pastor Steven enjoys reading, traveling, RVing, fishing and
riding Harley Davidson motorcycles. He is blessed with the love of his life,
Jennifer Johnson, and together they are the proud parents of two gorgeous and
precocious daughters, Saraiya Elise and Jordynn Rae, and their handsome son,
Steven Dewayne Johnson III.