Seaside is pleased to welcome Bishop Hope Morgan Ward as our guest speaker for the twenty-fifth anniversary service on January 11. This is the culmination of a year-long celebration. The January 11 service will begin with congregational singing at 9:45 with the formal service beginning at 10:00 am. This event celebrates the formal constitution of Seaside as a United Methodist Church in January of 1990.
A native North Carolinian, she was raised on the Morgan family farm in northeastern North Carolina in the community of Corapeake. Her home church, Parkers United Methodist Church, is on a three point charge. She is a graduate of Duke University and Duke Divinity School.
“Bishop Hope” as she is popularly called is married to Mike Ward, whom she met on a volunteer in mission workteam to Bolivia in 1975. They were married in 1977. Together they served as teaching parents at the Methodist Home for Children in Raleigh, North Carolina.
She has served as a youth director, Christian educator, pastor, Director of Connectional Ministries and district superintendent in the NC Conference.
She was elected to the Episcopacy in July, 2004 and assigned to the Mississippi Conference in 2004 and 2008.
Her spouse, Mike Ward, is an educator. He has been a high school teacher, coach, principal, local school superintendent. From 1997- 2004, he served as North Carolina State Superintendent of Public Instruction, an elected position. Mike is on the faculty of University of Southern Mississippi, consults and is advocate for children.
She and Mike have two children and one grandchild. Brooke Ward lives in Madison, Wisconsin and a PhD student at University of Wisconsin. Jason Ward and his wife, Alison Greene, and grandson, Amos, live in Starkville, Mississippi. Jason and Alison are both professors of American History at Mississippi State University.
She and Mike enjoy sailing and other seaside joys, jogging, and reading.