Growing up in Northern Indiana and accepting Christ at an early age, Pastor Shawn experienced a solid Christian, but personally traumatic, childhood. You can read his 2016 memoir, All But Normal: Life on Victory Road to see how God used his mother’s traumatic brain injury (TBI) to develop a pastor’s heart in Shawn.
After completing a B.A. from Appalachian Bible College in 1989 and a Master of Divinity degree from Capital Bible Seminary in 1992, Shawn’s home church, Twin Branch Bible Church in Mishawaka, IN, ordained him to the Gospel ministry. During his nearly thirty years of ministry, Shawn has served as an assistant pastor in the Philadelphia area, taught Bible and New Testament Greek at his undergraduate alma mater, and for over ten years led Bible Center Church in Charleston, WV, as its Senior Pastor.
In September of 2008, Pastor Shawn became Calvary’s third Senior Pastor. As our lead pastor, Shawn serves as: 1) the primary voice of the pulpit, 2) the main vision-caster, and 3) the shepherd of shepherds. In addition, Shawn currently serves on the boards of Awana Clubs International, the Joni & Friends Foundation, and Los Robles Hospital in Thousand Oaks, CA.
In 1990, Shawn married his college sweetheart, Lesli and they have three young adult children: Jon, Katie, and Megan. The Thorntons love traveling, serving, and doing life together.