- B.A., Moody Bible Institute (Chicago, IL)
- Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary (Dallas, TX)
- Ordained Minister, Presbytery of Texas, Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians (ECO)
- Ordained Minister, Evangelical Church Alliance International (ECA)
- 2003-2005, Youth Ministry Intern, Hanmee Korean Presbyterian Church (Itasca, IL)
- 2005-2006, Children's Ministry Intern, Binnerri Korean Presbyterian Church (Richardson, TX)
- 2006-2013, Youth/Young Adults Pastor, Bethany Presbyterian Church (Carrollton, TX)
- 2013-2014, Associate Pastor - English Congregation, Cornerstone Korean Community Church (Redwood City, CA)
- 2014-2015, Planting/Interim Pastor, Good Shepherd Church of Silicon Valley (merged with True North Church [Palo Alto, CA])
- 2015-2022, Pastor-Teacher, Lakeview Community Church (merged with Bethel Christian Church [Niles, IL])
- 2022-Present, Pastor, Bethany Presbyterian Church (Carrollton, TX)
- Gospel-centered cultural engagement
- Multigenerational spiritual formation
- Biblical conflict resolution
- Expository preaching
- Biblical life-coaching, advising, and counsel
- Worship/Praise spiritual leadership
- Immigrant church culture, structure, and governance
- Husband to Ashley
- Father to Ian (in heaven), Joy, and Jonah
Chester was most recently Pastor-Teacher of Lakeview Community Church in Chicago's northwest suburb of Niles, Illinois (now merged with Bethel Christian Church [PCA]), where he served faithfully from 2015 to 2022. In this role, he guided the new church-plant that began with three individuals into a strong spiritual family of fifteen disciples of Jesus Christ.
Beginning February 2022, by way of unanimous agreement and invitation, the Board of Elders (Session) called back Chester to Bethany Presbyterian Church in Carrollton, Texas, where he had previously pastored in youth and young adult ministry from 2006 to 2013.
Born in Chicago, Illinois and reared in the northwest suburbs of Chicago, Christianity was not received seriously nor genuinely into Chester's life from its inception, when he first heard the gospel as a child. Although he grew-up in a Christian home setting, a lot of what he learned in church from childhood didn't resonate with him personally. It all seemed superstitious. Eventually, everything became so routine that he just went along with what was taught, not caring so much whether it was really true or not.
But this all came to a crossroad in junior high, when Chester began struggling with his identity, born American yet with roots as an ethnic minority (Korean). Unable to identify fully as neither a Korean (due to language and cultural deficiencies) nor an American (feeling out-of-place as a minority in a majority-cultured environment), the foundational questions of life - "who am I, where do I belong, does God exist, and why am I here?" - interrupted his rootless life. With the help of a Christian youth summer camp and faithful Bible teachers/pastors, Chester heard the gospel message with clarity - grasping the glory of God's existence and presence, his own sinfulness and separation from this holy God, and the assurance that he was fully forgiven by the perfect substitution of God's eternal Son Jesus Christ in his place to become a child of God. God rescued Chester's rootless identity that stood on a sinking foundation, and raised him to the solid rock of His cross, resurrection, and Spirit - the keys to discovering his real identity, ordering truth to all that was disordered within him and troubled at making sense of the world around him. Then began a joyful journey to know and live with this God who revealed Himself in the person of Jesus Christ with the indwelling presence of His holy Spirit. Walking with Him day by day, Chester is still learning and growing in surrender to Jesus as his God, risen Savior-King, and sovereign LORD.
In high school, Chester was privileged to participate in an extended Christian mission trip to small, poor rural villages in southern Mexico. There, he became inspired by the preaching of God's Word and passion for souls within rural-village Mexican pastors and evangelists. Since then, he has discerned a calling from God to walk in their steps, preaching the full counsel of Scripture with a sincere compassion for souls exemplified by his Mexican pastor-evangelist mentors.
This calling from the Lord began with nine years of ministerial training at Moody Bible Institute and Dallas Theological Seminary. This calling continued with decades of ministering in his immediate context of English-speaking ministries within the Korean-American immigrant church since 2003. Immersed into a bifurcated environment, Chester's unique gifts include gospel-centered cultural engagement, multigenerational spiritual formation, and biblical conflict resolution. In addition, he enjoys preaching verse-by-verse, praying, praising with guitar, and creating gospel pamphlets for evangelism as conversation-starters with nonbelievers.
Chester married his better-half, Ashley, after only meeting her twice for a meal(!). Ashley was born and raised in Ansan, South Korea, and went to college at Chongshin University, where she completed her studies in early childhood education. Ashley has a particular passion for children with disabilities and special needs, with whom she has cared for at a childcare center in Korea for many years. Ashley served for over ten years in the English-speaking ministry of her home church at Ansan, South Korea - Ansan Dongsan Church. Their common love for English-speaking ministries in a bilingual context brought both of them together, and the Chung family was born. Chester is father to Joy and Jonah, alongside one teenage son in heaven (the late Ian Burns) - a former youth student he spent considerable time with during his single years as his youth pastor - who he considers his first child in the Lord, as his father in the gospel.
Before returning to Bethany Church, Chester maintained fulltime employment in non-pastoral work to financially support his family alongside his ministry at Lakeview Church for nearly seven years. Therefore, he fully identifies with the world outside of pastoral church ministry, the trials of financial difficulties, the working parent struggling to make ends meet for their family, the long hours in the office, the stress of instability, the sensitive balance between work-home-church. It is his hope to meet people where they are, turn their crisis into calling out for Jesus, and see them through to be faithful stewards and growers of God's resources, to the glory of Jesus Christ.
Chester's vision is to bring the "unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace" (Ephesians 4:3) to the church - especially within diverse linguistic, ethnic, and cultural contexts - turning barriers of context into bridges for connection so that the gospel of God’s reconciling power through Jesus Christ in the sacred work of the holy Spirit may shine forth to all.