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 Justo Morales who pastored in the Illinois and Lake Region conferences lived his life in service to God and to his family.

June 12, 2021

Lake Region pastor killed in car crash

Justo Morales, Lake Region pastor, tragically lost his life on Monday, June 7, in a car crash in Berrien Springs, Mich. He was with his wife, Rosa, who is in stable condition at Memorial Hospital in South Bend, Ind. 

Morales lived his life in service to God and to his family. At the time of his death he was working for the Lake Region Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, pastoring the Chicago Shalom II Hispanic Church and the Rockford Salem Hispanic Company in Illinois. He was also working as a Children’s Ministries presenter for the North American Division. 

Previously he worked as the Hispanic Ministries director for the Illinois Conference of Seventh-day Adventists and before that spent many years as a pastor and administrator for the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Peru. Morales’ passion was Children and Family Ministries where he and Rosa devoted much of their time to training leaders, teaching parents, and telling kids about Jesus’ love. 

Eddie Allen, Lake Region Hispanic Coordinator, remembers Pastor Morales as “an amazing man and an excellent worker who, with his wife Rosa, passionately helped with family life and children’s ministries in the Lake Region Conference.” 

Morales served Illinois for 17 years; 4 years as the pastor of the Fox Valley District, and 13 years as the Hispanic Ministries Director.  

Ron Aguilera, Illinois Conference president, said that he deeply appreciated Morales’ friendship and support.  “Justo served with gusto,” he said. “My fondest memories with Justo are the evangelism crusades we held together in Bogota, Columbia, and Panama City, Panama. His smile and enthusiasm communicated his love for God and people. I will miss my friend but look forward to a great reunion when our Lord returns in the clouds to take us home.” 

Carmelo Mercado, Lake Union Vice President and Multicultural Ministry director, says that Morales was a friend who always saw strong possibility in doing the work of God in unique ways and did not think in negative terms. "One of the things I will always appreciate about Pastor Morales is how he helped lead the Illinois Hispanic pastors to join hands with Lake Region Hispanic pastors and the Lake Union and the North American Division in a joint evangelistic effort with Elder Alejandro Bullon in 2008. This joint event was a first of its kind in our union. He was instrumental in leading his pastors to support this initiative. I will deeply miss out our conversations about life and mission. I long to speak with him again when Jesus comes again."

Survivors include daughters, Ana Le-Floch (son-in-law Ghislain) and Mirtha; son, Enrique (daughter-in-law Marcella); grandchildren, Gabriel, Alysa, Angelique and Elias.

The Morales family wishes to thank everyone for your prayers and messages. Updates on Rosa’s recovery and details about the memorial service will be shared on the Lake Union Herald Facebook page, as they become available. 

Katie Fellows, Communication Assistant, Lake Union Conference