The 1993 General Assembly of the Church of the Nazarene in Indianapolis, Indiana, elected Dr. James Diehl to the Board of General Superintendents. In 2009, after he served 16 years in this role, the 27th General Assembly in Orlando, Florida, bestowed on him the honor of general superintendent emeritus status.
A love for ministry has always been at the center of his heart. He first demonstrated this in his pastorates in Iowa and Georgia. As pastor at Oskaloosa, Iowa, he conducted live radio programs for seven years and led his church to develop a weekly television broadcast. He came to the general superintendency from his senior pastor position at First Church of the Nazarene in Denver, Colorado. Ministry passion also led him to an administrative role at MidAmerica Nazarene University. Additionally, he served for a decade as a district superintendent, first in Nebraska and then in Colorado.
Dr. Diehl is a prolific writer of numerous articles that have appeared in the Herald of Holiness, Holiness Today, Preacher’s Magazine, Bread, World Mission, The Holiness Digest, Perspective, and others.
He has a great love for education. He is a graduate of Olivet Nazarene University, and in 1990 Northwest Nazarene University conferred on him a Doctor of Divinity degree in recognition of his outstanding achievements. His passion for education has led him to serve on the boards of trustees at MidAmerica Nazarene University (MNU), Nazarene Theological Seminary, Nazarene Bible College, and Northwest Nazarene University. He also served as chairman of the Board of Regents at Northwest Nazarene University. In 2011the Board of Trustees at MNU invited Dr. Diehl to serve as interim president of the University—a position he held for seven months while they conducted a search for a new president. At the close of his service at the University, the trustees presented James H. Diehl with the Lifetime Achievement Award.
Dr. Diehl married the love of his life, Dorothy, and together they raised four children. They have seven grandchildren and five great grandchildren. The Diehls make their home in Lakewood, Colorado.
As Paul described his ministry to Timothy in 2 Timothy 1:11, so Dr. Diehl describes his calling—to be a pastor, a preacher, and an administrator. While laying down the administrative call, his passion continues with an ongoing preaching ministry from a pastor’s heart. He frequently speaks at camp meetings, college revivals, district ministerial retreats, district lay retreats, zone crusades, and international events.