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Student Ministry Connection

Christian Talk

For those who serve in student ministry, want to connect, and desire to grow. Hosted by Steve Cullum.

For those who serve in student ministry, want to connect, and desire to grow. Hosted by Steve Cullum.


United States


For those who serve in student ministry, want to connect, and desire to grow. Hosted by Steve Cullum.






086: MetaChurch Student Ministry with Dave Adamson

How can we leverage digital ministry to reach more students for the Gospel and connect way beyond our church walls? Dave Adamson, who is known to most people as Aussie Dave, is currently the Director of Orange Australia and New Zealand and recently released his book, MetaChurch: How to Use Digital Ministry to Reach People and Make Disciples. And on this episode, he shares some very practical ideas on how to connect with students using digital ministry. He also shares incredible encouragement...

085: Exciting News

Welcome to this very special episode of the podcast! As many of you know, we have been around as a podcast since February 2016. Over that time, we’ve had 85 episodes with over 70 guests. This started out as a huge experiment. I knew I wanted to have these conversations with others in student ministry, and I thought maybe others would want to listen in to those conversations too. Low and behold, you did want to listen, you keep showing up, and you keep sharing it with others. Please know...


084: Searching for Seven with Tyler Smith

Episode 84 of podcast features a conversation with Tyler Smith, who is a longtime student pastor, sports journalist, coach, and author of a book named Searching for Seven. In this episode, we will hear Tyler's story, what it is like to be a Christian in the sports world, and hear him share some wisdom around following Jesus all seven days a week. Links mentioned during this...


083: Family Camp with The Skit Guys

Episode 83 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Tommy Woodard and Eddie James of The Skit Guys. We discuss their stories, but we also spend time talking about their upcoming movie, Family Camp, which releases on May 13, 2022. Tommy and Eddie will tell you exactly why you should watch the movie and also how you can use it in your student ministry. And of course, they also offer some amazing encouragement to you, the youth worker throughout the episode. Links mentioned...


082: Wearing Many Hats with Jeremey Veal

Episode 82 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Jeremey Veal, the pastor of student ministries at GFN Church in South Carolina. As Jeremey currently leads out in a number of areas in his church, he has had to shift his focus to empower his volunteers and students, simplify the student ministry calendar, and more. If you wear more than one hat in your ministry, get ready to learn from Jeremey on how he has navigated that in his church. Links mentioned during this...


081: Download Youth Ministry with Josh Griffin

Episode 81 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Josh Griffin of Mariners Church and Download Youth Ministry. Josh is a veteran youth worker with over 25 years of experience who not only loves ministry to teenagers, but he absolutely loves equipping and empowering other youth workers. Before coming in staff with Mariners, Josh served for 13 years at Saddleback Church as the High School Pastor under the leadership of Rick Warren. He's also the co-founder of...


080: Youth Pastor Compensation Update with Dan Navarra

Episode 80 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Dan Navarra around youth pastor compensation. For the last 5 years, Dan has been providing amazing research around salary, benefits, and all things compensation within the world of student ministry. Dan does ministry coaching through Chemistry Staffing and has also recently begun a new role with National Christian Foundation, which he talks about briefly on this episode. Links mentioned during this...


079: Young Life with P.T. Smith

Episode 79 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with P.T. Smith, who is on staff with Young Life in the Denver, Colorado, area. Not only does P.T. share some of his incredible story, he also explains the ministry of Young Life and some ways you can partner with them in your area, and he provides some encouragement around what we can do in the area of racial injustice. Links mentioned during this...


078: Valleys Over Mountains with Tom Bump

Episode 78 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Tom Bump, founder of Restoring Leaders. Tom has many years of ministry experience within kids ministry, student ministry, and more. His organization is designed to help and restore ministry leaders who find themselves in especially hard seasons. In fact, that is also the topic of his new book, Valleys Over Mountains, which he discusses in this episode of the podcast. Links mentioned during this...


077: Importance of Serving with Marc Therrien

Episode 77 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Marc Therrien of workcampNE. Much of Marc's growth is connected to faith in action, which is why he now serves as one of workcampNE's directors. Through environments focused on home repair and the Bible, their team allows you, the youth leaders, to focus on the students, grow in your relationships with them, and encourage their relationships with Christ. If you are looking for a service-based trip for your students, be...


076: Every Student Sent with John Decker

Episode 76 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with John Decker of Every Student Sent, a unique community-based platform with vision of connecting students to existing ministries, churches, and each other in order to propel them towards Gospel-centered mission as they navigate and engage culture during college. In this episode, we'll hear John's story and take a deep-dive into this amazing resource and how it can help you, your students, your parents, and more. A special...


075: Navigating Uncertainty with Dr. Josh Packard

Episode 75 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Dr. Josh Packard, the Executive Director at Springtide Research Institute. He and his team conduct qualitative and quantitative research on the inner and outer lives of young people, ages 13-25. Recently, they released The State of Religion and Young People 2021: Navigating Uncertainty, a compilation of their latest research. Springtide states, "Over 75% of young people identify as religious or spiritual. But they told...


074: The Great Resignation with Todd Rhoades

Episode 74 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Todd Rhoades around what many are calling The Great Resignation, the phenomena in our current culture consisting of many people resigning from their jobs. And the church is not immune to it. We discuss the implications for the church as a whole and for those of us in student ministry. Todd has invested over 30 years in serving churches, having served as a worship pastor for over 15 years, a church elder for more than a...


073: Orange, Relationships, and Phases with Brett Talley

Episode 73 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Brett Talley. As a pastor’s kid, Brett grew up in the church world and felt called to full-time ministry at a young age. After jumping into the local church as a youth pastor and next gen pastor for over 11 years, he moved into his current role with Orange and Orange Students. Steve and Brett talk about what an Orange Specialist does, what Brett has learned after working with so many student ministries, and also about...


072: Programming Update 2021

Episode 72 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a programming update from Steve. He shares how last year's programming changes went along with sharing some insights from his summer experiences, and plans for the 2021-2022 school year. He also shares a couple stories about how God has used video games to connect with teenagers. Links mentioned during this episode: Sponsors for this...


071: Battling Anxiety, Depression, and Grief with Zack Ryer

Episode 71 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Zack Ryer. Not only is Zack one of Steve's former students, but he has recently started a music career (under the stage name, Dante Nazarro) focused on songs that he has written through his anxiety, depression, and grief. Zack and Steve talk about some things that helped him during his time in youth group, how Zack has now been able to help other teens, and about some ways youth pastors and youth workers can help other...


070: Youth Leader Oasis with Todd Pearage

Episode 70 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Todd Pearage. Partnering with Standing Stone, Todd and his wife, Lynda, run a ministry called Youth Leader Oasis, where they care for other youth workers and their spouses. In this episode, he not only shares his story, but talks about what his ministry looks like, how you can get the care you need, and shares a few tips for all of us. Links mentioned during this...


069: Recruiting a Great Team

Episode 69 of The Student Ministry Podcast features some tips around recruiting. If you are going to make a difference in student ministry, you need a great team around you. Maybe you have questions, though. Like... How do I build a team? How do I get more people to join our team? How to I get the right people on our team? How do I raise awareness of the needs we have on our team? Prayer is a vital part of anything. Of course, we need to be constantly praying about this—that God will lead us...


068: Remodeling Youth Ministry with Chris Talbot

Episode 68 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Chris Talbot. Not only does Chris serve in youth and family ministry at his local church, he also teaches youth ministry at Welch College and is the author of Remodeling Youth Ministry. In this episode, you'll get to hear Chris' story but also hear about how we can remodel our youth ministries to focus more on what the Bible says rather than chasing trends. Chris also shares what it is like to be a Bible college...


067: Pause Campaign with Emily Chapman Richards and Olivia Stanton

Episode 67 of The Student Ministry Podcast features a conversation with Emily Chapman Richards and Olivia Stanton from Show Hope, an organization started by Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman to care for orphans by engaging the church and reducing barriers to adoption. Not only do Emily and Olivia share their stories, but they also share some amazing and free ways to help educate and empower your students to play a role in this mission through the Pause Campaign and more. Links mentioned...