2022 GA Seminars

All seminars will be held on Tuesday, June 21st.

How To Train Elders and Deacons

Speaker(s): Jonathan Stoddard

Room East B (BJCC) at 2:30 PM

Are your elders eager to share the load of shepherding the flock? Are your deacons proactive in taking things off your plate so you can focus on the ministry of word and prayer? Unfortunately, it’s rare for church officers to feel like partners in ministry. One reason is officer training often neglects to spend adequate time training candidates for their calling. This seminar will give you a training program to help ensure the officers in your church are true partners in ministry. You’ll leave with a training template for your next officer training, one that does a deep dive into the candidate’s character and focuses on training them for ministry.

Succession Planning for Founding Pastors and their Session

Speaker(s): Rev. Dr. Chris Polski

Room East C (BJCC) at 2:30 PM

This seminar is designed to give founding pastors and their sessions a set of basic tools and guidelines that should be carefully considered in advance of making the perilous transition from their founding pastor to the first successor pastor in the life of their congregation.

Where’s the Nearest Applebee’s?: A Panel Discussion on Rural Church Planting

Speaker(s): Corey Pelton

Room East E (BJCC) at 2:30 PM

The PCA has been and is going to suburban areas in our church planting efforts. We have been and are going to cities and urban centers in our church planting efforts. Now we believe it is time for a concerted effort toward small towns and rural communities where there are many people thirsting in, what are very often, gospel deserts.

In this seminar you will hear from pastors who are currently planting, or have planted, a church or churches in a rural context. Are you being called? Is there a need? Can we really plant in a rural areas? Is it feasible? Will my wife be lonely? Are there different models? What about my kids? What can I expect?

Come hear stories of rural ministry and avail yourself to the opportunity to ask those lingering questions. God is doing something good in the neighborhood.

Viewing Pro-Life as Whole-Life

Speaker(s): Herbie Newell

Room East F (BJCC) at 2:30 PM

Being pro-life means that not only do we see abortion as murder, but we also see our apathy against injustice toward life outside of the womb as a co-conspirator in the fight for life. It means we fight for racial equality. It means we love the woman walking into the abortion clinic passionately with the love of Christ, and it means we embrace life no matter what syndrome may be attached to a person’s identity.
This discussion will cover the implications of current events, court decisions, and legislative actions and how the Church must respond.

Biblical Leadership: Effective Then…Effective Now 

Speaker(s): Winfield Tufts

Room East I (BJCC) at 2:30 PM

Leading a church is a never-ending challenge! Encouraging members to flourish in Christ is much easier said than done. Answers to the below questions can provide helpful insight.
– As a leader of a congregation/ministry team, where are you leading its members? What is
the destination?
– What are the key unspoken assumptions held by those you lead?
– How well do you know the needs, desires, and goals of the members of your
congregation/ministry team?
– If you understood those needs better, what would you do differently to encourage
members to flourish?

Reviewing and applying the below Biblical examples of effective leadership can help answer these questions.
– David’s example of Caring Leadership
– Jesus’ example of Relational Leadership

A Place to Serve: The State of Vocational Ministry in the PCA and Beyond 

Speaker(s): Joel D. Hathaway

Room East J (BJCC) at 2:30 PM

Is there a shortage of vocational ministry positions? Will seminarians find positions? How can churches secure trained ministers? And how does a minister best evaluate new positions? This seminar will provide some historic data with present implications for current and future ministers in the PCA. Best practices for ministry placement and replacement will also be discussed.

Restoring the Primacy of Christian Identity in a Polarized Culture

Speaker(s): Dr. Kay Gabrysch

Room East K (BJCC) at 2:30 PM

In many ways Christians have allowed secondary issues of the political and social culture to escalate into issues of religious intensity. These concerns are being brought into the church with such emotion they are dividing or “sorting” Christians into camps that abrogate our witness. How can we restore a Christian identity that supersedes all others? How can we discern what it means to follow Jesus in such a way that we are formed into people of compassion, love, justice, and truth? Drawing from two years of doctoral research, including in-depth interviews with seasoned PCA and Reformed pastors and leaders, Kay Gabrysch invites us to look to scripture as the foundation of our identity.

Stewarding God’s Story: Planning Scripture-Based Worship throughout the Christian Year

Speaker(s): Paxson Jeancake

Room East L (BJCC) at 2:30 PM

Pastors and worship leaders have the daunting task of planning and crafting worship every Sunday, week after week, year after year. This seminar will explore the benefit of using the Revised Common Lectionary (RCL) as a weekly guide and resource for Scripture-based worship planning. This approach can be of great benefit even if your church does not follow the RCL in its preaching. Highlighting his new book, Lectionary Journey: Worship Aids for the Christian Year, Jeancake will discuss how Scripture can be woven throughout our corporate worship services, informing our calls to worship, prayers, affirmations of faith, and other elements. In addition, he will share how we can steward the gospel story by following the cycles and seasons of the Christian Year, marking time through the life and present realities of Christ. Finally, he will discuss how Lectionary Journey can be a practical resource for spiritual formation among individuals, families, and small group leaders who may use it for weekly devotions and Bible studies.

Productive Cross-Generational Discussions about Social Justice

Speaker(s): Bill Davis

Forum A (Sheraton) at 2:30 PM

Consider the claim, “I have 20,000 Instagram followers.” One Christian hears, “I have spent a grotesque amount of time on a vanity project.” Another Christian hears, “I have worked hard to develop a platform where my voice will be heard.” Each is likely to think the other’s reaction is wrong. Through 20 twenty years of teaching Covenant College students and adult Sunday school to people his age, Bill Davis knows from both groups that they want to have conversations with people not their age at church. This seminar will identify reasons the discussions are difficult and show how even one committed, prepared person can make the discussions work.

Ten Myths of the Sexual Revolution: How Current Scientific Evidence Supports the Biblical Paradigm for Sexuality

Speaker(s): Steven Willing, MD

Forum B (Sheraton) at 2:30 PM

This brief introduction to sexual apologetics will endeavor to show that the best scientific evidence supports the Biblical sexual paradigm, refuting 10 popular myths in present society:

Ten myths:
1. “Gender is a social construct”
2. “Intercourse between consenting adults is harmless”
3. “Pornography doesn’t hurt anyone”
4. “It can’t be wrong if I’m born that way”
5. “The sexual revolution was a boon for women”
6. “We’re not responsible for sexual predators”
7. “There is no meaningful difference between homosexuality and heterosexuality”
8. “Marriage is just a piece of paper”
9. “Chastity and monogamy are oppressive”
10. “The children will be fine”

How to Bring a Trifecta of Goodness to Your Grandchildren

Speaker(s): Tony Souder

Forum F (Sheraton) at 2:30 PM

Experts say that behind parents, grandparents are the most influential people in the lives of children and youth. When passing on the Faith, it may be more important than ever for grandparents to be intentional in how they invest in their grandchildren’s lives. The 30 million Christian grandparents in the United States can play a significant role in whether or not the emerging generations will trust and treasure Christ for a lifetime. This seminar will explore how to bring a Trifecta of goodness to your grandchildren through stories of God’s greatness, Scriptural prayer and creating life-giving intergenerational relationships.

How to Teach Through the Old Testament in 10-12 weeks

Speaker(s): Jay Sklar

Room 1 (Sheraton) at 2:30 PM

For many people, the OT (Old Testament) is like a box full of puzzle pieces with no overarching picture to help them know how to put the puzzle together. You can help with that! This seminar will equip you with one major tool and several resources that will enable you to teach people the big picture of the OT over 10-12 weeks. By the end of your teaching, people should understand the OT’s historical and theological milestones, how they fit together, and how they prepare us for the OT’s fulfillment in Jesus.

“Finitude Is Not Sin: Preaching and Modeling the Good of our Limits”

Speaker(s): Kelly M. Kapic

Room III (Sheraton) at 2:30 PM

Work. Family. Church. Exercise. Sleep.The list of demands on our time seems to be never ending. It can leave you feeling a little guilty–like you should always be doing one more thing.

Rather than sharing better time-management tips to squeeze more hours out of the day, Kapic takes a different approach.

Kapic explores the theology behind seeing our human limitations as a gift rather than a deficiency. He lays out a path to holistic living with healthy self-understanding, life-giving relationships, and meaningful contributions to the church and world. The hope is that we might be free from confusing our limitations with sin; instead, Kapic invites us to rest in the joy and relief of knowing that God can use our limitations to foster freedom, joy, growth, and community. The goal is to foster gratitude, rest, and faithful service to God.

The Power of Men’s Discipleship in a Disconnected World

Speaker(s): Stephen Estock and Dustin Belue

Room IV (Sheraton) at 2:30 PM

The pandemic has created a culture of isolation—even in the church. As believers, we seek to follow Jesus as part of a community. In this seminar, members of the CDM Men’s Ministry Team will consider best practices to begin and sustain a men’s ministry in your church. After reviewing results from the survey at last year’s Assembly, the group will consider common questions and obstacles to developing relationships among your men that are centered on God’s Word.

Church Plant Particularization: A Legal/Operational Guide

Speaker(s): Phil VanValkenburg and Keith Moore

Room V & IX (Sheraton) at 2:30 PM

Planting a church, of necessity, involves creating a business. This seminar offers an overview of the fundraising, legal, operational, policy, systems, staffing, and technology aspects needed to support a church plant, from fundraising to particularization. Whether you are a church planter, a sponsoring church, presbytery or CP network representative, you will gain a clear view of key issues faced and options to navigate them successfully.

Black Church?

Speaker(s): Wy Plummer, Howard Brown, Kellie Brown, Charles McKnight, Alex Shipman, Jenell Chavis

Room XI (Sheraton) at 2:30 PM

There is an urgent and critical need for a refocus on Black church Planting in the PCA. Come hear why, and how you can join this reviving movement.

A New Generation of Korean-American Church Planters

Speaker(s): Aaron Chung, Hansoo Jin, Dr. Robert Kim, and Moses Lee

Room XII (Sheraton) at 2:30 PM

The obstacles for church planting are compounded for the next generation of Korean-American church planters in the PCA due to a lack of resources, networks, and contextualized coaching. Yet, through creative outreach, critically appreciating older models, and sheer grit, several church plants have stepped up to meet the challenge. A combination of Xennial and Millennial panelists will share their stories, share what they would’ve done differently in retrospect, and answer questions from the audience as moderated by Dr. Robert Kim.

The Benefits of Organizational Health in the Church

Speaker(s): Ted Powers and Vincent Tauriello

East A (BJCC) at 3:35 PM

This seminar will present the benefits of organizational health in the church. It will be extremely practical in addressing how to build a church that functions effectively and fruitfully. We will talk from years of experience about what works and what does not work and what is really necessary to create organizational health. It will draw on years of experience and provide many practical examples and helps for things like: how to run an effective meeting, how to apply the Jethro principle and Ephesians 4 to your leadership and team, how to deal with micro-managing, and ego in leadership. It will help leaders reflect on themselves and their leadership in terms of getting everyone on the same page and knowing how we can work best together and what role each part plays and how to bring about the greatest spiritual benefit to the church and the community.

Pursuing Perfection— Michelangelo’s David and our Hunger for Glory

Speaker(s): Russ Ramsey

East B (BJCC) at 3:35 PM

This multimedia examination of how Michelangelo’s David came to be highlights our hunger for glory, and how our desire for perfection is actually a longing for another world.

Ethics in Paul: Christian Obedience in Union with Christ

Speaker(s): Brad Matthews

East C (BJCC) at 3:35 PM

This seminar will show how Paul’s ethical instructions are not an optional addendum to his theological discourse, but rather the necessary outworking of a believer’s union with Christ. After a brief survey of what Paul says about the nature of the believer in union with Christ, attention will be given to the implications of the already & not yet for Paul’s ethics. Further examples will be drawn from Paul’s exhortations, which in turn will lead to a discussion of Calvin’s heuristic of the threefold use of the law. Finally, time will be devoted to the implications this has for our preaching and teaching in the context of the church.

Navigating Leadership Challenges in Chaotic Times: Staying Gospel-Centered Amidst Cultural Turmoil

Speaker(s): Josiah Bancroft

East E (BJCC) at 3:35 PM

It’s never been harder to be a pastor. The challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, unprecedented polarized political views, and the unmet promises of racial and social equality have left churches divided and leaders exhausted. They have also revealed how often our personal and corporate identities have been shaped by culture instead of by our status as God’s beloved children. Josiah Bancroft draws on his decades of organizational leadership, and Serge’s unique experience helping missionaries navigate cross-cultural challenges, to provide biblical principles and practical helps for those seeking to stay gospel-centered in their leadership even as they navigate deeply challenging times.

Embracing Single Adults in the Church Family

Speaker(s): Jenilyn Swett

East F (BJCC) at 3:35 PM

Church can be a difficult place for single adults, who may feel unseen, unwelcome, and isolated. Yet our churches have a wonderful opportunity to embrace the single people in our midst as part of our spiritual families and to celebrate our interdependence on one another in the body of Christ. How can we seek to do this more intentionally through our teaching, discipleship, and church programming? This seminar will provide insights into some particular challenges and opportunities of singleness, as well as practical guidance for how our churches can minister well to those who are single or single again.

Calvin’s Political Theology for the Church in Our Time

Speaker(s): Darin Stone

East I (BJCC) at 3:35 PM

Many within the local church are confused, angry, and misguided around issues of civil government. The great reformer, John Calvin, navigated complicated political issues in his time and his political theology is immensely helpful for us today. This seminar will survey Calvin’s view of secular authority while offering practical applications for the church’s health, unity, and public witness.

Thinking Theologically about Bitcoin

Speaker(s): Timothy Fox

East J (BJCC) at 3:35 PM

This seminar will explain the growing monetary technology of Bitcoin in light of what the Bible teaches about money, saving, and stewardship, as it will likely become an extremely important form of global money in the decades to come, as well as a far more fair, just, and safe form of money than what the world has had for the last 100 years.

The Beauty of Laboring Together: The Enjoyment of Brothers and Sisters Laboring Together in the Church.

Speaker(s): Adam Coppock and Alex Kocher

East K (BJCC) at 3:35 PM

God gives us a beautiful, counter-cultural vision of men and women laboring together in His kingdom. Without compromising Scripture’s clear boundaries for men’s and women’s roles, Churches have the opportunity to display the beauty of men and women co-laboring in a way that values all the members of the church and cultivates their giftings. Church leadership should encourage men and women to labor in such a way that women feel intentionally sought after for their giftings, expertise, and voice for the building up of the body of Christ. In this class we will offer a vision for how to better value and cultivate the women of your congregation and we will hear the impact when sisters have the freedom to operate within their giftings. We will also talk about the power of community as staff members enjoy one another as they labor together.

Uniting the Church through Church Planting

Speaker(s): Robert Kim & Dean Faulkner

East L (BJCC) at 3:35 PM

Like, “A rising tide lifts all boats;” church planting can provide a catalyst to lift all churches. The planting of new churches creates a unified vision for the mission of the Church expressed in local communities. The challenges we are facing (polarization, post-Christian context, etc.) require a vision to reclaim and present the beauty of the bride of Christ on display. Drs. Faulkner and Kim will share from a biblical and practical perspective as they help equip the next generation of church planters at RTS Charlotte and Covenant Seminary.

Sex and Sanctification: PCA Standards in Light of the Study Report on Human Sexuality.

Speaker(s): Bryan Chapell

East M (BJCC) at 3:35 PM

This seminar will examine key statements of the Study Report on Human Sexuality as they relate to our Confessional Standards on sanctification.

A Chosen Race: A Biblical Foundation for Cross-Cultural Ministry

Speaker(s): Brett Barbee

Forum A (Sheraton) at 3:35 PM

Is your ministry cross-cultural? Are you tempted to retreat under the shadows of cultural experts and superstars? Are you dizzy with the approaches and philosophies of racial reconciliation? Has discouragement caused your love for others to grow cold? Or In efforts to unify, have you wrestled with the concept of showing preference to one culture over another? Is there a right way to go about reaching the nations? Is there a more excellent way? Come be refreshed and equipped in a biblical foundation for cross-cultural ministry!

Outsiders on the Inside: Church Culture, Minority Fatigue, and Racial Hospitality

Speaker(s): William Boyce

Forum B (Sheraton) at 3:35 PM

From its beginning, the PCA has lauded two goals: to be “faithful to the Scriptures, true to the Reformed faith, and obedient to the Great Commission,” and to welcome all races into worship. Our doctrines encourage racial hospitality. Simultaneously, the PCA’s minority pastors often express a sense of racial fatigue within the denomination. Drawing on my Doctor of Ministry research among Black PCA pastors, this seminar explores the experience of being a minority pastor in the PCA, with an emphasis on how to become a culture that heals these wounds of division.

Blessing the Children of Your Church: How Elders Can Shepherd the Whole Church Family

Speaker(s): Stephen Estock and Katie Flores

Forum F (Sheraton) at 3:35 PM

The theology of God’s Covenant means so much more than just “baptizing babies.” Peter’s exhortation to “shepherd the flock of God that is among you” (1 Peter 5:2) included the littlest sheep of the congregation as well as those who care for them. In this seminar, we will consider practical ways elders can bless children, parents, and ministry volunteers in the congregation. The good news is that blessing them does not need to include “adding one more thing;” rather, it involves being intentional to steward well the opportunities that arise naturally.

Two Apostles and a King

Speaker(s): Thomas Eddy

Room I (Sheraton) at 3:35 PM

We as a country and a church have become very politically polarized. In this seminar we will consider God’s involvement in the lives of the Apostle James, the Apostle Peter, and in the life of King Herod II. Can we learn how to cultivate unity in our diverse political views by considering the events recorded in Acts 12? We will explore the lives of James, Peter, and Herod and how God’s actions effect each one of them. We will consider the state’s use of the sword, God’s intervention in Peter’s life, the impact of death, God’s judgement (in this case to King Herod II but explore his judgement to those in power), and God’s providential hand in the world of politics, power, the church, and each of our lives. Come join us as we explore Church and State.

Applying Jesus’ Messages in Rev. 2-3 to the Church Today — ONLY Possible with True Unity

Speaker(s): John Purcell

Room III (Sheraton) at 3:35 PM

My experience is that churches today err toward two extremes — unanimity with artificial unity or organizational (which leads to relational) disharmony. These unbiblical extremes are mostly driven by our leadership. A lack of outward conflict is not shalom, and relational disfunction is not obedience. We’ll explore the lessons for the Church today of Jesus’ very specific messages to the 7 churches in Rev. 2-3 and how TRUE unity of our leadership is required to apply these lessons. Attendees may choose to take an online Rev 2-3 survey on their church in preparation for or to follow up the seminar.

The Power and Process of Questions that lead to wisdom and spiritual maturity in families

Speaker(s): Pete Deison

Room IV (Sheraton) at 3:35 PM

Discipleship of our children and grandchildren requires more skills than ever before. The power and process of questions was one the primary ways Jesus used to bring clarity and understanding to the crucial need of the moment. Understanding the ages and stages of our family members is an important factor in knowing how to ask questions that open the doors to deeper spiritual issues.

Building Safeguards Against the Abuse of Power in the Church

Speaker(s): Ken Sande

Room V & IX (Sheraton) at 3:35 PM

Few things made Jesus angrier during his earthly ministry than when he saw religious leaders misuse their power. Sadly, this problem continues to this day, as revealed in reports of mishandled disciplinary and judicial cases within the PCA and shocking stories of abuse by Christian conciliators. In this workshop we will discuss several cases where spiritual power was grossly misused, as well as how leaders can easily mistreat members without even realizing it. We will then set forth shepherding and conciliation principles and practices that pastors and elders can practice to ensure that they resolve conflicts and shepherd their flocks with such wisdom, gentleness and effectiveness that our Lord would commend their work with those marvelous words, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” All workshop attendees will receive free access to RW360’s online training in relational wisdom and biblical peacemaking.

Gospel Faithfulness under Cultural Pressure: Learning from the Reformed Churches in China

Speaker(s): Hannah Nation, Ryan Zhang, and Corey Jackson

Room XI (Sheraton) at 3:35 PM

How does a church under pressure stay renewed in the gospel of grace? For their 70 year history, the house churches in China have grown amidst cultural marginalization, political disenfranchisement, and periods of active persecution. In recent years, a growing movement of reformed, urban house churches (many of which are presbyterian) have begun to articulate an important theology of ‘walking the way of the cross’ which shapes their ecclesiology, evangelism, and discipleship. As our churches in North America navigate the increasing pressures of a polarizing culture, there is much to learn from our brothers in China. This session will not only discuss the growth of the gospel within China, but how local American churches can gain a clearer understanding of Christ’s kingdom and his call to the church by listening to the Chinese house church. By better understanding the church’s perseverance in grace and unity in another context, PCA pastors can gain practical tools for casting a vision of faithfulness under cultural pressure.

Using Cultural Sensitivity to Build the Body of Christ

Speaker(s): Maria Garriott, Leslie P. Johnson, Barbara D. Jones, and Omar Ortiz

Room XII (Sheraton) at 3:35 PM

We are called to love our neighbors and the strangers in our midst, no matter who they are. How can a deeper understanding of culture equip us to fulfill this calling, and be more sensitive and welcoming? How do different cultures enrich the Body of Christ and help us grow spiritually in this beautiful community? Where do we go from here? We will examine Scripture, define culture, explore some key cultural differences, and discuss ways to keep learning.