I currently serve as the Youth and Young Adult Pastor at Frederick Church of the Brethren. I’m passionate about youth ministry and helping students own their faith. I’ve served in a variety of churches and had the opportunity to know some absolutely phenomenal students. I think that the way we’ve done youth ministry for many years is actually broken, and we need to return to the core of our faith without the distractions of entertainment and the need to ever expand getting in the way of loving God and loving others–and helping students learn to do the same.
I also hold two MA degrees; one in Biblical Languages, and the other in Old Testament. My undergraduate work was in Bible, with a minor in youth ministry. This makes me more than a little bit of an odd ball in youth ministry circles, but we tend to be an odd bunch anyway. It does mean that I am sometimes frustrated by the tendency among youth pastors to focus more on the medium than the message, however.
If it isn’t obvious from my education, I’m a bit of a geek. I love reading about linguistics, biblical studies, and basically anything on the Old Testament. Spiritual Formation works a la Dallas Willard, Eugene Peterson, and Henri Nouwen are high on my list too. I also enjoy reading theological thinking on youth ministry, my favorite authors being Kenda Creasy Dean, Andrew Root and Mark Yaconelli. If that doesn’t make me odd enough, I enjoy fantasy literature–Brandon Sanderson being my current favorite, though Pat Rothfuss, Mercedes Lackey, J.K. Rowling (what is it with the Brits and initials?), and of course J.R.R. Tolkien also deserve mentions. To say nothing of R.A. Salvatore, Tad Williams, Robert Jordan, and a host of others.
Perhaps most importantly, I’m married to the lovely Carol Amanda Park who is my equal in every way. We have a three-year old boy who enjoys running around, jumping on things, and has a vocabulary that is scary for its expansiveness; and we’ve recently added another little one to the mix. Life is good.
cpark2005 [at] *remove* gmail .com