October & November 2019

Connect with ministry leaders just like you.

Hear from veteran leaders and have conversations that will ignite your children’s & family ministries.

Welcome to

Ministry Spark Conversations

We need each other when it comes to leading well in children and family ministry. We need each others’ ideas, encouragement, stories, and even failed attempts to equip ourselves.
Ministry Spark Conversations are where all of it comes together–veteran leaders sharing what they’ve learned, group discussions to challenge and empower you, and time to worship our Creator together. There’s nothing like it!
Our Conversations events are all about community, and we hope you will join us. Whether you feel like you’re rowing up stream without a paddle or that it’s all smooth sailing, there’s something for you!

Our Theme:

Leading with Excellence

Leadership. In the context of ministry—where we work day in and day out to help kids more fully know, love and follow Jesus—we can make a strong case that God works well beyond our leadership strengths and weaknesses. We honestly see it every day.

But we can also make the case that—because of the eternal significance of what we do—the demand for excellent leadership is paramount.

Join us as we answer questions like:

  • What are the attributes of truly excellent leader?
  • Where do you excel as a leader?
  • What are the areas of leadership where you struggle?

Hear from one of these ministry experts

Aaron Cole

Do you want to be inspired to be a leader who asks good questions and actually listens well? Of course, you do! And that means you need to spend a morning with Aaron Cole. Aaron has developed the discipline to ask intentional questions and listen to how people respond. We can all learn from this leader who is naturally wired to share his passion for ministry and people. Aaron currently leads a large team at River Valley Church, in Shakopee, Minnesota as the Go Kids Pastor. And he’s definitely a leader worth following.

Courtney Wilson

Courtney believes the spiritual health of a church is determined by the spiritual health of the families that are in the church! Courtney has been in children’s and family ministry for nearly 20 years and currently serves as the Children’s Pastor for Christ Community Church in St. Charles, Illinois. She’s a brilliant writer and gifted communicator. Courtney is a systematic/process thinker and leader who has the eye to creatively lead a small number or large number of people. Her practices and disciplines will be shared.

Randy Isola

Randy believes that leading endeavors that impact young people for Jesus is one of the greatest eternal investments anyone can make. Randy has been leading church ministries since 1991 and is serving his 13th year as the Next Generation Pastor for Christ Community Church in St. Charles, Illinois. Randy is a Wheaton graduate, an avid reader of leadership books, a podcast listener, and he loves to teach. Randy is a linear thinker and leads from a thought-through, multicampus ministry strategy. He plans to share these strategies with you.

Sam Luce

Sam’s been swimming in ministry for 20 plus years. Some have had a front row seat to witness Sam’s transformation into one of the greatest theologians leading in the children’s and family ministry space. Sam’s leadership skills are currently being invested at Redeemer Church, Utica, a mosaic faith community in upstate New York. Sam’s understanding and articulation comes from within the pages of the Gospel. These principles, practices and implications will be explained, highlighted and shared with you.

Melissa MacDonald

Melissa leads with determination and conviction. The thoughts and ideas she’s going to share will be solid and practical—you’ll be able to implement them whether you’re a rookie leader or a seasoned one. She’s an in-demand speaker, a ministry innovator, and the author of Missing: An Urgent Call for the Church to Rescue Kids. Melissa is passionate about the church and spends her time training, coaching, speaking, equipping, and consulting with ministries, churches, and denominations both in the US and abroad.

2019 Event Calendar

Washington, DC

October 10, 2011 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Randy Isola

Reston Bible Church

45650 Oakbrook Ct

Sterling, VA 20166

Charlotte, NC

October 15, 2011 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Aaron Cole

New City Church, Matthew West Campus

11011 Monroe Road

Matthews, NC 28105

Twin Cities, MN

October 17, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Randy Isola

Hope Church

7910 15th St N

Oakdale, MN 55128

Chicago, IL

October 24, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Courtney Wilson

The Compass

1551 E Hobson Rd

Naperville, IL 60540

Nashville, TN

October 29, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Randy Isola

Brentwood Baptist Church

7777 Concord Rd

Brentwood, TN 37027

Kansas City, MO

November 5, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Melissa MacDonald

Grace Church North Overland Park

10300 Antioch Rd

Overland Park, KS 66212

Denver, CO

November 7, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Courtney Wilson

South Suburban Christian Church

7275 S Broadway

Littleton, CO 80122

Orange County, CA

November 14, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Randy Isola

Rockharbor Church

345 Fischer Ave

Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Houston, TX

November 19, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Courtney Wilson

Sugar Land Baptist Church

16755 Southwest Freeway

Sugar Land, TX 77479

Dallas, TX

November 20, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Sam Luce

Prestonwood Baptist Church

6801 W Park Blvd

Plano, TX 75093

Washington, DC

October 10, 2011 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Randy Isola

Reston Bible Church

45650 Oakbrook Ct

Sterling, VA 20166

Charlotte, NC

October 15, 2011 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Aaron Cole

New City Church, Matthew West Campus

11011 Monroe Road

Matthews, NC 28105

Twin Cities, MN

October 17, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Randy Isola

Hope Church

7910 15th St N

Oakdale, MN 55128

Chicago, IL

October 24, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Courtney Wilson

The Compass

1551 E Hobson Rd

Naperville, IL 60540

Nashville, TN

October 29, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Randy Isola

Fellowship Bible Church, Brentwood Campus

1210 Franklin Road

Brentwood, TN 37027

Kansas City, MO

November 5, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Melissa MacDonald

Grace Church North Overland Park

10300 Antioch Rd

Overland Park, KS 66212

Denver, CO

November 7, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Courtney Wilson

South Suburban Christian Church

7275 S Broadway

Littleton, CO 80122

Orange County, CA

November 14, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Randy Isola

Rockharbor Church

345 Fischer Ave

Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Houston, TX

November 19, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Courtney Wilson

Sugar Land Baptist Church

16755 Southwest Freeway

Sugar Land, TX 77479

Dallas, TX

November 20, 2019 • 10am-12pm

Speaker: Sam Luce

Prestonwood Baptist Church

6801 W Park Blvd

Plano, TX 75093

Event Registration

Event Details

Only $10 per person
*After registering, you will receive an email with a payment link
Light breakfast included
Hear from ministry experts who understand you
Network with other ministry leaders in your area​​

Frequently Asked Questions

We design these events to primarily connect you with God and other likeminded people in ministry just like you. When you come, you’ll be treated to a light breakfast and have some time to meet some new friends and catch up with old friends, too. We’ll spend some time in worship led by a local leader. Then we’ll jump into the main topic, led by a vetted ministry leader. After time to hear and process at tables, we’ll pray and be sent back into our ministry fields.
Anyone with a heart for children’s or family ministry! We have many kids’ pastors that come on their own, and we have full staff and volunteer teams come out as well. Having someone else (whether staff or volunteer) that’s on your team to come and process the conversation can be extremely helpful to implementing what you learn back in your ministry!
It got a new coat of paint! From the beginning, we wanted our network events to be about more than just the events. Ministry Spark is the best place online to get the inspiration and encouragement you need to take your ministry to the next level. Because we’ve been doing the same thing at our Network events, we thought it only made sense to put them in step with one another.
This event hovers above the discussion of curriculum use and preference. The focus is on you as a leader.
We’re planning out the next round of cities already and would love to consider it! We also may have some surprises in the works for an online event in the future. We’ll have more info soon. In the meantime, sign up for Ministry Spark emails to stay in the loop for all things related!