Steve Collins is the Founder and Executive Director of Adults Protecting Children, which trains adults in how to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to child sexual abuse. Steve has comprehensive experience training adults and working with organizations in how to prevent the sexual abuse of children. His experience includes developing and implementing child protection policies. He has expertise in how communities can create child protection initiatives that can train enough adults in the community so the culture of the community is changed and becomes a safer place to raise children.
Stephen Estock is Coordinator for the PCA Committee on Discipleship Ministries (CDM). A former USAF officer, he has been in pastoral ministry for 20 years, serving churches in Montgomery, AL and St. Louis, MO. Stephen has also been an adjunct professor at Birmingham Theological and Covenant Theological Seminaries. His Ph.D. is in education, with an emphasis on competency-based learning and leadership training. He and his wife, Susan, have three children and live in Atlanta, GA.
Tim Frost has been on staff at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Harrisonburg, VA since 2007, first as the Youth Pastor and now as the Executive Pastor. He was born in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, moved to the Philadelphia area in fifth grade, and made his way to Harrisonburg as a freshman at JMU in 1996. After graduation, he interned with the Cov-Pres youth ministry and a few years later attended Covenant Theological Seminary before moving back to join the Cov-Pres staff. He loves learning new things, caring for the church, and the Philadelphia Eagles (but don’t hold that against him). He and his wife, Jonelle, were married in 2008 and have two children.
Kristen Harnly received a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy from Medical College of Georgia (now Georgia Regents University). After moving to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania she worked as an occupational therapist at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and in early intervention. Kristen’s interest in disability ministry began as she served families with young children in the nursery of Tenth Presbyterian. In 2007, she began Tenth’s special needs ministry and served there for nine years. In 2012, Kristen joined Engaging Disability’s team of volunteer Ministry Facilitators. Drawing on her experience there and at the congregational level, Kristen joined the staff of Engaging Disability With The Gospel in 2016 as Associate Director, Congregational Ministry. Kristen and her husband, Keith, have two children and live in Havertown, a suburb of Philadelphia.
Sandy Hernandez began her journey sharing the gospel with children over 35 years ago in Mexico, where she and her husband, Jacinto, served in a ministry devoted to winning non-churched children to Christ and training others to do the same. Today, they serve in the Spanish speaking congregation, Alianza, at Covenant Presbyterian Church, and have served for the last 18 years. Sandy is an Associate Director at Alianza/Covenant Presbyterian Church, leading the After School Program, which has 70 young participants from the church’s neighborhood. Sandy is mom to two daughters and has degrees in Social Work and Spanish.
Sue Jakes is mother of four, grandmother of 11, and lives in Atlanta, GA where she serves as Children’s Ministry Coordinator for the PCA’s Committee on Discipleship Ministries. She has served as director of children’s ministry at Covenant PCA in Fayetteville, GA and is now serving as children’s director at Westminster PCA in Atlanta. She has been teaching children, youth, and women’s groups in the church for over thirty-five years. Sue is co‑author of “Heart of the Home”, a Bible Study ministry for moms and Teach Me To Worship, CDM’s children’s church online curriculum.
John Kidd has a passion for sharing the gospel with the next generation, and has been a Youth Pastor since the end of 2015. Prior to working with youth John worked in college campus ministry with Cru for 15 years. He and his wife, Kelly, have two daughters, Elizabeth (14) and Rachel (10). John is driven by the desire to help young people grasp the gospel and its comprehensive implications for all areas of life.
Burress McCombe loves living in the Shenandoah Valley and has had the privilege of serving at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Harrisonburg, VA as the Pastor of Worship for the past thirteen years. Burress also takes great joy in being a husband and a dad. He cares deeply for the church and desires to be a part of aiding the church in singing rich, biblically sound theology. He enjoys playing guitar, running, laughing and being bald.
Peyton Miller has an undergraduate degree in Parks and Recreation Management and a master’s in special education as well as decades of practical experience designing and implementing activities for children and youth. She has used her education and experience to craft specific guidelines and practices to create activities that provide deeper connections in relationships with God and others.
J.D Patton is a Ruling Elder at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Harrisonburg, VA. He has been involved in various aspects of children’s ministry at Covenant for the past 29 years. One of the major highlights of J.D.’s month is when he gets to teach the lesson for children’s church. He and his wife, Teresa, have four grown children.
Sarah Pruett leads the Through the Roof disability ministry at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Harrisonburg, VA. She has experience with disability both professionally and personally. As an occupational therapist for 11 years she has spent most of her practice in rehabilitation settings and currently runs a non-profit with her husband, Scott, to design universally accessible homes. Scott uses a wheelchair from a spinal cord injury (20+ years) and they have a 2-year-old daughter. Her passion to serve families affected by disability at Covenant and the broader community has been shaped by participating in Family Retreats and Wounded Warrior Getaways through the organization Joni and Friends. She enjoys planning inclusive opportunities for people to feel loved and giving parents opportunities for respite and support.
Todd Pruitt has been the Lead Pastor of Covenant Presbyterian Church in Harrisonburg, VA since 2013. Originally from Houston, Texas, Todd was raised and educated as a Southern Baptist. He is a graduate of Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City. Over a period of years, he came to embrace the Reformed faith and has been a happy Presbyterian ever since. In his free time Todd is a cohost of the Mortification of Spin podcast and blog. Since 1990 Todd has been married to Karen and they have three children. They love living in the Shenandoah Valley and are grateful to call Covenant Presbyterian Church their home.
Aaron Roberts joined the staff of Covenant Presbyterian Church in Harrisonburg, VA in 2016. he As the pastor of Adult Discipleship, he thoughtfully develops a scope and sequence for the adult Sunday school programs and oversees he home group ministry of Covenant. Born and raised in West Boylston, Massachusetts, he made his way to Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA. After Dickinson College, he attended Westminster Theological Seminary outside Philadelphia. Aaron loves to play the guitar, talk theology, and spend time with friends. He and his wife, Jacey, were married in 2010 and have four children whom he leads in family worship.
Dr. Ken Scheel is a professional toy inventor and the founder and Chief Education Officer of KEVA Planks (a unique building block). Ken’s workshops are always playful, practical, and easy to implement, and create compelling interactive experiences for people of all ages and all skill levels. He has provided creative KEVA experiences for DreamWorks Animation and LinkedIn and his popular KEVA planks museum exhibits are displayed at over twenty leading science centers and children’s museums. Ken uses his unique professional background to make family devotions, Sunday School and Children’s church more engaging, powerful and fun for both teachers and students.
B.A. Snider has more than 20 years’ experience as a children’s director in PCA churches ranging in size from 200 to 4,000 but finds her passion is the same no matter how many children she’s serving. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Tennessee and taught college until the Lord called her to seminary and full-time ministry. She graduated with a master’s degree in Christian Education from Columbia International University. Speaking at conferences, consulting with leadership, and training teachers brought her to Great Commission Publications in 2014 as the Children’s Ministry Consultant and Marketing Director.
Lisa Updike has been on staff since 2013. Originally from Northern Virginia, she attended JMU where she received a Bachelor of Music Education. Her extensive ministry experience includes homeschooling, teaching at Grace Christian School, consulting with teachers at Blue Ridge Christian School, and working as a learning disabilities therapist. She also has spearheaded children’s programs in several churches and is currently serving on the CDM Children’s Ministry Team. She takes great delight in seeing children grow in their knowledge and love of their Savior, Jesus. She and her husband, Kevin, have been married since 1989 and are blessed with 4 children.
Kris Zwanzig has been a member of Covenant Presbyterian Church, in Harrisonburg VA for 35 years and has been involved in Children’s ministry for all 35 years. She has been the nursery coordinator at Cov-Pres for 6 years. Kris is mom to five children, seven grandchildren, and has been married to her husband, Kevin, for 33 years. She has a heart for children and loves sharing the gospel with little ones. She enjoys reading and exploring the children’s section of a bookstore.
Ms. Sarah began connecting with the community through a local mission trip of Covenant Presbyterian Church 11 years ago. She fell in love with the children of the community and decided to move into a neighborhood near the church to connect further with our refugee and immigrant neighbors. She leads a weekly Kids’ Club in the neighborhood and connects the kids to Sunday morning church. Sarah is on staff with Mission to North America (MNA-PCA).
Conference Schedule: Harrisonburg, VA
Friday, November 13
3:00-6:00 pm – ESTABLISHED: Children’s Ministry 101 – Sue Jakes and Lisa Updike
Spend the afternoon reviewing the new book by this title, unpacking all the basics of beginning, developing and sustaining ministry to children in your local congregation.
3:00-6:00 pm – Individual Appointments Register for a one-hour appointment with:
- Kristen Harnly – Engaging Disability With The Gospel
- Stephen Estock – CDM Coordinator
- B.A. Snider – Great Commission Publications
- Steve Collins — Adults Protecting Children
Browse Bookstore and Exhibits
6:30-7:15 pm – Dinner
7:30-8:30 pm – Opening Session
“Psalm 78 – The Great Value of Ministry to Children” – Todd Pruitt, Lead Pastor at Covenant Presbyterian Church
8:30-9:30 pm – Dessert Social – Visit Exhibits and Bookstore
Saturday, November 14
8:00-8:30 am – Continental Breakfast
8:30-9:30 am – Introductions, Instructions and A Charge for the Day
“Psalm 78: The Great Hope that is Ours” – Sue Jakes, CDM’s Children’s Ministry Coordinator
9:40-10:40 am – Workshop Session #1
10:40-11:00 am – Break
11:00-Noon – Workshop Session #2
Noon – Lunch and Panel Discussion
1:15-2:15 pm – Workshop Session #3
2:30-3:00 pm – Closing Session
“Psalm 78: Established – THE Covenant Promise” – Dr. Stephen Estock, CDM’s Coordinator of Discipleship Ministries