Seth Hendricks is an experienced Midwesterner, having lived in Nebraska, Kansas, Ohio, and now residing in Indiana where he is the Pastor of Youth Ministry & Congregational Life at Manchester Church of the Brethren. He is also a musician, composer of three National Youth Conference theme songs, and hopes to win his first Brethren Volunteer Service sponsored NYC ultimate frisbee tournament with his youth group.
Dr. Drew Hart is an assistant professor of theology at Messiah University and has 10 years of pastoral experience. He directs Messiah University’s Thriving Together: Congregations for Racial Justice program and co-hosts Inverse Podcast. He is the author of two books and can be found on Twitter and Instagram with the username @DruHart.
Naomi Kraenbring is an adjunct professor of religious studies at Elizabethtown College, where she loves working with undergraduate students to study many things, especially interfaith peacebuilding. Naomi is also a 2019 graduate of Bethany Theological Seminary and a current PhD student at the Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution at George Mason University.
Jody Romero and his wife Vanessa are church planters and have been leading Restoration Los Angeles in East Los Angeles, CA for nearly 12 years. They have a heart for the underserved and a passion to strengthen local churches. Jody and his wife also launched RiseUp Youth Conference, which has become a global movement to inspire young people to know Jesus and make Him known.
Chelsea Skillen & Tyler Goss
Chelsea Skillen and Tyler Goss are an energetic, insightful sibling team. They have been active in the church through summer camps, Peace Teams, Brethren Volunteer Service, and denominational agencies, and have spoken at many Church of the Brethren conferences. Chelsea runs a small production company with her husband in Petersberg, VA, and is excited about her newest project of writing her first book called How to Rock Your 20s. Tyler received his Master of Divinity and Master of Arts in Conflict Transformation degrees from Eastern Mennonite University, where he now works as the Assistant Director of Student Programs.
Dava Hensley graduated from Bethany Theological Seminary in 2009 with her Master of Divinity degree, and recently graduated from Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary in 2020 with a Doctorate of Ministry with an emphasis in preaching! She currently serves on the Church of the Brethren Mission and Ministry Board and on the Virlina District New Church Development Committee. When she has time, she loves to golf, read, cook, travel, and go to the movies.
Jeremy Ashworth is a husband, father, and the Pastor of Circle of Peace Church of the Brethren in Peoria, AZ, a Phoenix suburb. He likes tacos.
Osheta Moore loves people! She is a pastor and peacemaker who loves Jesus and is convinced God has a sense of humor. She is the author of two books: Shalom Sistas and Dear White Peacemakers. Osheta is an optimistic cookbook reader, a hopeless romantic, and a goofball with a little bit of sass. Follow Osheta on Instagram @oshetamoore for encouragement to practice everyday peacemaking and invitations for White Peacemakers on their journey toward anti-racism.
Rev. Dr. Rodger Nishioka is currently serving as the director of Adult Faith Formation at Village Presbyterian Church in Kansas. Before starting at Village Presbyterian, Rodger taught at Columbia Theological Seminary for 15 years. He also formerly served as the national coordinator for Youth and Young Adult Ministries for the Presbyterian Church and received his PhD in Social and Cultural Foundations from Georgia State University.
Youth Speech Contest Winners
Hannah Smith is a member of Brownsville (Md.) Church of the Brethren. Her favorite Bible verse is Joshua 1:9. She is currently a freshman at Elizabethtown College, where she is a dual major in Sociology and Japanese. She is an advocate for social issues and hopes to further her advocacy through her Sociology degree. In her free time, she enjoys reading, watching crime-related shows, and collecting squishmallows.
Anna Schweitzer is a junior in high school in Indiana, along with her twin brother, Ben. She from the Cedar Grove (Oh.) Church of the Brethren. She has been doing dance almost her whole life, as well as soccer. She is passionate about choir and was recently selected to be in the All-State Choir for Indiana. She has also been involved with her local civic theatre since she was eight. She is very excited to share her sermon at NYC and hopes that she leaves people with something inspiring.
Kara Bidgood Enders
Kara Bidgood Enders is a current junior in high school from Pennsylvania and is from the Ridgeway Community (Pa.) Church of the Brethren. She has attended National Junior High Conference, Immerse, Virtual Christian Citizenship Seminar, as well as many Annual Conferences. Outside of church, she is involved in many activities such as band and chorus related music groups, dance, Key Club, National Honors Society, and Student Government. She enjoys spending time with her friends and family and hopes to become an elementary school teacher.
Blind from birth, Ken sees and hears with heart and mind. He has inspired people through storytelling and music for four decades. Ken custom designs every musical moment of his performances with improvisation that defies description. He is a great friend of the Church of the Brethren and has reached audiences of up to 50,000 people in 49 states and more than 15 countries on four continents.