June 2024


God’s Disciple: Giving it Away

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:16-20.

Making disciples is about giving others the resources to discover and live for Christ. I know that may not be an intuitive response to Christ’s commission. We tend to think about going out and “evangelizing” people which we often think about going and getting people, getting them saved and recruit them to join a faith community.

But often this can have a feel of selling the gospel. We think very much in terms of marketing, convincing people of something we know they have not intuitive desire and finding away to get them to come to church and attend some Christian events.

Clearly, believers are “under authority” and Christ has called His people to make disciples. We are called to go into the world and make disciples. We are to be part of God’s mission to call a people out of the world and into the kingdom of His beloved Son. We take the initiative to go to them, share the gospel and bring them into a whole new life. Read More

Pastor Brad Little, Regional Executive Director

Venture Church Network Midwest 


Youth Ministry exists to disciple students to be sent out. Avoid turning discipleship into just keeping kids in youth group or modifying behavior. Disciple them to send them out.

Chuck Babbitt, Youth Pastor

Bloomer Baptist Church, Bloomer, WI

VCNMidwest Youth Ministries Director

Money Making Discipleship

Pastor, I don’t need to make the case with you that God calls us to make disciples. Your methods or your church’s programs might be different than mine and ours, but you are making disciples of Jesus Christ.  


As pastor’s we often have difficulty with how committed our people are to work and how uncommitted they are to our church ministry or discipleship programs. 

What if God is using their work as discipleship "program"? Read More

Pastor Rob Buhl

First Baptist Church, Whitehall, WI

Tuesday, June 25, 9:00am (CT)

with an alternative repeat session

Wednesday, June 26, 3:00pm (CT)



The Purpose of ENGAGE is to address gospel and missional critical issues and challenge our thinking related to pastoral ministry, leadership and the purpose of our churches.

The Goal of ENGAGE is to continue to become gospel-centered, grace driven, biblically anchored churches passionately committed to fulfill the mission of Christ. 

Camp Lebanon in Burtrum, MN has opened up three full time positions, and one part time position. To read more about each position, please click here.

Faith Baptist Church, Kenmare, ND is looking for a Senior Pastor. To read more about the position, please click here. If interested, please send your resume to

First Baptist Church

Jackson, MN

First Baptist Church, Jackson, MN is looking for a Family and Youth Pastor. To read more about the position, please click here

First Baptist Church, Pekin, IL is looking for a Next Gen/Family Pastor/Director. To read more about the position, please click here



First Baptist Church of Windom, MN is looking for a Senor Pastor. To read more about the position, please click here.

Venture Church Network is happy to announce a new partnership with Moody Bible Institute, which has been known for equipping people for effective ministry for more than 135 years. Through this educational partnership, congregational leaders and church members of VCN can enroll in all continuing education, undergraduate school, and seminary programs at a reduced cost. We believe this partnership will be another way in which we, as a network of churches, can assist in encouraging and opening doors for the next generation of church leaders.


Moody will offer awards of 30% for Venture Church Network staff and members. All cohorts/groups of students will receive an award of 30%.

Visit Website

Venture Church Network has had a special and long-term relationship with Western Seminary for over 75 years. The heart of our partnership has continued to further a common purpose of providing theological education and advanced training for training pastors, counselors and related ministry leaders (whether vocational, bi-vocational, or avocational). Western’s vision is to be an educational community that promotes gospel-centered transformation in every aspect of a student’s life and work. Western Seminary serves as a catalyst and resource for spiritual transformation by working with and for the church to equip men and women for strategic ministry roles.

Along with its in-person offerings through its Portland, OR campus, Western also offers global distance learning, and in alignment with their mission “with and for the church,” they have partnered with churches around the nation to offer local cohorts. Cohorts allow a small group of students, often fellow ministry leaders, to journey through their program together from start to finish.

Students who are not only on staff, but active members of a VCN church are eligible for a generous grant of 25% reduction in tuition. Contact the Financial Aid Office for details. If you are considering a master’s or doctoral program, we strongly encourage you to consider Western Seminary.

Visit Website

Venture Church Network is excited to announce a new partnership between VCN and Denver Seminary. Founded in 1950 by the Conservative Baptist Association (Now VCN), the school was initially called the Conservative Baptist Theological Seminary before changing its name to Denver Conservative Baptist Seminary in 1982. In 1988, it changed its name to Denver Seminary, reflecting its appeal to students from a wide variety of denominations and its embrace of a nondenominational identity. The school is based in Littleton, Colo. Denver Seminary identifies as an “evangelical” school and as multi denominational, enrolling 900 students from more than 50 denominations. A grant of 25% reduction in tuition costs are available for VCN members. This includes master's and doctoral-level courses.

Visit Website

Corban University is a liberal arts university whose mission is to educate Christians who will make a difference in the world for Jesus Christ!

Venture Church Network has partnered with Corban University to offer employees of a VCN church a 20% graduate tuition discount.

Visit  Website

Cedarville University, an exceptional Christian university is located in southwest Ohio. As one of the top Christian colleges in the Midwest, Cedarville University attracts 5,082 undergraduate, graduate, and dual enrolled high school students to more than 175 areas of study.

Venture Church Network has partnered with Cedarville University to offer employees and members of a VCN church a 15% graduate tuition discount.

Visit Website

VCN is excited to offer a specialized retirement plan option through GuideStone to pastors and staff of churches in the Venture Church Network family. Read More

Ministry-focused conversations, financial experience

At Christian Investors Financial we love hearing stories from churches and individuals, and sharing a few of our own. Communication is at the heart of all we do in financial services. Christian Investors Financial is providing faith-based financial solutions that serve Kingdom expansion. Learn more about CIF by visiting our website.

9 Tips for Planning a Safe VBS

Is your church ready for Vacation Bible School? Has your children’s ministry team started preparing? If you haven’t thought about it yet this year, consider this your warning: it’s time to start planning. ChurchLaw&Tax

Church Health Consultant

Brian A. Thorstad

Need a Church Health Consultant? Brian’s consulting, coaching, training, writing, preaching and teaching are all about HELPING CHURCHES THRIVE.

My ministry today is all about helping churches thrive. I love the Lord of the Church and I love His churches. You can find out why by visiting the Brian’s Story page. I believe that because of the powerful presence of Christ with His churches that every church can be a great church. I would be honored to be able to help your congregation. With today’s technology, I’m available to help any English-speaking

pastor and any congregation.

Visit Website

An Israel Trip will be offered March 2-13, 2025

(Flying out of ORD Chicago).

Cost: $4959.00

(Deposits due before Oct. 1, 2024 w/ final payment by Dec. 1, 2024)

Price does not include travel to ORD, in-country lunches, souvenirs, passport fees, travel insurance, or other personal expenses.

If you or anyone you know is interested, please feel free to contact Pastor Andrew Powell at for more information.  

An Invitation from Andrew Powell

Venture Church Network Midwest 


Central Illinois

No meetings in June or July. The next meeting will be held on August 21.

Andrew Powell, Grace Church, Mahomet, IL



Tuesday, June 18, 12:00pm (CT)

Location: Creekside Bible Church,

Marion, IA

Jay Jentink, Calvary Baptist Church, Cedar Rapids, IA



Thursday, June 20, 2:00pm (ET)

Meeting by Zoom

Allen Grover, Ganson Street Baptist Church, Jackson, MI


Central Minnesota

Monday, June 17, 10:00am (CT)

Leader: Brad Little

Location - River of Life Church, Hastings, MN

Contact: Dan Vesta


Southern Minnesota

To Be Determined

Jackson, MN

Walt Moser, First Baptist Church, Luverne, MN



Thursday, June 20, 11:00am (CT)

Pizza Ranch - Eau Claire

Rob Buhl, First Baptist Church

Whitehall, WI


VCNMidwest Youth Pastor Collaboration

Monday, June 17, 10:00am (CT)

Meeting by Zoom

Chuck Babbitt, Bloomer Baptist Church, Bloomer, WI


To Be Decided

Northern Minnesota/North Dakota


Venture Church Network Midwest

1410 44th Street, Marion, IA 52302

Dr. Brad Little

Regional Executive Director


Administrative Office

Gina Perry, Administrative Assistant


All articles and submissions are the view of the individual writer and are not necessarily the official position of Venture Church Network Midwest.