History of Youth Ministry

Youth/Student Ministry at CGS through the Years

The Church of the Good Shepherd traces its beginnings back to 1985 and youth ministry started shortly after. By 1986 Daryll Arnold started attending and had stepped into the role as CGS’s first youth leader. The church was meeting at Ephesus Elementary School at the time and Elise and John Sanders (children of members John and Penny Sanders) were the very first youth in the church. Daryll eventually went on to become a PCA minister after seminary.

Jonathan Inman, Rob Stelling, as well as Marty and Angela Dupree were some of the volunteers who helped support the youth ministry for the next few years. It was in that time that the church transitioned to Githens Middle School for its worship services. From 1990 to 1991 the Church of the Good Shepherd hired the former area director for Durham-Chapel Hill Young Life, John Austin.

In 1992 CGS hired its first ordained youth pastor out of RTS Orlando, Jeff Hutchinson. He served the youth ministry of the church from 1992 to 1996. It was during this time that the church moved to its current location on Garrett Road. During the next few years both the youth ministry and the college ministry were served by Mark Whipple. He stepped in when the youth ministry was without a pastor.

From 1998 to 2003 the youth ministry was served by men like Chris Garrett, James Heinrich, and Freddie Woodard. The church then hired its “Famous” first female staff member for the youth ministry, Jennifer Hamilton. Jennifer was gifted and the Kingdom moved forward in great ways through her service to the church. By 2007 the church had completed its third phase of construction and the current sanctuary and youth facilities were completed.

In 2005 Nathan Scholl had taken over as the Pastor over youth ministries, a role he faithfully served in until 2012. Nathan continued on in ministry in Virginia and is still loved by many in the Durham area. We all remember that in the departure of Nathan, the legend of Nick Dantonio began. Nick was a great interim youth director and he helped the church and student ministries during a tough time of transition.

All these servants of the Lord brought the student ministry to where we are today and we are grateful for their tireless service to advance the Kingdom of God in the Durham–Chapel Hill area.