Summer Recap

This Summer at St. Philip’s Church was FULL – full of laughs, crazy fun, worship and dancing, learning about Jesus, traveling, sunshine, and friendships. From Kidz Kamp, to the Dominican Republic, to High School Surf City, and then Middle School Surf City, we saw the Lord move in amazing ways.

The 2018 school year is upon us and we are so pumped to start ACTS & Hangin’ In on September 5th and 6th!

See you all then!

Explicit Truth: The Silver Ring Thing

Thanks so much to the Silver Ring Thing Tour Team and our volunteers that came out to make the event possible for youth in our community!

We heard testimonies about what it looks like to live out God’s design for relationships and sex. Many students who attended ended up making a commitment to purity, a virtue that enables them to lean on Christ and lean into the abundant life that He promises them through saving themselves for His best!

Laurelville Recap 2017

Last weekend, we went up to Laurelville and had a fabulous weekend with 80 students, leaders, and work crew from St. Philip’s! It was an amazing weekend… filled with laughter, fun, mud, and most importantly, learning more about what it means to follow the Lord and leaning into what He has for us.

Jason Wavle was the speaker for the weekend. He currently serves as the Worship Director and Middle School Ministry Director and Pleasant Hills Community Presbyterian Church and was formerly on staff with the Pittsburgh Kids Foundation. His message of the Gospel and story of the Prodigal Son pierced a lot of students heart’s throughout club and small group time.

Overall, we left Laurelville with fuller hearts than we came with. We bonded as a group, explored what it looks like to follow Jesus, and renewed our love for just how good the good news is.

Thank you, Pittsburgh Kids Foundation and those of you who support our student ministry program at St. Philip’s Church. I didn’t grow up with a youth program like ours, here at St. Philip’s; I am thankful for how the Lord has pursued me and used my experiences to shape what my Christian walk looks like, but I always say that if I would have had older teenagers and adults loving me like our leaders love our students, my world would have been astronomically transformed. I, for one, am so thankful for that sort of astronomical transformation that only the Good News can bring.

Thank you, Jesus, for transforming the lives of our students.

-Sammie Franks, Volunteer @ STP Student Ministries

Build My Life

Thursday night, we gathered and worshipped and talked about what Jesus has done for us. Not only what He has done for us, but what that means for us as we live our daily lives. Although because of time constraints we only has three minutes to hear a message, Kory spent that time telling us what he would spend the last three minutes of his life telling someone. Out of all the things he could have picked, he picked the Gospel. Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. There isn’t another.

Something that I have spent my time pondering for the past few weeks based on the following question: “What is your Christian life like? What is the shape of your Gospel, your faith? In the end, it will all depend on what you think God is like. Who God is drives everything. So, what is the human problem? Is it merely the we have started from a moral code? Or is it something worse: that we have strayed from him? What is salvation? Is it merely that we are brought back as law-abiding citizens? Or is it something better: that we are brought back as beloved children? What is the Christian life about? Mere behavior? Or something deeper: enjoying God? And then there’s what our churches are like, our relationships, our mission: all are molded in the deepest way by what we think of God.”

I encourage you all to think about that question, and as you do so, ask the Lord to remind you of the lyrics from Build My Life.

Holy, there is no one like You, there is none beside You

Open up my eyes in Wonder, and 

Show me who You are and fill me with Your heart

And lead me in your love to those around me 

I will build my life upon your Love, it is a firm foundation

I will put my trust in You alone, and I will not be shaken

Prayer requests: Laurelville is a month away for STP! We are taking many middle school students with us to experience a weekend full of fun, mud, games, and learning the Gospel through intentional relationships and teachings. If you’d like to support our student ministry, please contact me for more details on how to do so. We are always looking for prayer partners, adult leaders, and financial supporters to help us with programming. We truly believe the God will send us as many students as we can provide for. Check out our Harvest Moon Race on the Upcoming Trips page and run to support our ministry!

My contact info is listed below for parents or other inquiries. To God be the glory!

-Sammie Franks – Adult Volunteer –

Meet KG

What do you get when you mix a love for the Ninja Turtles, a passion for pursuing the Kingdom of God, and a tenacity for ping pong? Apparently a youth pastor.

Kory was always told by his mother that he is a “jack of all trades, master of none” and that is a really cool thing when it comes to hanging out with students. He enjoys sports, music, entertainment, Star Wars, and pizza. And oddly enough so do a lot of students.

Kory grew up in Moon, and St. Philip’s was his family’s home church. He was mentored here, and come to own his faith here. It is crazy how things work out. Kory graduated from Point Park Conservatory with a degree in Theatre with a concentration in Music and spent three years pursuing acting in NYC. Don’t judge when you see him wearing a Yankees ball cap. During that time he was working back in Pittsburgh with the Pittsburgh Kids Foundation doing program for Surf City and Laurelville, large outreach retreats.

In 2012 Kory was at Laurelville and felt the Holy Spirit speak to him in the strongest, most profound voice he had heard up to that point. He was supposed to stay in Pittsburgh and work full time in youth ministry, even though he had plans to head back to NYC. What looked like one of the harder decisions of his life, a decision that meant laying down what he thought his life was going to look like, has been one of the greatest blessings he has ever received.

Kory wants to see the Kingdom of Heaven break out and grow in an incredible and huge way here in Pittsburgh. He has a burning passion to see students impact their culture for Christ. He wants to be an instrument for God, a mouthpiece that speaks His truths and shares His love and grace. He wants to lead people to the cross and watch their lives change as Jesus Christ calls them into new life. He wants to empower students in a way that they understand the strength that the Holy Spirit ignites in them, and that they can change the world.