Youth Ministry Leadership Team

Senior High Youth Ministry Team

Nathaniel Gutierrez

Name: Nathaniel Gutiérrez

What should we call you? “Pastor Gutiérrez” or “PG.”

What gifts/experience/etc. do you bring to the youth ministry team?

I am extremely talented….at games. I remain the reigning champion of Sling Puck, and many other games that don’t matter. I play guitar, I preach and teach and love bringing people together to have a good time.

I have experience working with youth through Campus Life when I worked for Youth for Christ, then I served with Mission to the World as a church planter and pastor in Escondido, CA, in Bogota, Colombia and in Arequipa, Peru from 2006-2019.

Why do you want to work with the youth ministry?

I grew up as a missionary kid, and loved working with youth in the church even when I was a teenager. I remember using my own money to buy books with youth group games so we could have the best games at youth group. I love having fun, but more than anything I love to help people find true joy in Jesus.

What do you like to do for fun?

Youth Group of course! And, I also love, soccer, volleyball, and photography. I enjoy spending time with my family, riding bikes or taking walks at Point Ruston, Point Defiance and traveling to new places.

What part of the Bible do you go to most often?

I find myself going back to the gospels over and over again. I love how Jesus’ teaching is so grounded in every day examples. I love that he calls us to profound holiness, and also demonstrates tender mercy. I love to learn what he was like through his conversations and actions and to see his love for us and for his Father’s glory.

Michael Funches

Name: Michael Funches

What should we call you? “Mr. Funches”

What gifts/experience/etc do you bring to the youth ministry team? I bring four years of discipleship training in college, countless cross cultural experiences and 22 years of Army experience in leading organizations and training people to accomplish more than they ever believed possible. I also have four children in the age range so I haven’t totally lost touch with the unique features of this phase in life.

Why do you want to work with the youth ministry? I like to see young people grow and develop. I hope to inspire a passion for honoring Christ in our daily lives.

What do you like to do for fun? How much time do you have? I live for fun. I like days at the lake, I like hiking, camping, fishing, boating, hunting, skiing, travel, beaches, mountains, sunrises, playing with my German Shepherd, playing games with the family, watching football, home renovation projects, boat projects, carving, building furniture, reading, and smoking cigars with friends.

What part of the Bible do you go to most often? The Epistles. I constantly need to be reminded that we are saved by grace.

Lindsay Funches

Name: Lindsay Funches

What should we call you? “Mrs. Funches”

What gifts/experience/etc do you bring to the youth ministry team?

Throughout my adult life, I have worked with children or young adults in some teaching or ministry capacity, and I have a master’s degree in Biblical Studies from Reformed Theological Seminary.  A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, I could actually read Hebrew! Currently, I am a middle school English teacher at Heritage Christian School and the parent of four outstanding teenagers.

Why do you want to work with the youth ministry?

Working with youth brings me great joy.  First, students often make me laugh, and I love their ingenuity and quick wit.  Second, I hope to be used to help train up youth in the way they should go, helping them see who God is, and who He has made them to be.

What do you like to do for fun?

In my free time, I enjoy running, reading, hanging out with my family, and playing with my German Shephard, Sasha.  I especially love the game Bananagrams, and I am always up for a game of volleyball.  (So is Mr. Funches. 

What part of the Bible do you go to most often?

In Scripture, I am often drawn to the Psalms as it is there that I see that God wants His people to come to Him with all their joys and all their pain.

Jonathan Pfefferle

Name: Jonathan Pfefferle

What should we call you? Jonathan/Mr. Pfefferle depending on preference.

What gifts/experience/etc. do you bring to the youth ministry team?

I’m a product of Faith’s youth group and I’m closer in age to the current crop than the rest of the senior high team. I like to think that gives me a perspective the others may lack. Primarily though I bring a warm, semi-able body to take care of whatever menial tasks are tying down more valuable hands.

Why do you want to work with the youth ministry?

I had the time and I knew PG was wanting for helpers.

What do you like to do for fun?

Work out and practice Kendo on the physical side, reading and getting into needlessly long-winded arguments about how much of a dumpster fire the space shuttle was on the more intellectual end.

What part of the Bible do you go to most often?

I’ve been following the church mens’ reading plan recently. I appreciate simply getting a text and wrestling with what it has to say, even if it’s not what I want to hear.

Emma St. John

Name: Emma St John

What should we call you? Emma

What gifts/experience/etc. do you bring to the youth ministry team?

Like a couple others on the youth ministry team, I am also a product of this youth group. My senior year of high school, I was part of student leadership and helped lead one of the Wednesday night small groups with another peer. After graduating from Covenant College, I helped lead a small group/ Bible study with several of the high school girls for about 6 months. I’ve also had the privilege of chaperoning numerous snow retreats over the past several years and helped lead cabin discussions and prayer time. I enjoy creating memories and meaningful experiences for others, and love to help plan parties and events, so I love helping with that side of things. I also love to bake and make desserts for people, so when my schedule allows you may just find some home baked goodies at the snack table.

Why do you want to work with the youth ministry?

For the last 10 years or so I’ve worked with the youth group in some capacity… be it weekly Bible studies for a short time right out of college, or once a year volunteering for snow retreat. I’ve always enjoyed those experiences and would come back from them wishing I was more involved somehow, but then life always seemed to get busy, and I never really perused that. Thankfully PG persisted and asked me again, and unbeknownst to him, I’d been prayerfully considering how to get more involved, and just needed that extra nudge. I really love this ministry, and how I’ve been able to watch it grow over the years. I think seeking and making connections with the young adults in our community is so important, and I’m excited to be part of that work!

What do you like to do for fun?

I love to travel, thrift, bake, cook, and spend time with my nephew and nieces. I also dabble in choreography for my elementary school’s musicals, which is more challenging than you would think, but also so much fun!

What part of the Bible do you go to most often?

I love Psalms, and I’ve also always enjoyed revisiting the book of Ruth and seeing God’s faithfulness through that story. 

Junior High Youth Ministry Team

Pedro Moura

Name: Pedro Henrique Areco Gomes Moura

What should we call you? Mr. Moura
What gifts/experience/etc. do you bring to the youth ministry team?

⁃ I’m originally from Brazil and at our church back there I taught Sunday School and also led, alongside my wife, a bible study group for teenagers that dealt with the different issues our culture puts forward to Christians. As a former atheist, I think I can bring an unique perspective on how to dialogue with unbelievers, and also how we can deal with the “tough questions” and even doubts that arise during our spiritual life. 
Why do you want to work with the youth ministry?
⁃ Youths are in an interesting phase of their lives where their starting to “ask their own questions” and “form their own opinions”, so to speak. Being able to engage and help them think through these different matters from a biblical worldview is something that I love to do, and I always learn a lot from them! 
What do you like to do for fun?
⁃ I like to play chess, read, go on walks or hikes in parks or by the waterfront, and spend time with friends (if good food is involved, even better).
What part of the Bible do you go to most often?
⁃ I would say 2 Timothy because it was one of the first books I studied at a retreat after becoming a Christian, and that was really impactful. “… Yet this is no cause for shame, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until that day.” (2 Timothy 1:12 NIV)

Marina Moura

Name: Marina Marconi dos Santos Moura (Marina/Mari/Má).

What would you like us to call you? Mrs. Moura

What gifts/experience/etc. do you bring to the youth ministry team?
⁃ I worked for many years in children’s ministry, when I entered college, I participated in a youth evangelism group. We did evangelistic Bible studies and other actions at the university. I have also participated in some missionary trips to different parts of Brazil and once to Bolivia. It is easy for me to notice when someone is not feeling well, and I am very willing to help with whatever is needed.
Why do you want to work with the youth ministry?
⁃ Because it’s motivating to see the growth and maturation we go through during this phase. It’s contagious to be among people with so much energy and curiosity. I’m also very happy to contribute to their Christian journey.
What do you like to do for fun?
⁃ I enjoy being in nature (parks, hikes, beaches), dancing, reading and chatting with my friends.
What part of the Bible do you go to most often?
⁃ My favorite verses are:
⁃ “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12 NIV) Because it reminds me to love those who are not yet of Christ, to look to God for strength and wisdom to act.

⁃ “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” (Colossians 3:15-17 NIV) Because it is a summary of how we, disciples of Christ, must live and live with our brothers.

Erika Skrivan

Name: Erika Skrivan

What should we call you? Mrs. Skrivan 

What gifts/experience/etc. do you bring to the youth ministry team?

I have worked in ministry most of my life in one way or another, VBS, Sunday School, AWANA’s as well as Youth Group. Being a Mom of a teenager and a few soon to be teens doesn’t hurt!

Why do you want to work with the youth ministry?

One of the difficult truths of this time in history is how much worldly information is pouring into our kids. So many pressures that generations before never even could have imagined. I want to show how wonderful it is to live in God’s law, not in a way that hammers down all the rules and focuses on all that Christians “can’t do” but in God’s amazing love and design and the beauty of following Christ. It’s a joy to be a voice in helping this generation navigate a world that is against them, just for bearing the name Christian. There are times in my life I can see where God used an older more experienced Christian woman to walk with me, I can think of a handful of them and I’m so thankful they spoke into my life and heart at a formative age. 

What do you like to do for fun?

I love to garden, and mow the lawn, we enjoy a good game night in our house, I’m the house champ in Speed and Dutch Blitz. I like hiking and being outside whenever I can! I also really like to color, draw and paint, but don’t have lots of time these days to do that! 

What part of the Bible do you go to most often?

James is my favorite, probably just the most relatable to me, though the older I get the more and more I appreciate the Psalms, as well as learning to lament with Lamentations.