Featured Artists

In alphabetical order:

462425_602241309786464_1560719283_oSpeaking & Performing! Alma, musician. In a culture that encourages us to airbrush our lives with Instagram filters and clever status updates, the emerging voice of pop/soul artist Alma is challenging this generation to pause and self-reflect. For her, understanding and conquering problems begins with asking “why?” and ultimately “what next?” Alma aims to kickstart this dialogue through her songwriting, most often by being upfront about her own shortcomings.

Follow her on Facebook & Twitter.


PaulBennett-200x300Speaking! Paul Bennett, author of A Fall of Sparrows (website), grew up in Bainbridge, Georgia and is a lifelong student of American history, especially the Civil War and the hardships associated with that tragic period. Having been raised on stories of American heroes, his greatest honor has been the opportunity to write about those heroes who loved their neighbors as themselves.

Paul attended Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia and there met his wonderful wife, Jenice. He currently lives in Forest, Virginia where he practices Internal Medicine. He has a special interest in black powder firearms, but the most enjoyable times during the day are always spent with his wife and their two sons James and Daniel. Follow him on Twitter &  Facebook.

 


Cover Art-1Performing! Brendan Brooks was born in 1985 in a small rural town of Wonewoc Wisconsin.  Raised in the church and knowing God, Brendan first picked up a guitar at age 15. Determined and self-taught, his youth pastor encouraged him to start a music program within the youth group at Faith Evangelical Free Church in Sparta Wisconsin and still today is active in leading and worshiping with the youth. In the fall of 2010 Brendan took over the music program at Valton Wesleyan Church near Wonewoc Wisconsin where he currently is serving. In the fall of 2013 God started opening doors and Brendan started a solo career. The album titled Broken was created and was released in the spring of 2016. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.


bernardbull2-254x300Speaking! Bernard D. Bull, PhD is Assistant Vice President of Academics and Associate Professor of Education at Concordia University Wisconsin. He is the author of Missional Moonshots: Insight and Inspiration in Educational Innovation (website), editor of The Pedagogy of Faith, and author of the forthcoming book, What Really Matters? Critical Issues in Contemporary Education. In addition to blogging on topics related to educational innovation at Etale.org, he has written for a variety of publications including The Homeschool Handbook, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and Issues in Christian Education. Bernard is an educational consultant and keynote speaker whose work takes him around the United States, and to places like Hong Kong, Vietnam, Australia, Slovkia, and Italy. Follow him on Twitter.

 


10649835_949189351764285_3147583835726124020_nSpeaking & Performing! Alyssa Catlin, classical guitarist. Facebook Alyssa’s past accomplishments include being featured on the NPR show, “From the Top,” placing first at the American String Teacher’s Association Competition, participating in master classes with many incredible musicians in the classical guitar world such as Pepe Romero, Ana Vidovic, Jason Vieaux, Scott Tenant, William Kanengiser, Martha Masters, Jorge Morel, and Manuel Barrueco, winning first place at the Mid-America Guitar Camp competition, featuring in the Fingerstyle Guitar Magazine, and placing in several other local and national contests.

She studied with the renowned guitarist, John McClellan, at Webster University, where she obtained her degree in classical guitar performance. Follow her on Facebook.


7795837Speaking! Robert Cely, author of Beyond the Steel Wall (website), acquired a degree in history at the University of South Carolina and a a Masters of Divinity at Union Seminary. Today he lives a mild-mannered life with his wife, three sons, and daughter in West Columbia, SC, working as a Chaplain. He writes part time and enjoys college football and making beer.

 

 

 


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Leading a Workshop! For sixteen years, Don Charnon is a member of Covenant Players, an international drama company. He has worked in 12 countries, serviced as an actor, director, and regional office supervisor.  The three hour workshop will cover body control, body movement, projection, diction, eye-to-eye contact, characterization, and ‘owning your lines.’ His desire is to pass on the skills of drama by doing workshops for small groups.

 

 


468519_647414838606745_1825489160_oSpeaking! Joseph Courtemanche, author of Assault on Saint Agnes (website), is a former Police Officer and certified Middle East, North Africa analyst. He is a distinguished veteran of the Naval Security Group of the United States Navy and is an Arabic linguist with training at The University of Minnesota and the Defense Language Institute (Honors Graduate.) His linguistic and intelligence experience include multiple deployments to surface, submarine, and land based intelligence collection platforms. Joseph holds several military awards including two flag letters of commendation for his work in providing real-time intelligence support to commanders in the field. His experience provides the background that’s crucial to his writing in the Thriller genre. He is a graduate of The University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and holds degrees from two other colleges. He holds the Expert Pistol Marksman medal, Good Conduct medal, Sea Service ribbon, and Meritorious Unit Citation from the United States Navy and is a Life Member of the NRA.

Joseph writes his novels from a Christian perspective with the gritty realism that modern readers demand. His recently published Assault on Saint Agnes won the 2015 American Christian Fiction Writers Genesis award for best unpublished novel in the mystery/suspense/thriller category, Second Place in the prestigious Athanatos Christian Ministries 2013 Christian Novel Contest, and was a 2013 Final Five Finalist in the Christian Writers Guild’s Operation First Novel. Follow him on Facebook & Twitter.


Derek-ElkinsSpeaking! Derek Elkins, author of Life Unworthy of Life (website), was born in Independence, Missouri, home of Harry Truman and Mr. and Mrs. Elkins.  He still lives in the area with his lovely wife Wendi and five children.  When he’s not writing novels, short stories, screen plays and stage plays, he enjoys a good nap.

Derek is the first place winner of the Athanatos Christian Ministries 2012 Novel Contest for his book “Life Unworthy of Life”.  ACM subsequently published this book. Follow him on Twitter.

 


hillary-morgan-ferrer-headshotSpeaking! Hillary Morgan Ferrer (@MamaBrAplgtics) was introduced to apologetics at age twelve and has been vocal about its importance in grounding her faith through many trials. Her life has been a dance between three intellectual passions: art, science, and apologetics. Upon graduating from Texas Christian University in 2001 with a Bachelor of Science in Film, she furthered her education at both Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara California and Art Center College of Design in Pasadena California. She was a professional photographer for 5 years in both California and Texas before returning to the sciences. She is active in the arts, intelligent design, and apologetics communities. She has taught college prep Biology and Chemistry for five years, as well as Photoshop and photography. She is now pursuing two Masters degrees: Biology (Clemson University) and Apologetics (Biola University). She is passionate about helping individuals diagnose and address the causes of their doubt, as well as turning the tide in the youth exodus.

Hillary serves in leadership with Ratio Christi Boosters spearheading the Youth Exodus Project (YEP) along with Julie Loos and Ryan Huxley. In cooperation with YEP, Hillary is coordinating an apologetics ministry targeting moms which will be announced later this fall. Stay tuned! Hillary currently resides in Pella, IA where she works as an editor and graphic designer for an education based magazine and has been happily married to her husband of nine years Dr. John Ferrer, a full-time writer and apologist. Hillary and John minister as an apologetics team empowering and equipping the church to engage in an intelligent Christian faith.


John.Professional.Headshot.7April2012Speaking! Dr. John D. Ferrer is an educator and former associate pastor hailing from the great state of South Carolina. He has earned degrees in religion, communication, Christian Apologetics, and finally his PhD in Philosophy of Religion. John is married to an accomplished apologist in her own right, Hillary Morgan Ferrer. He’s very proud of her. Just ask him. John has taught at the high school and undergraduate level as well as in churches, conferences, and various special events. He’s addressed audiences from Texas to Turkey, South Carolina to South Africa, and fromNorth Carolina to Naples, Italy.

Currently, John and his wife live in Pella, Iowa and write for an education based website. John continues to travel the country to teach and debate. He’s debated the likes of Dr. Zach Moore, of the Fellowship of Freethought, Mr. David Smalley, of Dogma Debate, and two debates with the longtime host of Atheist-Experience, Mr. Matt Dillahunty. Besides Christian apologetics and critical thinking, John is passionately pro-life and encourages everyone reading this or listening on to seriously consider the case against abortion.

John runs two websites and manages a third:
Apologetics Site: www.IntelligentChristianFaith.com
Abortion Research Site: www.abortionhistorymuseum.wordpress.com
Education Site: www.affordableschools.net


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Speaking! Jamie Greening, D.Min, author of How Great Is the Darkness (website) & The Little Girl Waits (website), a story about human trafficking in the United States. Jamie served as a pastor in Washington State for 14 years. Now he resides in the Texas Hill Country with his wife and daughters and devotes his time to writing and baking biscuits. He is the author of the novel The Little Girl Waits, the collection The Haunting of Pastor Butch Gregory and Other Short Stories, various short stories including Speculation, Jolly Rogers, The Land Begins to Heal, and The Last Message. He also authors the thrilling science fiction series about the Deep Cove Monster, including Deep Cove, Deep Cove: The Party Crasher, and The Deep Cove Lineage. He is one of the original “bards” at Bard And Book Publishing.

Jamie earned a bachelor’s Degree from the University of Texas at Austin (1994) where he studied history and classical civilizations, a master of divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (1998), and a doctor of ministry from Beeson Divinity (2006) on the campus of Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. He blogs as Pastor Greenbean and continues to speak, preach, and teach wherever he may have opportunity. Follow him on Twitter.


IMG_0190Performing! Hallel is a musical project born in the heart of an intentional Christian community on the northside of Chicago, Jesus People USA.  It is the union of two worlds, two generations full of passion with an intention to share the experience of a real God.

Hallel means praise and is comprised of Adri Arango and Aracely Bock. Ardri is on vocals, piano and keyboards.  Aracely also does vocals and plays acoustic and electric guitars. Adri became a follower of Christ and found her calling in music and praise ministry a little more than ten years ago while studying with Campus Crusade for Christ. Aracely has journeyed with the Father through the valleys of cancer to the top of the mountain of the birth of her youngest son into the blended family she has raised alongside her husband of 21 years. Adri and Aracely are both missionaries with an intentional Christian Community called Jesus People USA Evangelical Covenant Church. They are eager to join you to discover God’s grace together.

Check them out:

pa120763-optimized-btoneSpeaking! Anthony Horvath, PhD, author of The Warden Watch (website), is the Executive Director of Athanatos Christian Ministries, a ministry dedicated to defending and promoting the Christian faith through the arts, as much as through arguments and evidence. He is the author of numerous works, the publisher of many others, a speaker, author, and advocate for life issues.

Anthony is the founder of and an author with Bard and Book Publishing. See his latest releases with Bard and Book. Follow him on Twitter & Facebook.

 


Chris-Avatar.d9ffc2ce066f23b69f2b31c839306ac1109Speaking! Christian Lenty, head of the Thailand-based ‘MST Project‘. Follow him on Twitter. Husband to a wonderful woman and gracious wife. His life has been transformed by God on many levels and so his passion is to walk with men as they seek the same redemption and restoration in their own life. He believes that it is important to remember that yesterday is gone, today is a new day, and so he chooses to walk with men as He rewrites the next chapter of their life. It is his hope that through one man’s mess, others can find hope and help.

 


fBQ6_aSi_200x200Performing! Marah in the Mainsail is a Minneapolis-based, cinematic, indie folk band. With an aggressive sound, and eclectic instrumentation, Marah in the Mainsail stands out from the pack.

Follow them on Twitter & Facebook.

 

 

 


Screen Shot 2016-06-04 at 10.51.40 PMSpeaking & Performing! Sean Michel is a musician who hails from Bryant, Arkansas. He was initially known most widely for his appearance on American Idol Season 6. However, he toured with his band for at least two years prior to his appearance on the show, and continues to gain an increasing audience worldwide. Sean makes an impression with his long hair and beard, but is memorable for his soulful vocal style.

Sean Michel has developed a revolutionary persona in this new age of the music industry and stands as a symbol of independent music getting back to its roots. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, & Instagram.

 


womanual-1Speaking! Pastor Dan Mielke, author of The Womanual (website), started his training in female understanding at an early age. After a Caesarean interrupted his undercover research, he was raised in a pastor’s home where he learned to love God and serve people. While studying the Bible at college, Dan also began a lifelong study of his wife Christa. He found that both studies were harmonious and realized that he could only be as good of a Christian as he was a husband and vice versa.

After finishing a biblical studies and speech communication degree from Pillsbury, a Master’s in biblical and family counseling from Maranatha University and pursuing a PhD in apologetics from Trinity Seminary, Dan still considers the beautiful marriage relationship he and Christa enjoy as the greatest qualification and testament to the practicality of the principles found in this book. Follow him on Twitter & Facebook.

 

 


Head ShotSpeaking & Performing! Luke Mielke, of “Out of Da Box” Improv Group (see logo and bio below) – Professor of Media at Maranatha Baptist University. Luke Mielke started his journey in film in elementary school and pursued the media world ever since. Film and video were not his original passion, but as he sought God’s will, it became clear in college God gifted him with a desire and talent in media with an extra strong desire for film. While in college Luke founded FuZion Videos which focused on making videos for small businesses and non-profits. Upon completion of his college degree from Maranatha Baptist Bible College (now Maranatha Baptist University), he transitioned onto the staff at Maranatha. Within two years he began teaching part time at the college, and within another year married Krista Mielke. In 2016 he graduated with an MFA in Motion Pictures and Television with an emphasis on Film Directing from Academy Art University. FuZion Videos, now also offering web design, marketing strategy, and soon to be released video and app based Sunday School curriculum called SYNC, has grown into more than a side business, so the Luke recently gave up the staff work at Maranatha to pursue FuZion Videos more. The first official short film produced by FuZion Videos was released in July of 2016. Plans are to create films regularly from feature length, to shorts, to mini-shorts. These will all challenge the viewers toward Christ. Luke’s passion is to impact the world through the language of media as he believes Christ would have done if media had existed in His time on earth. Luke’s slogan is WWJT, What Would Jesus Tweet.


Speaking! Award-winning Egyptian author Adel Mikhail is a Egyptian pharmacist whose love of books keeps him passionately writing. He received his bachelor degree in pharmacy in 2009 from Ain Shams university in Cairo. Mikhail won the John Wycliffe award for a writer writing in English as a second language back in 2009 for his short story “The Oracle Of The Wicked Land.”. He also won the first place in another writing contest that was organized by Ain Shams University. Adel looks forward to finishing his first novel the events of which take place in modern Egypt. Adel Mikhail is currently living in Cairo, Egypt.


MPK Band bwPerforming! MPK Christian Celtic Band is a delicious blend of Scottish Culture. You’ll savor a musical experience not soon forgotten!  Toe tapping traditional Scottish fiddle tunes with a little Irish thrown in for good seasoning, Highland dancing, our own original songs and a few history lessons await your senses. Our concerts have a positive message for the whole family.”

Follow them on Facebook & Twitter!

 


outofdabox-logoPerforming! Out of Da Box Improv Group. Luke Mielke and his brother Dan enjoyed battling their minds with sarcasm as the primary weapon of choice. Blessed (or some may say cursed) with a minds that think out side of the box neither looked at the world the same as “normal” people. Questions like “did Adam have a belly button?” “If you had a third arm, where would you put it?” “If I’m jumping up in America, am I jumping sideways in Europe?” are constantly running through Luke’s head. He began performing with Dan while still in high school and eventually helped teach improv classes as an assistant for Out of Da Box. With often random ideas and quick whit, Luke thrives on improv comedy.


wayne-rossiter

Speaking! Wayne D. Rossiter, PhD, author of Mind Over Matter (website), is the assistant professor of Biology at Waynesburg University and earned his Ph.D. in ecology and evolution from Rutgers University. After converting to Christianity from atheism and listening to and reading other scientists and science populisers who were also Christians, he noticed many of them were simply becoming yes men to the scientif12573119_632381060227398_5472646320024390714_nic models which he had found increasingly inadequate over the years since he had left Rutgers. In Shadow of Oz, he tells some of his personal story, but also attempts to address some of what he sees as increasingly bad science in the Christian camp.Practically on the heels of his last book (published in October), Rossiter has released a new book, coauthored with his brother. Straying away from his field of biology, this new book – titled Mind Over Matter – looks at the modern world and asks the question “The idea that matter and energy are all that exist, and that these two things alone are sufficient to explain everything about the universe – does this fit the facts?” Follow him on Facebook.


MarkSpence150Speaking! Mark Spence is the Vice President of Outreach for Ray Comfort’s Living Waters Publications. He served for a number of years as the assistant pastor of a Calvary Chapel in Southern California. In that capacity, he was the head of his church’s Bible College and the School of Discipleship. Mark is a dynamic communicator and a gifted expositor of God’s word, with many years of teaching experience. He currently resides in Southern California with his wife Laura and their five children.

Atheist-Delusion-topbar-logo2-2Mark enjoys speaking to university students and faculty concerning the coherency of the Christian worldview. Mark’s passion is to equip Christians for effective personal evangelism unto the glory of God. He teaches in such a way that makes it easy for the average Christian to put into everyday practical use. He is a gifted expositor of God’s Word, and resides in Southern California with his wife where they homeschool their five children. Follow him on Twitter & Facebook. Mark will screen The Atheist Delusion, making it’s public debut at the Festival!


DebbieThompsonSpeaking! Debbie Thompson Writing Contest and Workshop Coordinator and ACM Representative. Debbie is a book reviewer for Northwestern Publishing House and a Christian Book Club leader.  A graduate with a BA from Concordia College, Ann Arbor she is the mother of two home school graduates. Her experiences have primed her to be a valuable contributor to ACM’s curriculum efforts and ‘literary apologetics’ programs.  She is a judge for ACM’s Christian writing contest, a volunteer staffer, and a Writing and Homeschool Coach.


Speaking! Dylan Thompson is an inorganic chemist by training, with a B.S. in chemistry from Hillsdale College and a Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry from Purdue University. Although credentialed in chemistry, he has great affection for the written word, especially in novels. He writes short stories and is working on a science fiction novel. He is also a judge in the ACM annual novel contest. Dr. Thompson is currently an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at Concordia University Wisconsin, in Mequon WI.


8KGQgjkK_400x400Speaking! David Zach is one of the few professionally trained Futurists on the planet, having earned an MS in Futures Research from the University of Houston. Then again, he got that degree way back in 1981, so it’s all pretty much history at this point. He speaks throughout the North America and Europe on trends and traditions, and sometimes even about the eternal things. He’s on the board of the American Chesterton Society and on the advisory board for the Chesterton Academy Schools network. He’s published two books, so far… His website can be found at www.davidzach.com

David will share with the audience his ideas on how to tell the difference between fads, trends and principles – and by knowing how to divide and focus your attention between them can make all the difference in the world.

Follow him on Twitter.