JV-Profile (6.6.2014)After fifteen years of ministry in the Chicago metropolitan area, most recently as the Associate Pastor for Youth Ministry at Fourth Presbyterian Church, John W. Vest currently serves as the Visiting Assistant Professor of Evangelism at Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond, Virginia.

Growing up as a functional fundamentalist, his faith was deconstructed while studying religion at Rice University and he was born again as a progressive Christian while studying ministry at the University of Chicago Divinity School, where he also went on to complete the coursework for a PhD in Hebrew Bible. After deciding that he no longer wanted to write Bible commentaries, he earned the Doctor of Ministry degree at McCormick Theological Seminary, with a thesis on “Post-Christendom Confirmation.” He is the co-founder of the Progressive Youth Ministry conference and recently published a collection of confirmation sermons called It’s Not Conformation. An enthusiastic pitmaster, John dreams of one day achieving the mystical union of church and BBQ.