Podcasts are cool. Right now there are probably a couple thousand podcasts out there. This past Friday was even dubbed “International Podcast Day,” so to celebrate, I thought I would drop a list of my favorite podcasts that I think any pastor or ministry leader could benefit from. I’ve divided them into categories so that you can browse quickly, however, most of these podcasts are great no matter what area of ministry you serve in!
The Seminary of Hard Knocks Podcast
What can I say? I had to plug my own! I focus on practical leadership while having fun. This podcast will cover worship teams, pastoral leadership day to day issues, and communications related topics. What do you do when your worship band is too loud? How do you run a great staff meeting? How can you stop scaring people away from your church with your first impressions team?
Rainer on Leadership
Thom Rainer is a Lifeway Legend. His podcast is focused on everyday leadership within the local church from the senior pastor’s point of view. He gets into elder meetings, worship flow, and trends he sees happening in the church world. He’s a wise mentor that always has something helpful to say. Like Gandalf.
Andy Stanley Leadership Podcast
Andy is an exceptional strategic leader and the principles taught here are from both the church and business world. Andy does a great job of bridging the gap between the two so that there is something for everyone. These are universal principles that make stronger leaders…period.
Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast
Carey tends to approach ministry from the startup and church plant perspective while still providing lots of great insights for everyday church leadership. Avid reader and logical thinker, Carey does a great job of providing practical action steps for listeners.
This is Your Life with Michael Hyatt
Micheal Hyatt was a CEO of a major publishing company and brings a lot of wisdom and insight to the table. He’s great for learning how to be a leader in written and video form, especially those who are a little older and maybe a bit terrified of the internet and the word “blog.” Though he can lean to the “self help” side, Michael is a very wise virtual mentor and truly worth your time.
Rich Birch has created something here that every pastor can benefit from. Not only does he help pastors with many business and functional aspects of the church, but he also often provides graphics and materials to go along with his teachings that are really well done. This is a great podcast for executive pastors.
Pro Church Podcast
Brady Shearer is THE voice when it comes to using video in your church. He helps leaders and pastors understand elements from live streaming and announcements to telling a story in your video and what camera to buy. This guy is responsible for most of what I know about those things and he always brings on powerhouse guests. He is also very Canadian, so, what’s that all aboot, eh?
Building a Storybrand with Donald Miller
Author of “Blue Like Jazz,” Donald knows how to tell a story. While this podcast tends to focus on branding for business, it is extremely applicable to storytelling in the church. Whether writing a testimonial for your website or redefining your mission, vision and values, Storybrand is an incredible resource. Pay whatever they ask. Donald Miller and Jon Acuff are two of the only Christian writers that really make me belly laugh.
The Church Communications Podcast
A relatively new podcast that pulls guests from the communications world to gain knowledge and share the wealth. Hosted by Darrel Girardier and Katie Allred of Brentwood Baptist in Tennessee. It’s a quick listen every time but packed full of great content. Nobody interviews like these guys and you’ll be challenged every time.
Communicate Church: Fishhook
Another great communications podcast. Fishhook never ceases to amaze me as they bring fresh content every episode. This podcast is for communicators or those who want to get better at general branding, communicating information, and engaging the culture where people are at. They provide practical how-to’s for most of the issues churches face in the digital realm.
That Church Podcast
Started by Justin Dean and Van Baird, That Church Conference is aimed at church communicators. The podcast launched and due to an incredible online Facebook group, word has spread like wildfire. This podcast takes relatively unknown guests from the trenches of church ministry and covers how to communicate the Gospel through digital channels. If you really want to know the “word on the street,” this is where you’ll find the latest trends in Church Communications, especially in social media.
Beyond Sunday Worship Leader’s Podcast
For worship leaders, this podcast is a MUST! David Santistevan discusses worship flow, theology of worship, and lots of practical how-to including some tech and lighting. What I love most is his focus on discipleship in the worship arts. Worship leaders have to lead several departments at once on Sundays in most churches, so this podcast can help streamline your system and grow you as a leader walking with Jesus as you invest in others.
The Church Collective Worship Leader Podcast
A podcast based on the practical side of leading worship with a wide variety of guests from the worship leading world such as Leeland, Phil Whickem, and Stu G. I haven’t listened to this one as much but they seem to have their stuff together.
A practical podcast that is just as encouraging as it is helpful. Tom Pounder has a heart for student ministry as well as investing in the next generation of student pastors. A lifetime learner, you can bet that Tom’s passion for student ministry is fueled by the constant learning and innovation he experiences in his own ministry. He’s a super-encouraging guy, so check this one out for sure.
After 9 Student Ministry Podcast
Probably one of the most fun youth ministry podcasts I’ve heard. These guys are young and passionate for reaching students with the Gospel. Zac and Chad pride themselves on being “the most honest hour in youth ministry.”
The Download Youth Ministry Podcast
Doug Fields has been in the youth ministry game for as long as I can remember and his successor, Josh Griffin, has taken the reigns at Saddleback. Together, they do this podcast with others and have an incredible resource I’ve mentioned here called Download Youth Ministry. Check all of that out if you work with students and be blessed! You can gain insights from pros who’ve been at it for years and then hit up the site and download games, illustrations, series, and more on the cheap.
Children’s Ministry Podcast/Kid Min Talk
To be honest, I don’t have a need to listen to a lot of Children’s podcasts, but so that there is something here for that crowd, I’ve checked this one out and it’s pretty great. Karl Bastian from Kidology.org hosts the show.
Children’s Ministry Now
Trevor Adams hosts a panel of children’s ministry pastors to discuss the issues of family ministry, children, and how to view the home church as a mission field. This is a fun discussion with a Q & A time at the end.
Podcasts are an easy and fun way to digest new information during your morning commute, while out on a run, or before bed at night. Don’t waste the opportunities to grow that podcasts can afford you as you grow in your ministry role! True leaders are lifelong learners! Tell me your favorite in the comments!
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