Youngest Megachurch Pastor?

For U.S. churches with 2,000 and more attenders – commonly known as megachurches – the typical senior pastor is age 51. That average almost obscures the amazingly wide range from youngest to oldest.

The “most senior” department includes Charles Stanley who came to Atlanta’s First Baptist Church in 1971. Born in 1932, he’s in his 80s. Chuck Swindoll and Jack Hayford were both born in 1934, Ed Young Sr in 1936, Tommy Barnett in 1937, and John MacArthur in 1939. (All these dates have been published in newspapers and other media, so I’m not letting out any secrets!)

What about the youngest eaders? Here’s my sense of the dozen youngest megachurch pastors, again taken from published reports:

Church Name City State Webaddress Senior Pastor Birth
Experience Life Lubbock TX www.experiencelifenow.com Chris Galanos 1982
Valley Creek Church Flower Mound TX www.valleycreek.org John Stickl 1981
Bethany World Prayer Center Baker LA www.bethany.com Jonathan Stockstill 1981
Elevation Church Matthews NC www.elevationchurch.org Steven Furtick 1980
Solid Rock Church Portland OR www.ajesuschurch.org John Comer 1980
Crenshaw Christian Center Los Angeles CA www.faithdome.org Fred Price 1979
Emmanuel Church of Greenwood Greenwood IN www.egreenwood.org Dan Anderson 1979
The City Church Kirkland WA www.thecity.org Judah Smith 1978
The Church at Brook Hills Birmingham AL www.brookhills.org David Platt 1978
Rocky Mountain Calvary Chapel Colorado Springs CO www.rmcalvary.org Eric Cartier 1978
Eastside Foursquare Church Bothell WA www.eastsidechurch.org DJ Vick 1978

The answer? Currently Chris Galanos seems to be the youngest megachurch senior pastor in the United States! The two photos in this blog are of him and the church he leads, which was founded in 2007.

For more blogs in this  “megachurch” series, see also World’s First Megachurch?”,  “Megachurch Languages?”, “Biggest Megachurch Sanctuaries?” , “Megachurch Books?” and “How Many Megachurches?”. For global megachurches, see www.leadnet.org/world.