Great coaches have what’s called a “Coaching Tree.” It’s the legacy of former assistants who have gone on to great things in their own right. The longer they coach, the farther and wider those branches stretch.
No youth pastor has a deeper, wider, and more influential tree than Dr. Jim Burns.
Jim Burns has been involved in youth ministry since the time he was saved at 16. He even turned down a baseball scholarship to Stanford in order to study for the ministry at then little-known Azusa Pacific University. He led a growing youth ministry in California, where he mentored a high school kid named Doug Fields. Jim became a key part of the Youth Specialties speaking team, working closely with the legendary Mike Yaconelli and Wayne Rice. He has written resources which now have more than 2 million copies in print. He eventually turned his rich wisdom towards parents, and became the President of HomeWord and the Executive Director of the HomeWord Center for Youth and Family at Azusa Pacific. He and his wife Cathy still speak regularly at parenting and marriage events around the country, and are the proud parents of three grown daughters and proud grandparents of James and Charlotte.
Even with his many achievements and rich legacy, Jim still gets teary-eyed thinking about the students who didn’t get it. It’s a quality that makes him a great youth pastor.
We know you will enjoy our conversation with the gracious and wise Dr. Jim Burns.