Welcome Daniel Shelton:
New Executive Pastor
As a native of the Indianapolis area, Daniel is eager to return to Indiana where he will serve as Venture’s first Executive Pastor (XP). Growing up on the city’s west side, Daniel had a front-row seat to a healthy, growing ministry at Kingsway Christian Church in Avon. His parents were founding members, and he began serving on staff while still in high school.
It was in Joplin, Missouri at Ozark Christian College where he met his wife Emily who grew up in Keokuk, Iowa. Married in 2003, they served at a small church in Joplin before moving to Springfield, Illinois on their one-year anniversary.
For the next 15 years, they would call Springfield home as Daniel served in two primary roles at South Side Christian Church. Initially, he led the church’s music ministry. While in this role, he earned a Master’s Degree in Worship Studies from Lincoln Christian University. In 2012, he began serving as the church’s first XP, overseeing a majority of the support and pastoral staff. In addition, he was responsible for many of the operational aspects of the church’s ministry including facilities, finance, human resources, and communications.
Daniel’s wife Emily has also held a variety of positions in Springfield including Junior High Bible teacher at a local Christian School, a piano teacher, and an interim Children’s Ministry Director. More recently she has served as a children’s librarian at a local library and a travel agent specializing in Disney vacations.
Daniel and Emily are also parents to two girls (ages 10 and 7). As a family, they enjoy camping in their pop-up camper, traveling, music, and catching the latest presentation of live theater.
Throughout the search process, God continued to add clarity to Daniel and Emily’s decision to move their family to Indiana and begin a new ministry at Venture. For example, because they would be working hand in hand, it was important to Daniel to know who God would call to serve as Venture’s new Lead Pastor. Prior to any formal commitment from Daniel or Stan, they had the opportunity to spend time together. They marveled at many of the connections they shared and were both eager to consider working together in the future.
The role of XP requires a unique blend of leadership and attention to detail all the while maintaining a heart for people. Daniel’s diverse background in worship ministry and staff leadership allows him to lead the church towards a more effective and efficient ministry. He aims to lead in a way that resources the church’s staff and leadership to better accomplish the church’s mission of helping more people get to know Jesus and live like him every day.