About

about US

YouthQuake LIve

Month after month we are amazed as we hear stories of teens who came to the event and encountered the power of God leading them to a decision that night or weeks and even years later.  We also know that God has planted seeds in the lives of thousands, many whose stories we will never know.  Throughout the years, we have been able to record over 18,000 decisions, which include first-time commitments to Christ, decisions to go on mission trips, recommitments in their walk with God, and commitments to a lifestyle of purity.  God has truly done more than we could have ever asked or imagined.

History

History

In 1994, a group of students from Christ the Redeemer Church went on mission trips to Ecuador & El Salvador with the missions organization Global Expeditions.  That summer, they saw the power of God unfold through their lives as they saw first hand that God desired to use young people to impact the world.   

When they returned to Jacksonville, they realized that God could use them in their own city. They were equipped with vision; however, they understood that passion has to come with a plan. Sean Yost, their youth pastor, suggested that they start a Bible study, but they wanted more. Much more. In the weeks that followed, God gave Sean the vision and direction, which ultimately led to YouthQuake Live. He desired to create a live event where teens could utilize their talents, gifts, and creativity to forever change the lives of their peers.

Twenty teens with a passion & hope for their generation created the first YQL event, which took place in February 1995.  That first night they peered from behind the curtain  and watched as the seats filled to the brim. Forty teenagers entered into the event with a hunger to know Christ. That night, God confirmed YQL’s mission and purpose. A handful of teens, clip-on lights and lots of duct tape were commissioned for a purpose greater than they could have ever imagined.

25 Years of Reaching Teens

95-96 1st Season

96-97 YQL Tour

97-98 Revolution Tour

98-99 Unashamed Tour

99-00 Ignition Tour

00-01 Invasion Tour

01-02 Domination Tour

02-03 Momentum Tour

03-04 Invincible Tour

04-05 Defiance Tour

05-06 Savage Tour

06-07 Project 4:31 Tour

07-08 ReAction Tour

08-09 Rooftop Tour

09-10 Demolition

10-11 Resistance Tour

11-12 Unstoppable Tour

12-13 Restoration Tour

13-14 Declaration Tour

14-15 Legacy Tour

15-16 Generation Tour

16-17 Encounter Tour

17-18 Accelerate Tour

18-19 Breakthrough Tour

19-20 United Tour

YouthQuake Live Testimonies

God has done so much over the years.  What started as an idea has impacted tens of thousands of people.  Here’s a handful of testimonies we hope will inspire you.  

Cast Testimonies

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YouthQuake Live has changed every aspect of my life. I have been a Christian my whole life, but YQL has taken my relationship with God to a whole new level. It has secured my eternal destiny and strengthened my faith. ~ Gabe, 15
   

YQL has influenced me in many ways. It gave me the opportunity to socialize with my friends and witness to them. I have made lifelong friends because of YouthQuake. It has impacted my life for the better. ~ Leah, 17


To me, YouthQuake Live is an incredible opportunity to witness to my peers in a completely natural and enjoyable way. Normally, having a heart-to-heart conversation with someone is not natural, but YouthQuake provides the opportunity to minister to others and meet them where they are. ~ Emily, 16


I’ve always been the good kid who never said anything wrong; but because of that, I never spoke out about my faith. YouthQuake gave me the courage to speak out about my beliefs and share them with my friends. ~ Adam, 17


YouthQuake Live is a positive influence on my life. It gives me a definite way to share the gospel with my friends by just inviting them to come. My favorite part of YQL is talking to students in the altar call room. I love being part of changing other students’ lives. ~ Kate, 15

 

Intern Testimonies

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I knew YouthQuake Live was something special from the very first time I walked into a show. I wanted to become a cast member as soon as I had the chance. As a cast member, my relationship with God went to the next level. Because of that, I decided to intern the following year. I interned for two years, and during that time, I learned so much about godly leadership and how to mature in my walk with Christ. I was able to apply the skills I learned in YouthQuake to other areas of my life. This experience changed my life forever. ~Briana, 20

Being part of YouthQuake Live has changed my life for the better. Surrounding myself with other teens who have a heart for the Lord and want to spread the great news of Jesus to others is amazing. Being a leader to my group of kids has also helped me come out of my shell even more, and I am already an outgoing person. I have grown in leadership skills and in my faith. I can say with all my heart that I don’t know how I could live confidently and successfully without having YQL in my life. I believe that YQL has taught me to desire more out of my life and ministry. I now know that God has a lot more for my life, if I want it. ~ Ben, 24   

audience testimonies

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Before attending YouthQuake, I was unsure about Christ and if He really existed. I didn’t know who I was or why I was created. I had suicidal thoughts because I thought nobody loved me. Hearing my first YQL message changed all that. I just wanted to say thank you because YouthQuake really did change my life. ~ Kelsey

I would just like to say that YouthQuake is AMAZING. I have been having troubles wondering if I’m really appreciated, and one of the YouthQuake shows really impacted me. I even started crying during the show. Thanks for all that YQL does to make shows happen each month! ~Caroline

My friend invited me to a YouthQuake show in 2006. I went because I didn’t like where my life was headed or the choices I was making. I didn’t have a good group of friends but going to the YQL show really opened my eyes. I loved seeing other teens worshiping. I was thirsty for something to change my life, and I found what I was looking for at YouthQuake Live. I gave my life to Christ, and it was the best decision I ever made. ~Mary

local pastor testimonies

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When I moved to Jacksonville five years ago to pastor Freedom Christian Fellowship of the Assemblies of God, I immediately began to look for what ministries were in the area touching the lives of teens. I was thrilled when I found out about and experienced the ministry of YouthQuake Live.I have seen lives changed and surrendered to the Kingdom of God because of this ministry. I would encourage every pastor to connect their youth and youth leaders with YQL. Pastor Steve Powers – Freedom Christian Fellowship

YouthQuake Live has provided an incredible presentation that tackles issues relevant to teenagers. In addition to tackling issues, YQL provides great entertainment on a Friday night, giving teens an alternative from clubs and other ungodly environments. We use YouthQuake Live as an outreach for students.You don’t have to plan or prepare anything, and your teens will get an organized, prayed over, exciting night of ministry that will impact their lives.  Pastor Stoval Weems – Celebration Church of Jacksonville

YouthQuake Live is a big vision with which God has blessed our community. Our church and student ministry have exploded with excitement for Jesus because of YouthQuake Live. Students from all walks of life will benefit from the great worship, fun atmosphere, and the power of the Word. It will change your life!  Pastor Tom Bary – Neptune Baptist Church, Jacksonville Beach FL

YouthQuake Live is an exciting and effective ministry that challenges youth in our community. It has provided opportunities for leadership for several of our teens. The presentation that YouthQuake Live ministers is a creative and excellent presentation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It challenges teenagers by encouraging them to grow in their faith towards a deeper commitment with Jesus Christ.  Pastor Gee Sprague – Crossroad United Methodist Church, Jacksonville FL

YouthQuake Live has become a vital ministry to the transformation of our city. I have watched it grow from a handful of excited teenagers with a vision to impact their generation to a nationally recognized phenomenon. I attend every chance I get. I never tire of seeing so many young lives surrendered at the altar each show. Our whole congregation has been blessed and challenged by our involvement in YQL.  Pastor Daniel Williams – Act 4 the Nations

parent testimonies

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YQL has provided my son with an opportunity to grow in his boldness and confidence before large groups in speaking, acting, and leading. He loves the one-on-one counseling at the end of each YQL show, which gives him the opportunity to talk to other teenagers about Jesus Christ. It has also provided him with a network of godly friends all over the Jacksonville area. Having already surrendered to the ministry, these years in YQL have further prepared him to be the leader God has called him to be. Sean Yost has been an awesome encourager / mentor for him.  Now, our younger son is also a member of the cast.  We have seen a side of him on stage that we didn’t know existed! He loves the Christian environment and talking to other teenagers about Jesus Christ. It’s great to see God develop a heart in my sons for lost teenagers through YQL! ~Cathy  

My son has come out of his shell since he has been a part of YQL. He is more vocal about his faith and has developed friendships that will last forever. I am really proud of what I have seen him do as a part of YQL. Seeing the boldness of the teenagers in the cast, I have been challenged to become more outspoken about my faith and in my prayer life. I consider it a privilege to be able to help out in any way that I can, so these teens can continue to take a stand for God. YQL is a fun, non-threatening way to introduce people to Jesus. It also encourages Christian teens in their walks and to witness to their friends and family. YQL is also a totally free, wholesome event. It’s a great way to spend the night with the family without having to worry about your child seeing or hearing something inappropriate.  ~Nick

We have seen such wonderful things happen in our daughter since her time with YQL. She has matured so much in her relationship with God.  She has been given a spiritual boldness and a fervent desire to share her salvation with others. I have seen her even approach adults with truth and honesty about Christ and how He can be a real presence in their own lives. It touches us so deeply to know she is out there reaching other teens who desperately need truth spoken into their lives. This is truly a God-filled ministry, which I am pleased to say is a part of our family. ~Dawn

battle

A battle for a generation

A Generation in Crisis

There are an estimated 33 million teenagers in the US.

1 in 3 have been drunk in the past month

1 in 4 will use illegal drugs

8000 contract an STD every day

1 million are pregnant

750,000 get abortions each year

1 in 10 have been raped

9 out of 10 have seen porn online

1 of 2 are no longer virgins

40% have inflicted self-injury

1 in 5 have contemplated suicide

Over 1,500 kill themselves each year

53% believe Jesus sinned

83% believe truth is relative

65% say there is no way to tell which religion is true

Values

our Values

YQL Mission
YouthQuake Live exists to partner with our community to inspire young people to fulfill their God-given destiny through life-changing entertainment.
YQL Code: We Act in Audacious Faith

“If You’re Not Living on the Edge You’re Taking Up Too Much Space.”

In order to transform the culture of our city, we can’t think small; we rather fail chasing impossible goals than succeed at small dreams.

Ephesians 3:20 – Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us

Hebrews 11:6 – And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

YQL Code: We Believe Youth Set the Example

“We are Created by Teens, for Teens, to Reach Teens.”

We have a fundamental belief that God wants to use young people to change their community and the world through their God-given gifts and talents.

1 Timothy 4:12 – Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.

Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

YQL Code: We Focus on What Unites Us

“If You’re Not Living on the Edge You’re Taking Up Too Much Space.”

In order to transform the culture of our city, we can’t think small; we rather fail chasing impossible goals then succeed at small dreams.

Ephesians 3:20 – Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us

Hebrews 11:6 – And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

YQL Code: Accountability Equals Motivation to Change

“Accountability Equals Motivation to Change.”

We are a family of believers committed to serving each other.  We willingly open our lives to growth and correction and place a high priority on honest, God-honoring relationships.

Ephesians 5:21 – Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Proverbs 27:17 – As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.

YQL Code: We Will Reach a Generation:

“Age Doesn’t Stop Me, It Just Gives Me More Time.”

Because we value people, we celebrate what the Lord has done by measuring our effectiveness.  Every number represents a soul and we will push the edge of creativity w/ excellence to reach one more.

Psalm 78:4 – We will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the LORD, his power, and the wonders he has done.

Colossians 3:23 – Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men…

STATEMENT OF FAITH
  • We believe the Bible to be the inspired, only infallible, authoritative Word of God.
  • We believe that there is one God eternally existent in three persons: The Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
  • We believe in the deity of Christ, in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, in His miracles, in His vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood, in His bodily resurrection, and in His personal return in power and glory.
  • We believe in the present day works of the Holy Spirit to inspire and empower believers to be effective followers of Jesus Christ.
  • We believe in the resurrection of the saved to eternal life, and the everlasting punishment of those who have rejected God’s offer of forgiveness and salvation through His Son.
  • We strive to contribute to achieve greater unity in all that we do within the Body of Christ.
Denomination

As a parachurch youth ministry, our heart is to come alongside Christian churches to provide support in ministering to teenagers and engaging with missions around the world.  For this reason our ministry has partnered with over 50 different denominations and has chosen to remain officially unaffiliated with any one specifically.  Instead, we remain committed to coming alongside local churches when providing events and opportunities that ultimately facilitate life-changing encounters, leadership training for teens & young adults, and resources for parents and church leaders.  We believe strongly in creating and focusing on unity within the Body of Christ and that to truly make a difference in the lives of the largest teenage generation in history, we must work together. 

FAQ

What Age?

Our target age is middle and high school students but we do allow those who are older or younger to attend of course. 

How much does YQL cost?

YouthQuake Live is a FREE event.  We do take up an offering during the show to help cover production fees.  You may reserve seats  here for a $3 fee if you would like to guarantee that your group sit together.

How do I explain YQL to parents?

The best way is to direct them to the website and have them watch a show so that they can get a preview of the vision and content of YouthQuake Live.  You can also explain that it is similar to a Christian version of Saturday Night Live created by teens to reach teens.

How is YQL funded?

YouthQuake Live is funded by individual donors, show offerings and local businesses that partner with us to reach this generation.  To find out more visit the “Ways to Give” tab at the top of the page.

can my church host a show?

To host one of our events, your church needs to seat a minimum of 1,300 people and be available on Thursday from 2pm7:30pm & Friday from 2pm11pm on the dates that correspond to the first Friday of each month during the school year. If you meet these qualifications, please contact us at info@youthquakelive.com to schedule a date for the YQL staff to visit your facility & discuss further partnership opportunities.

do you tour in other cities?

At this time YouthQuake Live is focused on reaching the city of Jacksonville.  There are tens of thousands of students who have not heard the gospel and we want to reach all of them.   We do, however, encourage local communities to start their own version of YouthQuake Live in their own cities. We have put together a manual to help you accomplish this task, which can be found below.

other questions?

Email us anytime and we will be happy to provide you an answer: INFO@YOUTHQUAKELIVE.COM

What is the age for the True love waits show?

It is our belief that middle school and high school students are already being exposed to issues regarding sex, dating, and relationships. However, these topics are being thrust upon a generation with one view: secularism. It is imperative that young people are given the full truth regarding these issues. We believe that hearing the truth of God’s Word concerning these topics is essential to teen’s convictions, identity, and purpose. Parents are welcome to ask questions and accompany their children to these events. It is our sincerest hope that these shows will spark questions, conversations and equip youth to stand confidently in purity. Click Here to view a past True Love Waits show 

Where do you sell your merch?

Our merchandise is sold exclusively at our live events.  Merchandise varies each season.  

how can I pray for yql?

We would love to have your prayers for YQL as we work to reach this generation.  Here are some specific things you can be praying for:

Cast Members – Creative ideas and boldness as they invite friends to come to the event

Interns & Adult Leaders – love & patience for the students they lead and that God would stretch them as they grow in their leadership

Staff – Wisdom as they make decisions, oversee the interns and work to make YQL more effective

Audience – That their hearts would be open to the message and they would have the courage to respond

Youth Pastors – That they would be encouraged as they give there lives to reaching teens

Finances – Pray YQL would be connected with generous people who have a vision to see more teens reach

 

how do I start Yql in my city?

YouthQuake Live is structured in a way to be an outreach within a community that is created by local teens who want to reach their peers.  It is our hope that other communities can take the vision and structure of YQL into their own cities with a group of teens who have a desire to reach out to their own peers.  Each city has its own unique set of challenges and no one knows that better than those who live there.  If you are interested in starting your own YouthQuake Live, email us at info@youthquakelive.com for a how to guide.  We know God is going to use you and the teens in your community to make a huge difference in the lives of young people.

 

Staff

Staff

Sean Yost

Founder & President

Learn More About Sean

Sean has been working with youth as the director of YouthQuake Live since its beginning in 1995. Sean’s passion is to see young people established in the purpose and destiny that God has for their individual lives and for their generation. He believes that a new breed of teenagers are emerging. They are a generation looking for a cause worth giving their lives for; a generation poised to change the world. His conviction to see young people mobilized into ministry is being fulfilled through YouthQuake Live and short term mission projects. Sean has been active in missions since 1990, when he traveled to Africa for six months. Since then, he has been to over twelve countries. He has also led numerous groups of young people on overseas mission trips, where they were able to experience personally the transforming power of Christ in salvation, miracles and personal renewal. He is currently the Lead Pastor of Redeemer Church in Ponte Vedra, FL. Sean and his wife, Barbara, reside in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, with their three children, Gabriel, Lydia and Josiah.

Ben Wendzel

Ministry Director

Learn More About Ben

Ben joined Youth Quake Live when he was in 8th grade. He spent 4 years in the cast and 1 as an intern. After he graduated from High school, Ben traveled out to Texas to join Teen Mania Ministries. At Teen Mania he toured around the United States putting on 2-day youth events called “Acquire the Fire”.  After 2 and a half years he left to come back home. Since 2014 Ben has worked with his youth group and Youth Quake Live to help reach teenagers all over the city. In the Summer of 2017, Ben was called to vocational ministry. He is excited to be devoting his life to reaching the next generation. With his spare time, he trains for Spartan Races.

Maddie Snider

Volunteer & Communications Director

Learn More About Maddie

Maddie has been involved with YouthQuake since 2014, first as a cast member and then as an intern. She considers the internship to be one of the most enriching experiences of her life, and owes it to YouthQuake for evolving her from a shy, isolated teenager to a determined, proactive leader. She is thrilled to continue with YouthQuake in a staff member capacity. Currently, she is entering her senior year at Jacksonville University as an English major with a Theatre minor and editing certificate. She isn’t sure what she’s going to do with all that, but she has enjoyed the arts and storytelling (in all its forms) since childhood and believes that God instills passions like these in us for a reason. She looks forward to encouraging these passions in the teenagers of YouthQuake Live.

Dawn Hendryx

Development Director

 

Learn More About Dawn

With a background in sales Dawn has brought her skills & knowledge of working w/ people to YQL.  In the past she has served as Project Manager for KidQuake at Redeemer Church, been a VBS teacher, led small group bible studies, and volunteered for SWAT (Spiritual Wellness and Testimonies) at St. Johns County Juvenile Detention Center. She also volunteers monthly at a food bank in the city. Dawn and her husband, Michael, have lived in Jacksonville for over 18 years and have one beautiful daughter, Katie. In addition to homeschooling her daughter, she loves teaching at their co-op. When not working or teaching, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, traveling, cooking, and relaxing at the beach!

Garrett Lester

Intern Director

Learn More About Garret

Garrett first became involved in YouthQuake in 2015, having no previous knowledge of the organization before joining as an intern. He soon discovered that YQL was the place he needed to be, continuing on as an intern for 3 years and receiving the Intern of the Year award in 2017. Garrett then became a co-Intern Director and has continued to serve in this area. In his spare time, Garrett enjoys spending time with his two dogs, Pup and Pepper.  Garrett Lester is just a guy happy to be here.

Matthew Phillips

Intern Director

Learn More About Matt

Matt began his journey with YouthQuake Live as a cast member in 2003. After four years in the cast, he continued his involvement through interning and eventually an adult leader. This year will mark year 12 with YouthQuake Live. He is excited to join the staff team as the Youth Leader Connections Director. Matt loves to guide teens into becoming godly leaders. As such, he is dedicated to coming alongside youth pastors to make the vision of all teens for Christ a reality in the Jacksonville community… and one day the world. In addition to being on staff, Matt is husband to Ashley and father to the adorable Savannah Rose. In his free time, he can be found spending quality time with loved ones over a delicious meal.

Gabe Yost

Event Speaker

Learn More About Gabe

Gabe joined YouthQuake Live as a cast member in 2007.  Growing up at Redeemer Church, Gabe felt called to ministry and began serving as a student leader. After graduating from high school, Gabe spent a year in Teen Mania’s Honor Academy. Since then, Gabe has moved back to Jacksonville and took over as the Student Director of r212 student ministry and serves as one of YouthQuake Live’s event speakers. Gabe is passionate about seeing students come to know and develop a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ. Gabe’s core belief is that it only takes one to make a difference, and students can change the world. Gabe encourages his students to, “Be the One.”

Blake Bennett

Event Speaker

Learn More About Blake

Blake joined the YouthQuake Live cast as a teenager in 2004 and is the Lead Pastor of TheCity.church, a life-giving church centrally located near downtown Jacksonville. Before planting this church, Blake served as the Executive Director of YouthQuake Live and continues to serve as one of our event speakers today. He is passionate about the local church and teenagers discovering their God-given destiny. Blake and his wife, Cierra, have been married since 2012 and enjoy running, eating, and watching too much Netflix together.