Top 9 Conferences Every Christian Leader Must Attend

I’m a conference junkie. I can’t help it. I have gained enormous value from attending conferences at least a few times a year. Since I wrote my article “10 Tips to Maximize Your Conference Experience,” many people have asked me which conferences they should attend. So, here’s my top eight conferences I’m recommending for every Christian leader. Please note that I haven’t attended all of these conferences yet. Some of them are based on the great testimonials and recommendations from friends and colleagues.

Catalyst Conference


2016 Theme: Uncommon Fellowship



Date: Catalyst West: (March 30, 31, 2017)

When you enter PAULSOHN, you get a 15% discount off the early bird registration for a limited time. 

Why You Should Attend!

Catalyst is simply the best leadership conference I have ever attended hands down! Catalyst is a powerful gathering of young leaders, a movement of influencers and world changers who love Jesus, see things differently, and feel a burden for our generation. Catalyst has been described many ways, but once you’ve experienced it, you’ll call it what they call it—pure leadership adrenaline.

Leadership has been the topic of focus for the Catalyst brand since inception. Catalyst and the annual Conferences provide a wide cover for addressing a variety of topics specific to Next Generation Leaders, including organizational leadership, personal leadership, integrity, character, relationships, and teamwork, among others.

One cool perk is FREE books dozens of publishing companies give away like candy.  Last year, I got more than 15 free books, all free! Besides that, there’s lots of fun entertainment and cool things to do that keep you from getting bored.

Notable Speakers: John Maxwell, Andy Stanley, Malcolm Gladwell, Dave Ramsey, Jon Acuff, Christine Cain, Francis Chan, Simon Sinek etc.

Pricing: $269 (early bird registration), $299 (regular price) Note: prices vary for each location and timing of your ticket purchase) 

Center for Work and Faith Conference

Center for Work and Faith Conference

2015 Theme: TBA


Date: November 6-7, 2016

Why You Should Attend!

The CWF Conference is a unique opportunity to learn how to amplify your influence as young Christian professional in our workplace. Founded and sponsored by Timothy Keller’s Redeemer Presbyterian Church, the annual conference encourages societal leaders’ discernment of God at work in the world. The fact of the matter is work is an expression of humanity not as the exclusive source of our identity. Too many young Christians have been enslaved by the demoralizing effects of work. Through inspiring speakers and shared experiences and responses to this work, you’ll experience His transforming grace as well as practical pointers on how to be salt and light of this world.

Notable Speakers: Dr. Timothy Keller, Mark C. Crowley, David Kim, Julia Easterlin, Dr. Julia Wattacheril, MD, MPH, David Chang etc.

Pricing: Early Bird ($129)



SCORRE Conference

SCORRE Conference

2016 Theme: Prepare with Focus, Deliver with Confidence, Speak with Power


Date:  October 17-20, 2016

Why You Should Attend!

Michael Hyatt says “this is the single best conference I have ever attended. I use what I learned every single day. If you are a communicator, this conference will help you prepare with focus, deliver with confidence, and speak with power.” I haven’t had the chance yet to attend the conference, but I heard extremely positive reviews particularly with its specific delivery techniques and personal attention where you will prepare and deliver one speech a day followed by one-on-one coaching by expert trainers. You will discover how to find and effectively use powerful illustrations and inspire your audience to action.  You will learn to prepare powerfully focused, crystal clear talks and then deliver them with confidence and power.

Notable Speakers: Michael Hyatt and Ken Davis

Pricing: Early Bird Registration: $1397 (tuition & conference meals, lodging not included)

Q Conference

q conference

2015 Theme: Q Denver- Stay Curious. Think Well. Advance Good


Date: April 21-23, 2016

Why You Should Attend!

Q is the Christian equivalent of TED Conference. Q attendees hear thirty presentations in a concise 18, 9 or 3 minute formats. This is a place where the most influential and innovative thinkers meet from every channel of society to share the next big thing. Though the conference is relatively a big investment, this is a great networking opportunity with today’s thought-leaders. The Q Conference curates a forward-looking conversation that celebrates what’s right, imagines what’s possible and educates Christians on how they are meant to play a central in God’s work to renew all things. Over the course of three days, Q introduces participants to myriad topics presented by over fifty experts. Their ideas have been selected to heighten our awareness and challenge our creativity as we consider our roles, individually and corporately, in shaping culture. Though this may seem like a big financial investment, it is much inexpensive compared to TED ($7,500), The Summit Series ($4000) or The Aspen Institute ($2750)

Notable Speakers: Jason Russel, Mark Burntt, Dr. Kara E. Powell, Jessica Rey, Rebekah Lyons, Rich Stearns, Margaret Feinberg, Brad Lomenick, David Kinnaman etc.

Pricing: $475 (Early Bird Discount)



2016 Theme: Architects of Tomorrow


Date: May 6, 2016

Why You Should Attend!

Leadercast is a one-day broadcast live from Atlanta to over 100,000 leaders around the globe. Unlike many conferences, you don’t have to travel outside of your city. You can find a host site that will simulcast the conference LIVE. This makes the price point very affordable (somewhere around $50-$100) depending on when you purchase the ticket. I have invited several friends to attend this event together which made the learning even better. The best part of the conference is the amazing line up of world renowned speakers.

Notable Speakers: Dr. Henry Cloud, Jack Welch, Andy Stanley, Malcolm Gladwell, Simon Sinek, Laura Bush, Randall Wallace etc.

Pricing: Very affordable. Around $60-90 for simulcast. For LIVE event, usually around $250+

Storyline Conference


2016 Theme: Come and Plan a Meaningful Life


Date: November 9-11, 2016

Why You Should Attend!

Storyline conference is a unique conference that helps you rethink your entire life. You will leave this conference with greater clarity around your life, answering questions like “Who are you?” “What makes you tick, what lies do you believe about yourself, what do you really want to bring into the world after you stop people pleasing? You will leave the conference with a working plan. You’ll enter a proven process and work through more than one-hundred pages of material and 30 day process to lock in what you’ve learned. Overall, you will become more attuned to who you are and understand how God has formed with you His purpose.

Notable Speakers: Don Miller, Bob Goff, Jon Acuff, Anne Lamott etc.

Pricing: Storyline has the most unique pricing structure of any conference on the planet. They are the first to offer a “pay what you want” system. The minimum payment is $45. You can pay a lot more based on your willingness to pay for the value.

The Global Leadership Summit


2015 Theme: TBA


Date: August 6-7, 2015

Why You Should Attend!

The Global Leadership Summit is a two-day, world-class leadership event experienced by more than 170,000 leaders around the world, representing more than 14,000 churches. It’s telecast LIVE from Willow’s campus (near Chicago) every August. The mission of the conference is to transform Christian leaders around the world with an injection of vision, skill development and inspiration for the sake of the local church.  I would call this a more robust, intensive, and longer version of Leadercast.

Notable Speakers: Bill Hybels, Collin Powell, Patrick Lencioni, Mark Burnett, Henry Cloud, Bob Goff, Andy Stanley

Pricing: Individual Rate $249

The Platform Conference


2016 Theme: Helping You Get Noticed in a Noisy World


Date: TBA 

Why You Should Attend!

The market is more crowded than ever. Worse, people are more distracted than ever. To succeed, you need a platform. The Platform Conference is designed to give you an unfair advantage in launching or building yours. Whatever message you’d like to share you need one thing, PLATFORM. This is arguably the best conference that will give you specific and practical advice and material on how to amplify your influence and platform. You’ll learn how to avoid the common pitfalls that stop most from realizing their full potential. This conference provides an effective framework for making sense out of social media and understanding how to prioritize (and maximize) your activity. You’ll know how to leverage your platform to further God’s Kingdom.

Notable Speakers: Michael Hyatt, Ken Davis, Michele Cushatt, Jeff Goins, Ray Edwards, Derek Halpern etc

Pricing: Ranging from $997 to $2097

CLA Outcomes Conference

CLA Outcomes 17

2017 Theme: Momentum


Date: April 4-7, 2017

Why You Should Attend!

CLA (Christian Leadership Alliance) Outcomes conference is perhaps one of the most underrated and undervalued conference for Christian leaders. I’ve attended the conference twice and unlike any other conference, I come back with the greatest takeaways not only in terms of content but also valuable connections with thought-leaders. Founded 40 years ago, CLA’s mission is to equip and unite leaders to transform the world for Christ. One of the highlights are its ITI (Intensive Training Institute) – an all day workshop where attendees can choose from categories including leadership, resource management, fundraising, etc.

Notable Speakers: Tony Evans, Michael Oh, Richard Stearns, Steve Douglas, Eugene Cho, Peter Greer

Pricing: Ranging from $699 to $899

Question: What conference did I miss that every Christian leader must attend?