win my free ticket to Catalyst West

Great event in 2 weeks with some friends over at Catalyst and the church leadership sub-culture. It’s the Catalyst launch event on the West Coast, dates are April 22-24, 2009, in Irvine, California at Mariners Church.

This will be my first time I’ve ever attended a Catalyst experience. I’m glad it’s not 12,000+ people, and more like 3,000 people. And I kinda don’t want to go alone.

So I’ve got a free ticket. Add a comment here for why I should let you have it. On April 10th after 2:00pm Pacific, I’ll pick one out of the thread to give the free ticket. This is totally subjective and not a random drawing. [contest rules: I made up these rules; my decision will be final; any comments after Fri 4/10 2pm Pacific will not qualify.] [update 4/11] The winner of the free ticket to Catalyst West is Brett Crimmel! Congratulations!

You can still register at: or by phone at 888-334-6569. Mention Rate Code BLG and you can save an extra 10% on the ticket price.

Here’s a starter question for your comment: what makes attending a conference most valuable to you during this time of year?
Or, if you’re not the gambling type, get 10% off by using rate code BLG when you register.

Yes, this is a high-production kind of deal. Lots of big-name speakers. Lots of excellence and high-quality stuff that makes for a memorable experience. (I’d like to say that all of the speakers will be live and in person, but I can’t promise. Maybe someone from Catalyst can confirm.)

Worship by Hillsong United, Steve Fee, Aaron Keyes and Joel Auge

Speakers include: Andy Stanley, Craig Groeschel, Rick Warren, Guy Kawasaki, Ravi Zacharias, Francis Chan, Brian Houston, Erwin McManus, Perry Noble, Catherine Rohr, Jud Wilhite, and Luis Palau…

Plus, on the first day 4/22, Origins and Catalyst Labs are hosting interactive sessions with leaders like Dave Gibbons, Alan Hirsch, Blake Mycoskie (Toms Shoes), Erwin McManus, Eric Bryant, Dan Kimball, Jamie Tworkowski (To Write Love on Her Arms), Margaret Feinberg, Mark Batterson and many others.

Oh, and put your idea in for what The Origins Project should name their new community and/or network for cultivating creativity and innovation for the passion of mission and evangelism. Go to the Origins website for that.

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38 Responses

  1. jeffreygibson says:

    Hi DJ,

    Three years ago I attended Catalyst in Atlanta with our team and the impact was immeasurable. It changed the way that we looked at everything from children's ministry to what music we used in adult worship. I still remember the feeling of being called to a higher level as a leader.

    Being on the west coast, I've not been able to make it back to Atlanta, so I was thrilled when I found out about Catalyst West, and immediately put it on my calender. The economy, however, has forced our conference funds to be cut back, canceling my planned trip. But if I had a free ticket, I would pay for the gas myself and sleep on a buddy's couch, which I would gladly do!

    I've been praying for a way to go, so thanks in advance for doing God's work!!!

  2. Hey DJ,

    Regardless of if I get your free ticket or not, you are simply a stud. I love your heart for the kingdom and your willingness – on all kinds of levels – to make information and resources available to the little people out there.

    Why give me your free ticket? I guess because my 4 week old church plant can't spend money on that kind of stuff right now since there's other things we HAVE to spend that same money on. But if you did want to, it would be great to spend a few days picking your brain.

  3. dydaktix says:

    Hey DJ,

    I happen to be in town that week, to check out some church internship possibilities. For one of the possibilities, the key leaders are going to it, and *might* have a ticket for me, but they aren't sure at this point. It would be a great way for me to get to know them, and I hope to connect and network with people. Obviously if they can provide me a ticket, I'd pass this one back to you, or pass it forward.

    Otherwise, I wouldn't be able to attend.

    And it definitely seems like a great conference in its own right. It'd be great to catch up with you as well. I was planning on contacting you when I'm down there.


  4. DJ – I have a free place to stay and a way to get to Irvine. . . I just don't have a ticket. I would love to go to Catalyst because I have never been and I think it could be an AMAZING opportunity to learn from all the different speakers whose books I sell yet rarely//never get to hear in person.

    That and I am broke. :0

  5. joshinthe818 says:

    Hey DJ, thanks for the opportunity. I thought I'd submit my reason via video. Hope you can spare 59 seconds. Here's the link:

  6. Hey DJ- all the speakers will be live.

  7. Charles Lee says:

    Great Youtube Video by Josh! 🙂

  8. Adrienne says:

    Hi DJ.
    Just dropping you a note to say I appreciate your giving a ticket to a leader who doesn't have the cash to go. I'd love hanging at Catalyst for the worship and spiritual growth, but I think the others above me on this list will make more of a difference for Christ.
    Blessings from a fellow Orange County resident!

  9. djchuang says:

    Thanks for all the comments so far! I gotta say, you are not making my job any easier. Now I'm second guessing myself and maybe I shoulda opted for a random drawing or a guess-the-number contest. But, what's written is written, or in this case, what's blogged is blogged.

    At this moment, I'm definitely leaning towards someone who has never been to a Catalyst event. So, those of you who have already been to one, I'm going to have to graciously say thanks for the comment and maybe see you some other time some other place.

    And, Josh, your video was incredible! What an effort! You know you can hang out with me any time, so you don't have to go to a conference to do that. 🙂 Just give me a call and we can meetup and/or tweetup 🙂

  10. djchuang says:

    Thank you for confirming, Brad! And thanks for letting me be part of the fun to give away a free ticket here.

  11. Wes says:


    I've never been to a Catalyst, but having worked in/around a church for the previous two summers I've been mentored by and worked alongside many who spoke very highly of the networking/leadership events. A little bit about myself: I'm a senior (graduating in Dec. 09) World Religions major and Sociology minor at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, CA. I grew up in Tyler, TX (in the belt-buckle of the Bible belt) where I attended a large United Methodist church my whole life.

    I've been hurt by the church, and I'm not really sure who to blame. But I'm not ready to completely walk away from Her; I've tried that before and it didn't work out for me and it didn't work out for Her. I believe there is a generation of people rising up who are committed to breathing new life into what it means to be a leader and what it means to be part of the structures and the hierarchies of the Church.

    I strive to invest myself daily in the future of the church. I'd love to attend Catalyst because I–one day–hope to start a church of my own, God willing. I want to know what it means to be a leader in the 21st century. I want to know the proper role of technology and church. More importantly, I want to know how to 'build' a church without building an institution that abuses: instead I want to let the Triune God be the builder and sustainer of community because He is Community, and only through Him can we have community.

    I believe Catalyst is the gateway to many practitioners and voices who are leading and hacking the way forward in this journey of redeeming the Church–a task that is too big for us to take on individually. I'd love the opportunity to learn from these lectures/seminars as well as experience the community of leadership going on at Catalyst and to be part of what Catalyst is birthing in the world.

    Good luck with your decision,

  12. joshinthe818 says:

    Thanks DJ. I'll definitely take you up on that . . . even if you choose someone else. 🙂

  13. Vince says:

    I'm a church planter. A 'tent making' church planter at that. Which means not only do I have the work load of being a pastor, but I also am part of the work force and still the ends don't meet.

    Doesn't leave any coin for catalyst, which I would love to check out.

  14. Micah Foster says:

    My ultimate goal is to plant a church in or around San Francisco. I need all the great ideas I can get.

  15. djchuang says:

    Great to hear from so many church planters who want to do something more reach more people, and an event like Catalyst can certainly inspire, motivate, and provide leadership insights. I know I've only 1 ticket to give away, and perhaps someone out there would be generous to offer something too.

    Wes, thank you for taking the time and thought to share your story. I am sympathetic to the hurts you've experienced in an institutional church. I believe we all have our bad church stories. And yet able to reconnect with God in a healing & restorative way, that you're preparing to be a church leader. Grateful for you!

  16. The short answer? I'm desperate for fresh inspiration. The opportunity to learn from leaders who are further down the path I'm currently on would be like a creative, spiritual kick in the butt.

    For the past three years, I feel like I've been an a holding pattern. That may sound negative but it's been a blessing — God's used the time to tear down idols in my life and draw me closer to Him. I've matured and most importantly, I know that my identity is in Him alone. However, I believe this holding pattern is coming to a close and that it's time to land…time for me to start focusing again on my calling as a writer, communicator and how I'm to use the gifts God's blessed me with to tell others of his love.

    I've been frustrated over the past few months because I have no tangible idea of what that will look like and how it will take shape. And I've been blocked, creatively. So the possibility of interacting with other leaders at Catalyst is extremely exciting. I have plans to be in the area already so when I saw your tweet, I had to comment. 🙂 I've heard a lot about these conferences and right now, it seems like it would be a good “fit” for where I'm at.

    In any case, thanks for having this giveaway and giving someone such a cool opportunity. Blessings!


  17. djchuang says:

    And the winner is… BRETT CRIMMEL! Congratulations Brett! Thrilled to see how you've launched Forefront Church in Littleton, Colorado! Love seeing how your church is using social media on full tilt!

  18. joshinthe818 says:

    Congratulations Brett!

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