2020 CoRE Conference Preview

2020 CoRE Conference Preview

Substance and sexual addictions are on the rise. People are coming to church struggling with pornography, opioid use, drunkenness, eating disorders, social media obsession and other destructive behaviors. How can pastors and peers give hope to those they know who are needing help from debilitating sins? This year’s CoRE Conference, “New Life: Hope and Help for an Addicted World,” will cover these issues.

On Sunday There is optional early check-in between 5-10pm (Davis Room)

Monday Schedule
7:30 – 8:45Check-in, Breakfast, Book/Ministry Connection
8:00 – 8:45Coffee with the Speakers
9:00 – 10:30Bruised and Broken by the Fall – Sam Horn
10:45 – 12:00Unmasking Addictions – Jim Berg
12:00 – 1:30Lunch, Book and Ministry Connection
1:30 – 2:45Breakout I
3:15 – 4:30Breakout II
4:30 – 7:00Book and Ministry Connection
5:00 – 7:00Dinner
7:00 – 8:15Passions of the Heart – John Street
8:30 – 10:00Reception, Book and Ministry Connection

Tuesday Schedule
7:30 – 8:45Book and Ministry Connection
8:00 – 8:45Coffee with the Speakers
9:00 – 10:15Biblical Insights into Addiction – Mark Shaw
10:30 – 11:45Breakout III
12:00 – 1:30Lunch, Book and Ministry Connection
1:30 – 2:45What Should the Church Do? – Steve Pettit
2:45 – 6:00Book and Ministry Connection

Breakout I:

  • Understanding Temptation – Mark Shaw
  • Ministering to Enslaved Men and Women Through the Local Church – Jim Berg
  • A Biblical View of Sexuality – John Street
  • Biblical Help for Those Who Self-Harm – Steven Cruice
  • Addicted to Appearance: The Struggle with Body Image and Identity – Julie Lowe

Breakout II:

  • Divine Intervention: Hope and Help for Family of Addicts – Mark Shaw
  • A C.A.R.E Model of Ministry for Local Church Volunteers – Jim Berg
  • Distortions of God-Designed Sexuality – John Street
  • Biblical Help for Those Who Struggle with OCD – Steven Cruice
  • Addicted to Social Media: Helping Parents and Youth Climb Back Out – Julie Lowe

Breakout III:

  • Addiction Proof Parenting – Mark Shaw
  • Working Through the Triggers of Enslaving Sins – Jim Berg
  • Purifying the Heart of Sexual Idolatry – John Street
  • Biblical Help for Those Who Struggle with Eating Disorders – Greg Mazak
  • Anxiety in Kids and Teens – Julie Lowe



Dr. Mark E. Shaw is the Founder of The Addiction Connection. He and his wife, Mary, have four children and celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary this year. He serves as the Director of Counseling at Grace Fellowship Church in the northern Kentucky / Cincinnati area. He is a certified biblical counselor with ACBC and IABC.

He enjoys writing and is the author of over 20 published works including: The Heart of Addiction: A Biblical Perspective, Hope and Help for Chronic Illness, Relapse: Biblical Prevention Strategies, Divine Intervention: Hope and Help for Families of Addicts, Cross Talking: A Daily Gospel for Transforming Addicts, How Not to Raise an Addict: Biblical Prevention Strategies, and Understanding Temptation: The War Within Your Heart.


Dr. John Street is professor and department chair for the graduate programs in Biblical Counseling at The Master’s University & Seminary in Santa Clarita, California. In addition to his ministry at TMUS, he serves as an elder and lay pastor at Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California.

John is a second-generation pastor, giving more than 40 years to pastoral ministry. He was the founding pastor of Clearcreek Chapel in Springboro, Ohio, where he also built a strong counseling program and training center with a special emphasis in training pastors. He currently serves as the president of the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors (ACBC).John is married to Janie, his wife of 41 years, and they have been blessed with four children and six grandchildren. He is the author of Passions of the Heart: Biblical Counsel for Stubborn Sexual Sins and has co-authored Men Counseling Men: A Biblical Guide to the Major Issues Men Face with John MacArthur and The Biblical Counseling Guide for Women with his wife, Janie.


Julie Lowe is a faculty member at CCEF. She holds an MA in counseling from Biblical Theological Seminary. She is a licensed professional counselor with over fifteen years of counseling experience. She has extensive experience with women’s issues, sexual abuse, body image issues, parenting, and child maltreatment issues, and regularly speaks at events on these topics. 

Julie is also a registered play therapist and has developed a play therapy office at CCEF to better serve families, teens and children. She is a trained facilitator for Stewards of Children, a non-profit organization that provides training on child sexual abuse. Julie has trained a therapy dog that she works with both professionally and on a volunteer basis. Julie and her husband, Greg, have six children and serve as foster and adoptive parents. Julie is the author of several articles in The Journal of Biblical Counseling and of a new book, Child Proof: Parenting by Faith Not Formula.


Jim serves as a professor of biblical counseling at BJU seminary after having served as dean of students of BJU for 29 years. He teaches biblical counseling and discipleship courses. He has a DMin degree in biblical counseling from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and holds advanced certification (ABC3) with the Association of Biblical Counselors.

Jim has authored numerous books including Basics for Believers, Changed into His Image, Essential Virtues, When Trouble Comes, God is More Than Enough and Quieting a Noisy Soul—a multi-media personal study program addressing guilt, anger, anxiety, and despair.

Jim also serves as the executive director of Freedom That Lasts®—a Bible-centered ministry to those struggling with addictions and hurtful life circumstances and as the director of Faith Counseling Institute, both of which are based at Faith Baptist Church in Taylors, SC. Jim and his wife Pat have three married daughters and eleven grandchildren.

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Steve Pettit became the fifth president of BJU in May of 2014. An alumnus of BJU, Pettit previously served on the Board of Trustees. He earned a BS in business administration from The Citadel in 1978 and a MA in pastoral studies from BJU Seminary in 1980.

Following his BJU graduation, both he and his wife, Terry, saw their calling in pastoral ministry and evangelism. For five years, Pettit served as youth pastor for First Baptist Church in Bridgeport, Michigan, before entering full-time evangelism.

In the following 29 years, the Pettits traveled year-round in evangelism, conducting more than 800 campaigns, crusades and camps throughout the United States and preaching in 21 countries.


Dr. Sam Horn is the executive vice president for enrollment and ministerial advancement at BJU, and Dean of the Seminary and the School of Religion. Prior to serving at BJU, Sam was president of Central Baptist Theological Seminary and gained extensive pastoral experience at churches in Minnesota, Wisconsin, South Carolina and Tennessee.

Frequently a speaker at conferences, churches and schools around the world, Sam’s years of local church ministry and life-on-life ministry with young adults have prepared him to tackle the tough issues today’s churches are facing.

He earned a BA, MA and PhD from BJU and a DMin from The Master’s Seminary.”

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Dr. Steve Cruice has more than 20 years of counseling experience serving as a missionary, pastor, assistant pastor, school administrator, counselor, and college professor. He has conducted a number of workshops on counseling issues in local churches and at BJU.

A member of the Bob Jones University faculty since 2006, Dr. Cruice teaches biblical counseling on the undergraduate and graduate levels. His courses emphasize Christ-centered biblical counseling and the key doctrines of the sufficiency of Scripture and progressive sanctification. He has a passion for God, His Word, and helping people handle the problems of life in a way that glorifies Christ.Dr. Cruice is very active in his local church. He started and teaches a biblical counseling training class for the laymen in his church. He serves as a deacon and a gatewatcher. He is involved in counseling others in his local church. He and his wife are also actively involved in the community as foster parents. He also leads a biblical counseling ministry to the Spartanburg Detention Center.

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Dr. Greg Mazak has actively served in Christian ministry for over 25 years as a youth pastor, pastor, camp and conference speaker, and professor. Becoming a Christian while completing an undergraduate degree in Psychology at the Ohio State University, he then earned the M.Div. and Ph.D. (New Testament) degrees from BJU, as well as an M.Ed. in Counseling from Clemson University.

Dr. Mazak has spoken at churches, schools, conferences, and camps throughout the United States. A member of BJU’s faculty since 1986, Dr. Mazak has taught numerous classes related to biblical counseling, psychology, and church ministry at Bob Jones University. In addition to teaching he also oversees both the undergraduate and graduate degrees in biblical counseling.  Dr. Mazak is burdened that his students have a biblical view of every aspect of life, including counseling.  He is fully committed to the sufficiency of Scripture and the ability of the Holy Spirit to radically change believers as they progress in their sanctification.   Dr. Mazak is currently the pastor-teacher of Trinity Bible Church (Greer, SC), where he and his wife Nancy have actively served as members since 1986. Those few times when he is not enjoying his ministries at BJU and TBC, or spending time with his wife or 3 daughters, you will most likely find him working in his yard or riding his motorcycle in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains just north of Greenville.