Pastors Andrew & Jessica Rodriguez’ experiences growing up couldn’t have been more opposite! But, God brought them together to make the perfect team in ministry. They both have their own unique gifts and creative talent. Andrew has been involved in some form of student ministry since his teen years. In addition to having a passion for young people, he is also an accomplished artist in his own right and has helped lead art clubs at recreation centers in Lancaster for many years. In fact, some things about him that you may not know is that he designed our church’s logo, painted the artwork on the wall of our One Way Youth room, and enjoys doing caricatures! He also enjoys collecting comic books, music, martial arts, and a lively debate. Andrew earned his Bachelor’s in Psychology from University of Valley Forge (UVF), where for eight years he also led a group for men dealing with trauma, addiction, and sexual conflicts; and where he teaches as an adjunct professor. He has his Master’s in Counseling Psychology and he is developing a career as a Christian therapist, seeing clients at Day Seven Ministries, UVF, and True North. Andrew’s greatest passion is teaching Christians the power of understanding who they are in Christ, which he believes will free them to make the greatest impact in God’s Kingdom! Due to his own childhood struggles, he has a tender heart for teens who are experiencing feelings of rejection, loneliness, and depression, and desires to help teens personally experience the healing power of God in those areas just like he has.
While Pastor Andrew grew up in Amish country, Pastor Jessica grew up on the streets of New York City and met God in her early 20s. Her heart for young people was evident early on as she faithfully served as the youth leader at her first home church in New Jersey. Jessica went to University of Valley Forge (UVF) to study music performance, where she cultivated the amazing vocal gift that the Lord has blessed her with. Jessica’s powerful voice, teamed up with her ability to minister, is something beautiful to witness. You will be blessed to hear her when she sings on special occasions and leads the Youth Worship Team. Jessica’s experience with kids over the years is extensive, from preschool age up to teens, whether it’s working in a daycare or in a before-and after-school program at the YMCA. But, no matter what age, Jessica loves working with kids and pouring into their lives. Like Andrew, Jessica has been through some painful experiences that have helped motivate her to look out for the teens who might be overlooked or hurting. Her ability to see through the outward façade that hurting teens often give and relate to them on their level has been a tremendous asset in her role as a youth pastor alongside Andrew. Their goals for One Way Youth is for it to be a safe environment where teens can experience: community, respect, growth, the love of God, discover their worth in Christ, be equipped to understand and defend their faith and use their gifts to serve others and honor God. Jessica loves cooking, listening to worship music, musicals (especially Les Miserables), and watching TV and movies with her hubby.