When Chris Baney graduated from Van Buren High School in 2008, he had a passion for music and Jesus. A lifelong Findlay resident, Chris moved on to attend Bowling Green State University but felt that he wasn’t yet finished in Findlay. When he graduated he returned to his hometown to serve as the Music/Creative Arts Pastor for Cedar Creek’s Findlay campus. In 2015, Baney became Findlay’s Campus Pastor. He credits God, his wife, a wonderful staff and previous leaders with helping him to thrive in his role as a young pastor.
The gift of music
When Chris was a child his father started a music studio for Christian artists. “I got to hang out with my Dad in the studio which developed my love for music. I realized at an early age that God had gifted me in that area and my parents supported that, but they channeled it towards serving in the church,” he explains.
Chris and his family attended Stonebridge Church where he gave his life to Christ and served on the worship team. His passion for music remained steady throughout college. That ultimately led to a job offer from Cedar Creek Church. He led worship at the Whitehouse Campus before being asked to become the Worship/Creative Arts Pastor in Findlay.
Helping people understand Jesus
In 2015, Chris was asked to make a transition from music and become the Findlay Campus Pastor at the age of 25. “I was a young leader who stepped into the Campus Pastor role and from there God has put amazing people in my life to help me grow. I love music and it will always be a part of me, but I felt like my next level was helping people understand Jesus personally,” he explains.
One of Chris’ biggest influences is his wife Ashleigh. “Because of who my wife is and the support and love that she gives to me and our family I am a better pastor. She’s my rock; she makes me a better person and a better leader.”
The best part of the job
“Without a doubt, the best part of my job is watching as people’s lives are changed by Jesus. I also just love it when people realize they have a God-given purpose that they can use to make a difference. Last but not least, I get to work with some of the most passionate staff and volunteers who come with humble hearts to serve God,” says Chris.
Baney family local favorites:
Favorite restaurant: Stix.
Favorite place to spend time as a family: Cedar Creek. We love the church. That is, by far, where we have made the most memories as a family.
Favorite coffee shop: We Serve. Coffee.
Favorite date night spot: My wife and I love the atmosphere of Findlay Brewing Company.
Favorite place to spend time outdoors as a family: Toledo Zoo (a short drive away).
Favorite ice cream: I’m going to have to say Archie’s. Their shakes are what I grew up with as a kid.