It seems that the practice of good churchmanship has fallen by the wayside in modern times. Even within the resurgence of "New Calvinism" of the past decade of so, where there has been a growing recognition of God's sovereignty in salvation, many have observed that ecclesiology, or the doctrine of the church, has not received the attention it deserves and is therefore not well understood by many young believers.

Since its inception in 2008, BTC has sought to encourage the up-and-coming generation of believers—specifically Reformed Baptists—in their commitment to Christ as demonstrated in part by their commitment to the local church. Promoting the biblical doctrine of the church has always been at the center of BTC's purpose.

10 years later we are still seeking to reach the next generation of confessional church members with an emphasis on glorifying Christ through service to His Bride. To reaffirm our desire to see young people involved in their local churches and churches built up as a result, the theme of BTC 2017 centers on the importance of the visible church in every generation since it was established by Christ over 2,000 years ago.

View the full agenda with session titles here


Earl Blackburn

Senior Pastor, Heritage Baptist Church • Shreveport, LouIsiana

Earl Blackburn

Upon completion of his theological education, he was sent to Utah where he labored as a church planting missionary for seven years carrying the gospel to the Mormons. He was then called to Trinity Reformed Baptist Church in La Mirada, CA where he pastored for 22 years. He has also served as Chairman of the Administrative Council of the Association of Reformed Baptist Churches of America (ARBCA). He has traveled extensively preaching at pastors conferences in the North America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.

Brother Earl is the author of Covenant Theology: A Baptist Distinctive (SGCB – 2012), Jesus Loves the Church and So Should You (SGCB – 2010) and John Chrysostom (Evangelical Press – 2012), contributed to the book Denominations or Associations (Calvary Press – 2001), and numerous periodicals including Founder’s Journal, Reformation Today, and Banner of Truth, and has authored several booklets published by Reformed Baptist Publications including Covenant Theology: A Reformed Baptist Overview, Unconditional Election, Why You Should Join A Church, and Which Church Should You Join. He has pastored Heritage Baptist Church (SBC and ARBCA) in Shreveport, LA since 2006.

He and his wife Debby were married in 1975 and have one son Caleb.

John Giarrizzo

Pastor, Grace Covenant Church • Gilbert, Arizona

John Giarrizzo

John was born and raised in a Roman Catholic home in upstate New York. He attended parochial school through fourth grade, after which his family moved to Mesa, Arizona, where he has lived ever since. During his senior year of High School, John took night classes in real estate, acquired his real estate license at the age of 18, and was a full-time realtor for 6 years. The Lord powerfully converted John to Christ one day in 1979, while watching a Hal Lindsay program about the Second Coming of Christ. Shortly afterwards, the Lord led him to a Calvinistic Baptist church in Mesa, where he came to embrace the doctrines of grace. John married Roberta, in 1980 and in 1983, they were blessed with their first child, David. The following year John graduated from Redeemer Theological Seminary and was commissioned by his church to plant a new church. On September 8, 1985, Grace Covenant Church held their first worship service in a restaurant banquet hall. In 1986, John and Roberta were again blessed with their second child, Paul. Both of his sons and wives know the Lord and are members at Grace Covenant. In 2005, John received his Master of Divinity degree from Phoenix Seminary.

Sam Renihan

Pastor, Trinity Reformed Baptist Church • La Mirada, California

Sam Renihan

Sam was born in Massachusetts, the fourth of five children. He grew up in a Reformed Baptist home and church under the teaching and preaching of his father, a Reformed Baptist pastor. At age five his family moved to Wisconsin for two years while his father pursued a doctoral degree.  Two years later they moved back to Massachusetts where his father took up a pastorate in the city of Worcester. At age 11, the Renihans moved to southern California where Sam's dad took on the role of professor at the Institute of Reformed Baptist Studies. Although he cannot pinpoint a specific moment in which he was converted, Sam was baptized at age 14 upon profession of faith. In 2006, after his first year of college, Sam married Kimberly Winton. In 2008 they were blessed with a son, Owen. Sam graduated from the University of California, Irvine in 2009 with a Bachelor's degree in Spanish Literature and Culture. Having felt an internal call to the ministry, largely fueled by a gradual external call from TRBC, Sam enrolled in Westminster Seminary California and the Institute of Reformed Baptist Studies. In 2012 he graduated from Westminster as a Master of Divinity. In September of 2012 Sam was ordained and installed at Trinity Reformed Baptist Church. Aside from ministerial labors Sam enjoys good food, reading, playing & listening to music, and playing with his son, Owen.


4:00pm        Arrival + Check-in
5:30pm        Dinner
7:15pm         Session 1 | John Giarrizzo
                   "Possessing a Multi-Generational Perspective"
9:00pm        Introductions + Fellowship


7:00am        Devotions (optional)
8:00am        Breakfast
9:15am         Session 2 | Earl Blackburn
                   “Considering the Preceding Generation"
11:00am       Group Activity
12:00pm       Lunch
1:00pm         Free Time + Afternoon Activities
4:00pm        Roundtable Discussion | Pastors Blackburn, Giarrizzo, & Renihan
                  "The Reformation: Past, Present, Future"

5:30pm        Dinner
7:00pm        Session 3 | Sam Renihan
                   “Living in this Current Generation: Our Individual Calling"
                   Breakout Session 2
9:00pm        Hootenanny + Fellowship


7:00am        Devotions (optional)
8:00am        Breakfast
9:30am        Session 4 | Earl Blackburn
                   "Living in this Current Generation: Our Corporate Responsibility"
                   Group Photo
12:00pm       Lunch
1:00pm        Fellowship + Rest
4:30pm        Session 5 | Sam Renihan
                   “Preparing the Next Generation”
5:30pm        Dinner
6:45pm        Session 6 | John Giarrizzo
                   “Leaving a Legacy for Future Generations”
8:00pm        Q+A Session | Pastors Blackburn, Giarrizzo, & Renihan
9:00pm        Fellowship


7:00am        Devotions (optional)
8:00am        Breakfast
9:30am        Praise + Prayer
11:30am       Lunch + Departures

Location & Amenities

BTC 2017 will again be held at Northern Arizona University (NAU) in beautiful Flagstaff, Arizona, June 23-26. NAU is easily accessible from Interstate 10 and close to plenty of shops and restaurants.

Note: Attendees are responsible for their own travel arrangements.


The Suites at NAU provide a hotel-type feel with the following amenities: Comfortable suite-style rooms, a 24-hour fitness center, a game room complete with pool table, foosball, air hockey, arcade games, TVs, and a movie theater. Additionally, the facility includes a business center with computers, four lounges with study rooms, laundry (accepts credit or debit), an ATM, and FREE Wi-Fi.


Bedroom Suites

Every one bedroom, one bathroom suite includes two twin-sized beds, linens (blankets, fitted sheets, flat sheets, pillows, towels, & washcloths), two dressers and nightstands, ceiling fans, desks with chairs, closets, a mini refrigerator & microwave, and FREE internet. Please note that although we expect the temperatures to be quite pleasant that weekend, the rooms do not have air conditioning.

Feel free to plan ahead of time who you want to room with for the weekend; or just wait until check-in to figure it out. If you have specific lodging requests, please let us know. Additionally, we make every effort to separate men and women on different floors, with the exception of married couples who will have their own rooms.

Packing Suggestions

  • Cash for things like parking, on-campus swimming, Starbucks, vending machines, off-campus excursions, etc.
  • A small fan for your room in case it gets too warm
  • An extra blanket or sheet (the bed sheets provided are fairly light)
  • Your best Hootenanny performance!


  • Bible & pen
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Clothes for 80° weather
  • Light jacket or sweater for cool evenings
  • Toiletries
  • Hat & sunglasses
  • Sunscreen