Student Ministry

Dave Paxton, Associate Pastor - Students & Discipleship
Our student ministry focuses on ministry to students in grades 7 through 12 and their families. Students lead our ministry with encouragement and support from our Student Pastor and a great team of adult volunteers.


We have small groups for students meeting each Sunday morning (9:15am and 10:45am). Small groups gather in our Student Center (located on the west side of our facility) for at time of welcome and connection and then meet throughout the Student Center and in other classrooms for small groups. Click here for a listing of small groups complete with location and leader info.


Each Wednesday at 6pm (unless otherwise noted) our students gather in the Student Center (located on the west side of our facility) for a time of worship, teaching and . . . well, fun. This student planned and led service features worship from our praise band, teaching from Pastor Dave and other activities and group discussions designed to encourage and challenge students all while honoring God through worship and introducing Christ to those who do not have a personal relationship with Him. Our desire is simply this - to make disciples. A disciple is one who knows Christ and "hears and obeys" HIs commands. Our Wednesday service is a great "first connection point" for students and friends. Invite your friends and plan to join us each week. You never know what may happen!


Absolutely! It's just not on the calendar yet. We have much to do and some great things in store. So, be sure to check back regularly. Better yet, get involved. Join us on Sunday mornings for small group and worship and then on Wednesday nights for our worship gathering. Now's the time to get involved. It's all new and exciting!


Dave Paxton is a veteran of student ministry. He has served students in churches across the southeast for the past thirty-eight years. His passion for the Word of God and leading teenagers to become fully-devoted disciples of Christ is contagious. God has gifted Dave with gifts of teaching and encouragement and he uses these gifts to help students see the incredible life God has in store for them through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
Dave was born in Tennessee, spent some of his child-hood in California before moving back to Tennessee. He is a graduate of Carson-Newman College and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Sharon, moved to Orange Park to begin serving here at First Baptist in October 2012. Prior to serving here, Dave served as Student Pastor at First Baptist Church Hendersonville, Tennessee and Olive Baptist Church, Pensacola, Florida.
Be sure to check out his blog - - for interesting articles regarding student ministry and insights for students, parents and youth workers.


Austin Libal serves as our Associate Student Minister, under the leadership of Dave Paxton. Austin is a graduate of The Baptist College of Florida.

He is married to Nicole.