WHY WE EXIST

ABOUT LIKEWISE

Likewise Worship exists for the purpose of discipling worship leaders that God is calling to shepherd His people. We aim to equip and develop followers of Jesus and gifted musicians to lead humbly and creatively in their contexts for the purpose of unifying the local church through music and worship.

THE LIKEWISE TEAM

JUSTIN UNGER

Founder & Executive Director

Justin has been committed to the local church for over 12 years as a worship pastor.  Passionate about unifying the Body of Christ with the gift of music, he has learned to stand firm amidst the cultural and traditional challenges that many churches face in regards to worship and the Sunday gathering.  He is a pastor of pastors and has a heart to disciple, equip and encourage both young and seasoned worship leaders  that are called to serve the local church.

Justin serves primarily as the Executive Director with Likewise Worship and also as a Speaker & Consultant for churches that are struggling to bring all generations together in worship.

He is married to his wife Falon, and together they have 4 beautiful children.  Visit www.justinunger.com to learn more about Justin’s music ministry. 

JOSHUA JAMES

Lead Director

Josh has been leading worship and growing as a pastor for the last ten years. A graduate of Grand Canyon University with a BA in Christian Studies, he has a heart for discipleship, particularly for investing in young worship leaders. Josh is currently serving as the worship pastor at Hope Church in Phoenix, Arizona. 

Josh serves primarily as the Lead Director with Likewise Worship, helping oversee the Phoenix collective gatherings, the ministry vision and curriculum, and our “Connection” branch, bringing worship leaders and churches together during the interim season.  

Josh and his wife Brynne currently live in Phoenix Arizona.

NINA WATERS

Administration & Accounting

Nina has been serving in various ministries in the local church for over 30 years.  She has a heart to serve the body of Christ and loves helping others.  Nina worked as a legal secretary and in the recruiting department of a large Dallas, TX law firm for 10 years.  She and her husband, Tommy, have owned their own business for 18 years.  The organizational skills, attention to detail, financial and administrative experience she has gained over the years bring a much needed asset to the Likewise team.  Nina and Tommy have been married for 39 years and enjoy spending time with their daughter, son in law and four beautiful grandchildren.

JAMES PARKER

Area Director - San Diego, CA

Bio Coming Soon

BEN SWEET

Area Director - Orange County, CA

Passionate about God and his beautiful wife Lauryn, Ben is the Worship Pastor at Voyagers Bible Church in Irvine, CA. He has been in ministry for 10 years, leading worship and pastoring in the local church in multiple capacities. Involved in student ministries, programming teams, and adult ministries, Ben loves God’s church and is passionate about leading God’s people to greater intimacy with Him.

Likewise Worship Collective has been pivotal in his life, marriage and ministry, walking with him through steep peaks and valleys over the past 3 years. His desire is to help see the ministry that loved on him, love, support, and equip other worship pastors, wherever they find themselves, right now!

EPPIE VICENTE

Area Director - Northern Arizona

Bio Coming Soon

JOSH WATHEN

Connection Director

Originally from Quincy, Illinois, Josh felt the call into full-time ministry when he was fifteen years old and has been actively serving the Lord in worship ministry since 2015.

Josh began leading worship with Justin at Bethany Bible Church in Phoenix, Arizona while pursuing a bachelors degree at Grand Canyon University. In 2017, God planted Josh and his wife Hannah in Orange County, California where they have been pastoring at Calvary Church of Santa Ana ever since.

Josh serves as our “Connection” director for churches in the California area.

COMING SOON

Area Director - Phoenix

Bio Coming Soon

COMING SOON

Area Director - Northern California

Bio Coming Soon

There are THREE Pillars to LIKEWISE WORSHIP…

COLLECTIVE

We host gatherings in multiple cities each month designed to equip and empower local worship leaders with the practical tools and encouragement they need to lead effectively in their communities. 
 
One-on-One mentorship is made available to each worship leader as we seek to not only experience growth in our leadership, but also maturity in our walk with Jesus.  Having accountability and a safe place to process certain struggles is vital to the health of these worship leaders’ ministries and marriages.
 
Annual retreats are offered to Collective worship leaders! Our annual Likewise Worship Leader Retreat is a 3-day getaway tailored to the worship leader’s need for restoration, renewal, and encouragement. The annual Likewise Marriage Retreat is an opportunity for worship leaders and their spouses to have their marriages strengthened as they are paired with and encouraged by our Likewise Mentor Couples during this time together in the mountains.

CONSULTING

It is our desire not only to raise up healthy and humble worship leaders, but to promote a biblical heart of worship and unity in the local church.
 
Cultivating a new heart of worship in any community is long, hard work. Many of the issues that arise in churches boil down to a “heart problem.” 
 
We offer consulting services that include a “diagnostic” evaluation of a church community, an understanding of the problem, and a practical solution. It is our desire to walk alongside churches through this process with an end goal of a healthy worshipping community led by a healthy and humble worship leader.  

CONNECTION

Our goal for each Collective worship leader is for them to join a worshipping community and serve there faithfully. One of our main passions is raising up and sending out worship leaders.
 
The Local Church plays an important role in this! We offer interim worship leading help for churches in need. We also function as the connecting point between local pastors and worship leaders. 

THE COMMAND

Throughout Scripture, the people of God are commanded to worship in Spirit in Truth (John 4:24), to be unified (Eph. 4:1-3), to encourage one another by singing together (Col. 3:15-16), and to bring a sacrifice of praise (Heb. 13:15). We are to do all of these things with a spirit of humility, with the interests of others in mind (Phil. 2:3-4). 

THE PROBLEM
There is great division in the church today and much of this division is caused by our different preferences, especially when it comes to music. Our consumeristic culture has suggested that the Church exists to meet all of the believer’s “needs”, which turn out to be preferences. This puts enormous pressure on worship leaders to make everyone happy each week with the songs they sing and how they are sung. 
 
This impossible task has proven to wear down worship leaders over time. The expectation to perform is burdensome. One in every three worship pastors are currently experiencing symptoms of burnout, and some have left the church never to return. This burnout causes many problems in the ministries, families, and marriages of these worship leaders. 

THE SOLUTION

The role of a worship leader must be to help the body encourage one another through songs that are true about God and true about themselves, regardless of style. Because it all comes down to the “heart” of worship, a worship leader must be a disciple-maker. If the role of a worship leader continues to equal “performer” or “rockstar”, we will struggle for unity in our consumeristic culture. Together, we must adopt a biblical heart of worship.

We believe that worship culture and philosophy is set and maintained by the worship leader. Likewise exists for the development, discipleship, and mentoring of this next generation of worship leaders and their families. The goal of our time spent with these worship leaders is to raise up those who can lead a multi-generational gathering with a shepherd’s heart. We pour into these worship leaders in three distinct ways: monthly gatherings, one-on-one discipleship, and annual retreats.