GoodLion: The Birth of CGN Podcast Network
In late 2018, two youth pastors and podcasters, Aaron Salvato and Brian Higgins, were seeking ways to continue sharing the gospel and building up the church. They were both about to move on from a long season of youth ministry, and wanted methods to encourage their former students to keep following Christ, and to impact other Christians on the journey.
One night, over frozen yogurt after a youth camp, they came up with the idea of starting a podcast network. The vision was not to build a platform around one single person or show, but to lift up others and build something that would last.
Soon they were joined by collaborators like Mike Neglia and Lindsay Kennedy, who encouraged them to pursue this calling and helped develop the idea further. Before they knew it, they had a growing team of passionate individuals who were excited about sharing the gospel and discussing complex topics in theology and culture. They named their network GoodLion, as a nod to the famous line in C.S. Lewis' book, Chronicles of Narnia, which said, "Aslan isn’t safe, he’s a lion! But he’s very good."
Growth and Partnership with CGN
Aaron focused on building the web platform and recruiting and training podcasters, while Brian managed the editorial team and recruited writers to create articles that encouraged and inspired. The GoodLion website was launched, and their podcasts started gaining traction.
They soon caught the attention of Kellen Criswell, the executive director of Calvary Global Network (CGN) at the time, who loved their vision and asked if they wanted to make GoodLion a ministry of CGN and add some of the shows the CalvaryChapel.com team was already producing to the roster.
GoodLion was thrilled to partner with them, and soon after, Aaron became the web strategist and podcasting director for CGN. GoodLion grew into a network of over 40 podcasts.
After five years of growth, the podcast network had become a vital ministry for CGN. The vision and values reflected those of Calvary Global Network, and the majority of podcasters were from the CGN family. Between the GoodLion founders and the CGN Executive team, the unanimous decision was made to rebrand it as CGN Podcasts.
The vision was to fully embrace what the podcast network had grown into, and to embrace the mission to use podcasts as a method to preach the gospel, make disciples, and plant churches.
The Legacy of GoodLion
Although the podcast network has been rebranded, the legacy of GoodLion lives on through Aaron and Brian's ministry work (which they have called GoodLion Ministries). Working together with CGN, they continue to focus on the original vision of diving into the depths of theology and culture to point young people back to a God who is not safe, but good!
Through their efforts, such as the GoodLion podcast, the GoodLion School of Discipleship, Aaron & Brian continue to work towards pointing others to Christ. They are grateful to CGN for paving the way for them to build such an incredible resource that is helping so many.
The GoodLion / CGN Podcast Network's journey has been one of growth, change, and transformation, driven by the passion and dedication of those involved. As it continues to grow and evolve, we can look forward to seeing what God has next and what fruit will come from it.