Author Archives

Dan R. Dick

I am the Assistant to the Bishop in the Wisconsin Conference of The United Methodist Church, husband of my beautiful wife, Barbara, dad to my fantastic son, Josh, step-dad to my phenomenal son, Greg, author of fourteen books on spirituality, stewardship, congregational development, research, and spiritual gifts discovery, and an advocate for a more loving, inclusive church for the 21st century and beyond.

The Urgency Element

Two major research projects have essentially defined my ministry for the past ten years: congregational vitality and seeker spirituality.  A recent job change offered me (forced) a unique opportunity to pore through a veritable mountain of surveys, interviews, and site visit notes to determine what to keep and what to […]

Christianity for Dummies?

Do you have to be stupid to be a Christian?  I sometimes wrestle with this very question.  It’s reminiscent of the joke poster — “You don’t have to be crazy to work here… but it helps.”  One of the most common reasons Christian spiritual seekers outside the church give for […]

Wipe That Smile Off Your Faith

Humor is a powerful tool for communication and relationship building.  A good sense of humor is an essential element of mental, and even physical, health.  Most people like to laugh, they like being around others who laugh, and they are drawn to those who make them laugh.  Laughter is good […]

Oh We, Of Little Faith

I received three emails today that I call “Chicken Little” messages.  You know, the panicky ‘sky-is-falling’ folks who take every apocalyptic message as gospel fact.  Somewhere, someone is marching out the old, tired chestnut that the United Methodist Church is dying and won’t be around in thirty or forty years.  […]

Popular Mythconceptions

On the 200th anniversary of the births of both Abraham Lincoln and Charles Darwin, it is amazing to see how these two men have attained legendary, larger-than-life stature.  It is not that both men don’t deserve admiration, respect, and the attention they receive.  Lincoln and Darwin, each in his own […]

Theology of Worship?

A few year’s ago, I attended worship at a hot, new, up-and-coming congregation situated in a strip mall, eschewing anything smacking of “traditional” church (at least in The United Methodist system).  We sang a lot of ‘contemporary’ tunes, saw a ‘post-modern’ dramatic interpretation of scripture (in mime and ‘liturgical’ dance) […]

The Big Five

For years, United Methodists have pledged to uphold the church by their “prayers, presence, gifts, and service.”  Just this year a fifth promise was added — “witness.”  It is a little problematic that we’ve added a fifth when we haven’t done a very good job with the first four — […]