Church Leadership

Captives to Comfort

I spoke with a pastor recently who told me his congregation sold a gift of land, not because they needed the money, but because they were afraid they might have to move.  The parcel of land was larger, centrally located to new developments in the fastest growing area in the […]

Near Miss Worship

No one sets out to offer vacuous, insipid, superficial, or self-absorbed worship.  Pastors and lay leaders both dedicate themselves to creating meaningful, spiritual and authentic worship experiences.  Yet, at a gathering of 21-29 year olds who have “given up on church” that took place in 2007 , these were the top […]

Working Ourselves to Death

Someone I went to seminary with passed away recently, and I found it interesting that colleagues and members of his churches fondly and appreciatively noted that “he was so dedicated.  He must have worked 80 hours a week, at least!”  Many people made mention of his Herculean work style, often […]

Lying for the Greater Good

Okay, I know I am sounding like a broken record, but no other subject has garnered the kind of response this one has.  The subject of truth-telling in leadership is volatile.  As I have said before, what is most amazing to me is how strongly some pastors and lay people […]

To, For, or With

I listened to a sermon on restorative justice — one of my passions.  I am generally an easy audience for justice messages, but this particular one kept jarring me.  The preacher hammered on the need for us to be in ministry to both victims and victimizers, to the incarcerated, to […]

Listening to Teach, Speaking to Learn

Deeply etched in an archway in Myrtos-Pyrgos is the Minoan phrase, “Listen to teach, speak to learn.” This counterintuitive instruction echoes through the ages to challenge practices in contemporary Christian education and faith formation. In a culture where speech is valued over listening and where teachers are more highly revered […]

Daniel In the Liar’s Den

Okay.  I have written some controversial — even inflammatory — things on this blog, but I never thought that the idea that “pastor’s shouldn’t lie” would generate the kind of energy it has.  (Caught on the Ethical Horns of a Moral Dilemma) Many people are leaving comments, but I also […]

Christian Nerds Unite!

Until a few years ago, I hid a shameful secret.  I read comic books.  Oh, sure, when found out by others I would try to ennoble my guilty pleasure by calling them “graphic novels,” but the honest truth is I love immersing myself in the Marvel and DC universes whenever I […]