An Episcopal priest and longtime runner wonders what would happen if church was a ‘spiritual training center,’ a place that combines a drop-in feel with an established routine and considers anew how and why we gather together.
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As she hovers over her toddling 15-month-old daughter, a seminary professor learns that leading and following are frequently intertwined. Watching, listening, paying close attention, this hybrid form of leadership follows life.
How can pastors connect more deeply to the lives of laity? They can begin with visitation and prayer, writes the president of Fuller Theological Seminary.
Influential laypeople yearn for deep relationships with Christian institutional leaders. We can nurture those relationships by entering the worlds where laypeople live, think and work -- not seeing them primarily as church volunteers and funders.
The church needs vital leaders who can convince people in the pews to move beyond the church’s four walls and be involved in Christ’s life in the world, says the new head of the UMC General Board of Higher Education and Ministry.
The Rev. John Heinemeier retired from ministry after 45 years, then returned to work and became the part-time vicar of St. Cyprian’s Episcopal Church in Oxford, N.C. Photo by York Wilson
St. Cyprian’s Episcopal Church in Oxford, N.C., illustrates a new model for underserved churches: active laity and retired pastors.
Pastors need to fight the impulse to fulfill congregants’ unrealistic expectations. In order to do that, they must understand that they are players in a number of powerful systems that reward such behavior, writes Nelson Granade.