Preaching To Confront Racism

By William H. Willimon Moralism (substituting law for gospel, exhorting better human behavior without dependency upon God’s grace) is no match for racism. While urging us to preach justice, Lutheran James Childs warns: “Preaching that always goes directly from sin to salvation or from cross to resurrection without ever stopping off at sanctification is missing […]

What to say, what to do

by F. Willis Johnson* I am a pastor, in New York City with my wife, on a few days of summer leave. Over a 24-hour period my phone, social media channels and email blew up. Your attention was arrested too. My colleagues and clergy friends are frustrated and fearful. We want to talk, and then […]

Top 5 Ways To Cope When You Want To Take This Ministry Job And Shove It

By Talbot Davis Ministry is like most occupations. There are times, in the immortal words of Johnny Paycheck, when you want to take this job and shove it. So what do you do when you’re a pastor and Mr. Paycheck is singing to you? For you? Well, as a survivor of a few of those […]

Ministry Matters: The rise of the “Methodist middle”

According to the New Testament book of Acts, surprising the church is the Holy Spirit’s idea of a good time.

My consistent prayer for our General Conference has been that the Spirit would once again surprise the church by opening a new or unexpected way through the conflicting convictions about same-sex relations that have divided our denomination for four decades. I described my hope for that surprise in an interview with Ministry Matters.

Blest Be The Tie That Binds

*by Bishop Scott Jones During the last four months, I have had multiple invitations to break my vows. Many people have suggested that, in the name of protesting against perceived injustice, I should disobey the discipline of The United Methodist Church and violate the sacred promises I have made at two key points in my […]

You Know You’re Ready For Young People If…

By Rebekah Simon-Peter The number one thing I hear church leaders around the country say is: We’d like to have more young people in worship. That’s a terrific aspiration. But don’t say it if you don’t mean it. Digitals (born around 1999 and onward) and millennials (born around 1982-1998) will bring their own set of […]

Leading Young People To Theologically Minded Faith

by Fred Edie This article is featured in the Youth Ministry: A Part of the Church or Apart from the Church? (Nov/Dec/Jan 2015-16) issue of Circuit Rider For too long Christians have thought of theology as an esoteric academic discipline, the province of supercilious, tenured scholars scheming behind the fortified walls of ivory towers. We […]

Why Aren’t Millennials Attending Your Church?

The American church is obsessed with reaching millennials. Well, at least we are obsessed with talking about it. I’m not entirely convinced we really want to reach them, or that we even know what “reaching” them would entail. That aside, I’ve got a good clear reason why millennials aren’t attending your church. No, no, it’s […]

Bishop Lowry on Moving Through The Issues of the Church

Bishop Mike Lowry of the Central Texas Conference sits down with Ministry Matters to discuss the issues the church faces in regards to gay marriage and clergy. He also addresses his views on how the church can move forward, who may take the leads, local church perspectives, and the obstacles to overcome within the greater […]

Duck Dynasty, defrockings, and free speech

by Shane Raynor There are two big stories blowing up on social media right now, both related to homosexuality and same-sex marriage. The most widely discussed one involves the star of the popular A&E reality showDuck Dynasty, Phil Robertson. In aninterview with GQ, Phil made some controversial remarks about homosexuality and was suspended indefinitely by the network after […]

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