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Start strengthening older adult ministry in the new year!

The new year ushers in an opportunity for church leaders to take a fresh look at how their churches are engaged in ministry for and with older adults. It’s time that we think beyond monthly potluck luncheons and daytrips to ensure that that there’s a ministry plan involving older adults in every life stage, from […]

Aging Well: The Island of Misfit Toys

I just returned from a trip to see my grandsons, ages three and five. Like most preschoolers, they were getting very excited about Christmas. Each morning, they rushed to turn on the Christmas tree lights before opening their Advent calendar. Every time we sang “Away in a Manger,” the five year-old rearranged the characters in the nativity scene on […]

Life in a new “church”… from the barista’s chair

There’s a building that sits tucked away on Dyer Street in Dallas. Its name glows in handwritten font. It’s across from a popular bar but gets just as much attention from the local college students. Inside the barista’s greeting reaches you before the smell of espresso does, and the couches are arranged to make it feel more like a living room than a shop.

A Prayer for Mandiba

Merciful God, Author of salvation, Giver of every gracious gift,
we give thanks for the life and witness of your servant, Nelson Mandela…

The First Sunday in Advent — Happy New Year!

In the days to come the mountain of the Lord’s house will be the highest of the mountains. It will be lifted above the hills; peoples will stream to it. Many nations will go and say, “Come, let’s go up to the Lord’s mountain, to the house of Jacob’s God so that he may teach us his […]

Being Vital by Recovering a Lost Practice

In 2010 a study was released by the United Methodist Church that revealed that one key factor that vital congregations shared was starting and maintaining small groups. This finding is something deeply Methodist because the revival and amazing movement built by John Wesley was in many ways a small group revival. At the center of […]

Millennial myths and the real reasons people leave the church

by Shane Raynor Attention Christian bloggers and columnists. I have a favor to ask. Could you please stop speaking of young people as if they’re a homogeneous group with a single opinion on every issue? I’ve been guilty of it too. Christian writers are notorious for using Barna surveys and Pew polls as licenses to […]

Aging Well: A tribute to a veteran and servant of God

Every Friday morning you can find ninety-three year-old Ed Frazier at the Helping Hands food pantry in his hometown of Rockwall, Texas.  The former Air Force pilot is on another mission in the late years of his life. Instead of flying a Thunderbolt or an F-86, he is organizing food donations so that area families […]

Aging Well: Valuing seniors as a counter-cultural act of love

A few years ago I was having coffee and casual conversation with the marketing director of a large retirement community that has both independent and assisted living facilities on its well-manicured campus. She was a vivacious forty-something woman who was struggling to meet her quarterly sales quota. In a moment of frustration, she blurted out […]

I’m Done Fixing the Church: Turning the Future Over to God

When I find that I am spending my time and energy in ways that are out of sync with my calling, I find it helpful to dust off my ordination vows and reread them in a quiet place where I can reflect. I am always thankful to be reminded that my vows do not ask me to “fix” the church; rather, they ask me to be faithful to the church.