I suffered from chronic back pain for years and most of the prayer ministers at my church knew it. During that season I was a regular recipient of prayer during Communion on Sunday mornings. One Sunday morning I walked into church particularly discouraged, almost unable to find the words to even ask– again– for healing. But I […]
It took about 3 months to finish this one phone call. When I was done, I had written a book called The Rector and the Vestry. It is available on Amazon.
In November of 2019, I was speaking with a friend and colleague in ministry. He is the Rector of a small but growing […]
So, should you preach Mother’s Day sermons? In a word, yes. This year (2021), let me say it even more strongly, “You’d better!”
In college, I was a medical technology major for about a semester. During the school year, I found a low-paying job at the local hospital to work in the lab as a helper. One morning, I met a pathologist who invited me to come to help with an autopsy. So I did.
That was my […]
Pastors often struggle to discern how to advocate for social change when public advocacy is so fraught with the possibilities of violence, division, and partisan power.
Pastor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, led a movement for social change in racial inequality and oppression, poverty injustice, and unjust warfare. He did so as a pastor and leader and his decision to lead […]
When will we be back to some kind of normal?
Generally, January is annual report time for Anglican Churches. Most churches will have an annual meeting to update the congregation on the past year and the plan for this year. Budgets will be discussed. Vestry members (or parish council members) will be elected. ACNA parishes will fill out their congregational report […]
Does changing your habits change your life? Can you become healthier, happier, or holier if you incorporate new, small daily habits into your life?
I decided to start this year off with a new habit. I have to work out regularly because I have arthritis. If I don’t work out, I […]
It is that time of year when new Vestry members are elected, selected, and then seated as their congregation’s leadership board. Usually, there is an outgoing class of three or four making up one-third of the total Vestry. And of course, after the election or selection process in a parish, there is an incoming class of three or four.
That is […]
The Pandemic Pastor
Ministry life can be overwhelming at any time, but with a pandemic, the pressure is even greater. I’ve been working with pastors as a canon for the past eight years, but this past year has been the most stressful for pastors I’ve ever seen.
When I experienced burnout ten years ago, I had many supporters who helped me find […]
Even if your shopping is complete and the gifts are wrapped, the pastor knows that there is one more thing to do before Christmas morning. Hold Christmas Eve Services.
Whether you are preaching, celebrating the Eucharist, leading the prayers, singing the carols, handing out bulletins, or greeting people at the door, it is a big moment in the annual life cycle […]
Christmas Eve is rough on preachers; at least for this one.
The atmosphere for a truly great sermon is all there: scenery, families, music, lighting, Scripture, attendance, joy, and a holy hope in every heart and on every face. But my Christmas Eve sermons (33 and counting) are never equal to this setting. They always seem weak […]
How to Pastor Converts from Islam: An Interview with Duane Miller about His New Book, “I Will Give Them an Everlasting Name”
The following is an interview with Anglican Compass author Duane Miller about his new book, I Will Give Them an Everlasting Name: Pastoral Care for Christ’s Converts from Islam.
How might this book help an Anglican pastor on the ground in ministry?
Anglican churches, schools, […]
Getting Ready for 2021
End the Year Strong is a new resource from the Evergreen Project! You can download it for free on The Evergreen Project website. Getting ready for 2021 is vital for wrapping up 2020. Start looking ahead now. Spend some time praying and dreaming! In May of 2020, Tim Keller did a webinar with Francis Collins through […]
Take Stock of 2020
The Evergreen Project began precisely to help churches grow for the kind of difficult days we have faced together in 2020. It is the hope of Archbishop Foley Beach and founders of this movement to help churches become “evergreen,” that is, green at all times. You have probably learned a lot about your congregation […]
“Sermons aren’t commentaries, sermons are events” (14).
This statement from J. Brandon Meeks encapsulates the message of his new book, The Foolishness of God: Reclaiming Preaching in the Anglican Tradition (affiliate link). This collection of essays possesses rich reflection on preaching from a brilliant man. To me, The Foolishness of God is a […]
Do you know about The Evergreen Project?
The Evergreen Project is an initiative of the Anglican Church in North America to help pastors and congregations grow in generosity and stewardship ministry. The main work of the Evergreen Project is collecting, creating, and curating the best resources for a thriving church.
When most of us think of “youth ministry,” there are usually several classic images that come to mind: goofy games, contemporary worship music with lots of energy, young youth ministers with cool clothes, and big summer church camps. While these things can be good (and I’m sure a lot of us have plenty of nostalgic youth group memories […]
One summer during college I thought it would be fun to sew a dress for myself. I only succeeded because my grandmother intervened to rescue the project. Her generation still had a muscle memory for homegrown and homemade goods. I grew up shopping for what I needed. Our consumer economy trains us to buy, not to make.
Teach Youth Hard Stuff: Why You Should Strive for Deep and Difficult Content in Your Student Ministry
Kids aren’t stupid. Today’s teenagers face more pressure to learn well and succeed academically than ever before. AP and IB programs around the country treat high school students like college students in the amount and difficulty level of the work assigned to them.
Outside of the classroom, students are exposed to a host of heavy and difficult concepts in the news, […]
We are living in some of the most challenging times the church has faced in recent decades. If truth be told, many leaders find themselves at a loss in times of crisis. One thing is for sure; we live in a different world than we did a few months ago, and things probably will never go back to the way […]
What does quality pastoral care look like? How many pastors, priests, and deacons receive training that adequately equips them to aid healing rather than add new wounds to the emotional and spiritual lives of people in their care?
As a priest’s wife and an observer by nature, I could offer a little perspective. But as someone who has experienced dire need […]
If your church is just riding out the pandemic, hoping that you can get back to normal, you are missing the opportunity of the century to reimagine the ministry of your congregation for the century ahead.
The main activity of every congregation has been upended. Sunday worship, which has been the core of church life for 2000 in most places, is […]
We live in a strange world where things like pandemics and protests seem to be the new norm. Since March 2020, the world has radically changed and will continue to change in the coming days ahead. Andy Crouch, Kurt Keilhacker, and Dave Blanchard describe the effects of COVID-19 as an economic and cultural blizzard, winter, and the beginning of […]