Happy New Year! We begin a fresh year of the Alban Weekly with a look back at the resources that resonated most with Weekly readers.

If you feel like you have spent this year continually determining – and determining again – how to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, you can see from this list of most-read articles that you are in good company. Those of us who care deeply about congregations are searching for aids to deepen our reflection on these difficult circumstances.

We hope these essays and interviews continue to encourage you and spark your imagination well into 2022.

Greeting our return when the old is gone and the new is here

As we resume in-person ways, churches are uniquely equipped to welcome people back.

By Nathan Kirkpatrick

Let’s re-envision “normal”

Along with the hard lessons of the pandemic, churches have learned things that can make them healthier for clergy and congregants.

By Alex Shea Will

Congregations should see their buildings as assets, not albatrosses

Talking about church buildings is fun for the bishop of the Diocese of Indianapolis – not just because she is trained in architecture and historic preservation, but also because it leads to questions like, “What is this congregation for?”

Interview with Jennifer Baskerville-Burrows

The next three most faithful steps

After an unprecedented year, looking ahead can feel overwhelming. The right questions and partners can help prioritize what comes next.

By David L. Odom

Living into joy, late in the pandemic

A walk by a stream prompts a writer and spiritual director to wonder: Could a fresh understanding of joy help restore us?

By Samuel Rahberg

Before you go…

The Rev. Rivers will return with a new issue next week. Until then, feel free to reach out to the Alban Weekly team at alban@duke.edu.

Peace and blessings!

David L. Odom

Director, Alban at Duke Divinity

Emily Lund

Communications Specialist, Alban at Duke Divinity

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