Alban members receive a subscription to Congregations, our award-winning magazine. Our mission is to provide clergy and lay leaders with practical, research-based information and ideas for effective ministry as they grapple with an ever-changing environment. Congregations is sent quarterly to all members of the Alban Institute. It is the successor to Action Information, published since 1975.
“I cannot recommend this magazine and this institute to you highly enough!” — The Rev. Jan Smith Wood, Dean of Students, Church Divinity School of the Pacific.
Alternative Pastoral Model (Member Only Article)
C. Jeff Woods explores seven alternative models to pastoral ministry, requiring varying degrees of change within the congregational system. Each model assumes a full-time compensation package for the pastor, but encourages multiple sources of income.
Is This Pastor John? (Member Only Article)
Calls for financial assistance can be daunting for clergy. John Kenneth Gibson suggests that praying with those who call, and setting appropriate boundaries, transform these calls from an economic transaction into a healing pastoral encounter.
Interim Ministry (Member Only Article)
Anthony B. Robinson questions how interim ministries need to be reframed and refocused in order to be faithful and effective for churches riding the white-waters of contemporary cultural change. It’s time to revise the classic “five tasks of the interim” with a new focus and task set.
Paging God: Working with Chaplains in Healthcare (Member Only Article)
Wendy Cadge describes the work chaplains do in hospitals and suggests better ways for local clergy to work with them as partners.
Leaders are Lovers (Read Now)
Herbert Anderson explains the differences between bonds and boundaries—and how the two are deeply connected through love.
The Leading Edge
Alban Institute president James P. Wind debates the importance of congregations in the community, citing two new articles on congregational life in The Washington Post.
Tim Shapiro, president of the Indianapolis Center for Congregations, questions how Indiana can have such thriving congregations in a country where religion is declining.
Alban Institute senior consultant Dan Hotchkiss argues that congregations need to require more of their members by raising mutual expectation.
Alban Institute senior consultant Lawrence Peers advises congregants to embrae conflict rather than avoid it.