Becoming an Affectively Competent Congregation

I am an educated white clergyman of European descent (half Hungarian with some Transylvanian and Irish thrown in). When I grew up, we didn’t talk at all about feelings in our family, and the patterns of emotional expression were pretty…

Read More

Transforming the Spirit of Communities

One fall CiRCLe M (Centre for Rural Community Leadership and Ministry), a nonprofit I direct, organized a conference on the church and community development. In workshops, worship, and conversation, one church leader after another shared stories of how their congregations…

Read More

Neighbors and Covenant Relationships

Stu was one of the first people to help me see that the patient work of discernment was a big part of what I was called to do. I was right out of seminary at the time. I thought that…

Read More

Pastoral Care as Healing Presence

A single parent, Deborah recalls that during her first month as pastor of a United Church of Christ congregation in Western Pennsylvania, she performed nine funerals, four of which related to a boating accident. Already weary from moving across country…

Read More