The art of getting better

If we take Luke 2:52 seriously, even Jesus improved as he matured. “And Jesus increased in wisdom and years, and in divine and human favor,” the verse reads. Knowing how to get better over time is a critical quality for…

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The church and the gift of Black history

The annual celebration known as Black History Month began as “Negro History Week” in 1926. Historian Carter G. Woodson picked the timing for this commemorative week to coincide with the birthdates of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, two figures who…

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Preaching is leadership

Preaching gives pastors an incredible opportunity that most leaders do not have. At their best, sermons teach, inspire and provoke, which are three essentials for leadership and change. Whatever approach we use for sermon planning, preparation and delivery, preaching has the potential…

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Sharing in the pursuit of racial justice

What does it mean for a congregation — particularly a predominantly white congregation — to participate in the work of racial justice? In this week’s Weekly, we begin with the stories of three congregations that are excavating their pasts and finding…

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CenterView: How Your Congregation Learns

by Tim Shapiro  Congregations, or perhaps more precisely, congregational leaders, need to learn new skills all the time. Such are the demands on congregational life. What do you do when your congregation either needs or chooses to do something new?…

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Pastor as Teacher, Congregation as Learning Community

Part of what drew me to the ordained ministry was a particular image of that calling: the minister as a field-based teacher and scholar. It is in many ways a rabbinic model. Rabbi means “teacher.” Rabbis were teachers who were…

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Toward Transformative Continuing Education

How many times have you come home from continuing education events, laid your folders and notes on your desk, become consumed in the demands of everyday ministry, and—six months later—found those notes and thought, “Oh, I remember that event. What…

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