"Progressive Christians do a good job with issues like LGBT rights," says Dennis Sanders of First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Minneapolis. "But we're less good at helping people become disciples of Jesus."
My wife works as a vegetable farmer; she's also pursuing ordination in the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago. The diocese just launched a magazine, and the first issue includes a short profile of Nadia and her work. Here's an excerpt:
My grandfather was at his 60th class reunion. During a round of golf with three classmates, one of his friends teed off. After hitting the ball, with his club still in the air, the man said, “Gentlemen, you’ll have to excuse me.” Then he fell to the ground, dead.
My grandfather recounted this, adding, “And it was a nice shot.”
Advent’s scripture passages are about genuine rescue. But I wonder whether we’re sometimes embarrassed to preach about genuine rescue because we are embarrassed to admit we’re having a genuine emergency.
What do young people look for in church? In research done in 250 congregations among people ages 15–29, respondents repeatedly said they were looking for congregations that were “welcoming, accepting, belonging, authentic, hospitable, and caring.” The researchers began to call this set of concerns the “warmth cluster.” Worship bands and ministry programs are not a priority, nor is busyness. Even “niceness” doesn’t work with young people. What they apparently seek at church is a sense of family, which calls for intergenerational relationships (Washington Post, September 6).