Are You Cultivating Your Church Or Fertilizing It? #SlowChurch

I don’t know any pastors or church leaders that want the ministry of their church to be a flash in the pan for the spiritual lives of disenfranchised sometimes church-goers. We all say that we want a ministry that lasts, even into eternity. But somehow many of us still resort to microwaving discipleship and producing worship services. [Read more…]

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To A Student At Graduation Time: An Open Letter From The University Chaplain

Photo Courtesy of Hagerstown Community College

Photo Courtesy of Hagerstown Community College

Dear Student,

You are leaving this place for new adventures and new responsibilities. Some of that is exciting and some of it is scary. Some of it is just unknown.

But you can be certain of one thing. The relationships that have been so meaningful for you while you have been here are about to change radically.  [Read more…]

3 Things To Look For In A Mentor: A Tribute To My Own Mentors

20140111-225324.jpgIn my work as a University Chaplain, I talk a lot with students about having a good mentor and becoming a good mentor to another. One of the findings of the National Study of Youth and Religion is that only committed religious parents can have more impact on the religious faithfulness of young people than adult mentors. Mentors matter.

[Read more…]

God Is NOT With Us: An Advent Sermon

Advent_Reminds2[1]I believe a Christian can give only one response to the difficult question of suffering. This place is not what God had in mind and he will in fact set the whole world to rights one day…we pray that it comes quickly.

[Read more…]

It Takes More Than a Dollar to End Hunger

A really brilliant student with which I had the joy of sharing a trip to Sierra Leone, West Africa shared this on Facebook this week: “After ordering five things and two drinks from Taco Bell for my roommate and I, the guy asks me if I want to donate a $1 to “end world hunger”… well, when you say it like that… of course I will donate a dollar. My trip to taco bell just saved the world. What have you done today?”
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Chipotle’s “Scarecrow” and Theology: What the Church Can Learn About Witness From a Burrito

Chipotle has taken a risky marketing strategy, but one that is likely to be popular among Millenials. Both the Church and marketers have failed to reach these young people in the past because the slick campaigns that worked with their parents just appeared to them to be inauthentic. The marketing challenge for Chipotle will be convincing their audience that they embody the cultural critique that they are communicating. I’m not a marketing guy, so you would do better reading the marketers’ commentary if we want to think about what Chipotle is doing here.

I’m more concerned with what these story tellers can show us about the values of the Millennials that they are targeting. I’m not going to provide much commentary on the content that is best available here, so you really should watch it before you read what I think the Church can learn.

[Read more…]