Retiring Clergy – End of an Era

The youngest Baby Boomers reached retirement age in 2011.   10,000 Boomers a day will hit that milestone every day through the year 2030.  While not all will retire upon turning 65, it is reasonable to expect a good number will retire at some point not long thereafter. Clergy Retirement Boom Charles M. Austin's cover story in the latest edition of "The Lutheran," illustrates the significance of Boomer retirements in the life of the Lutheran church.  More specifically, he cites statistics Read More …

Boomers = End of Senior Adult Ministry

Thom Rainer, president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources, recently shared five implications for local churches as boomers retire.  Since the youngest boomers have already started retiring, it is important that all congregations pay attention to how the coming wave of retirees will change the church.  While I agree with his list, I am especially interested in the final item since it is not talked about as often as the others. Retiring Boomers will kill traditional church senior adult Read More …

Review of Faithful Generations

Meet the Author John R. Mabry is a pastor, spiritual director, musician, professor, and author.  Since 1994, he has served Grace North Church (affiliated with the National Association of Congregational Christian Churches, and are currently in-care with the United Church of Christ) in Berkeley, CA.  Since 1999, he has been in private practice as a spiritual director, directing those of differing generations.  Mabry teaches spiritual guidance, world religions, and comparative theology at John Read More …

No Generation Left Behind: Social Media in Ministry

Earlier this year I wrote about generational differences in online activity based on data from a Pew Research Center study that showed how many people in each generation participate in various online activities.  The percentage of people who participate in a given category tends to decline from generation to generation, but even the oldest generations still engage in a significant amount of online activity.  Increasingly the digital divide or gap between those who have access and those who lack Read More …

Lead by Letting Go

The Reverend Canon Dr. Frederick W. Schmidt, Jr. is an Episcopal Priest, Director of Spiritual Formation and Anglican Studies and Associate Professor of Christian Spirituality at Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University.  Previously he served as Canon Educator, Director of Programs in Spirituality and Religious Education, and Acting Program Area Manager at Washington National Cathedral.  He is the author of seven books as well as numerous scholarly articles and book chapters. Read More …