Top 10 Books of 2016

There are so many good books published every year.  The best of the best among those I read this year follow in my seventh annual listing of my top ten books of the year. Top 10 Books of 2016 Author Title Lillian Daniel Tired of Apologizing for a Church I Don’t Belong To Robert P. Jones The End of White Christian America Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu, and Douglas Carlton Abrams The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World Brian McLaren The Great Spiritual Read More …

Summer Reading: Changes Ahead

In recent days I have heard the three words "back to school" enough times to know that summer is drawing to a close for many of my readers.  With the change of seasons in mind, I offer the ten best books I read this summer: (5+) The End of White Christian America by Robert P. Jones (Simon & Schuster, 2016) (5) Raising the Floor: How a Universal Basic Income Can Renew Our Economy and Rebuild the American Dream by Andy Stern (Public Affairs, 2016) (5) Vital Vintage Church: How Read More …

Marketing, Mission & Money

Last weekend First Congregational Church (Winter Park, FL) welcomed Cameron Trimble and Michael Piazza of the Center for Progressive Renewal.  They led a workshop for leaders from churches across Florida focused on marketing, mission and money - three of the most challenging issues facing the church today. While I was unable to attend, I benefited from it by reading some of the quotes Sarah Lund, Regional Minister of the Western Region of the Florida Conference of the United Church of Christ, Read More …

Time to Be Church

After 23 years at the Cathedral of Hope (UCC) in Dallas, TX, Michael Piazza accepted a call to the Virginia-Highland Church (UCC) earlier last year.  In addition to his pastoral ministry in a congregational context, Piazza serves as co-executive director of the Center for Progressive Renewal and as president of Hope for Peace & Justice.  In the latter role, he wrote these challenging words earlier this week: The progressive church has a long and noble history of engaging the political Read More …

Restoring the Mainline’s Prophetic Voice

After 23 years at the Cathedral of Hope (UCC) in Dallas, TX, Michael Piazza accepted a call to the Virginia-Highland Church (UCC) earlier this year.  Piazza has been an important voice in the progressive Christian movement for many years and currently serves as Co-Executive Director of The Center for Progressive Renewal.  In theSpring/Summer edition of the Center's bi-annual publication, New Times, Piazza offers these challenging words:  The time is overdue for mainline churches to find their Read More …