Facebook, Retirees, and Church

Robert Saler, Research Fellow and administrator with the Center for Pastoral Excellence at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, recently blogged about how his experience as a pastor of a congregation comprised primarily of retirees challenged his assumptions about their use of social media.  As a younger pastor, he entered the parish assuming that leveraging Facebook as a part of the congregation's ministry would require heavy lifting by young adults.  In his experience, those over Read More …

Ministry Job Musts

Adam McLane, a Partner at The Youth Cartel and Principal at McLane Creative, recently blogged about two things  youth ministers needs to consider in order to retain their current employment: metrics/measurables and donor relations.  Speaking bluntly he suggests that by managing these two areas well one can eliminate "90% of the reasons my friends have gotten fired." So What? Like any type of employment, ministry positions involve (or, at least should involve) periodic evaluation.  The Read More …

Review of Viral

Meet the Author Leonard Sweet is the E. Stanley Jones professor of evangelism at Drew University and visiting distinguished professor of Evangelism at George Fox University, was voted one of the 50 Most Influential Christians in America, and continues to write and speak prophetically about the church.  An ordained United Methodist pastor, Sweet has authored over 20 books and 600 articles, and is perhaps best known for his forward thinking ideas about the church.  For more information, check Read More …

Fashion Friday

Since I lived in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area for many years, I am no stranger to the strangeness of megachurch pastor Ed Young.  Earlier this year, I even mentioned his one-of-a-kind "bed-in" here on sowhatfaith.com.  Given what I know of him, I am convinced Young is the ideal poster boy for the "bigger is better" and/or "flashier is more fun" model of church.  Given such, perhaps one of his latest ventures will equip a new generation of pastors to be more fashion Read More …

High School Ministry – Defining Success

Lutheran (ELCA) pastor Rich Melheim is the founder and chief creative officer of Faith Inkubators, which he describes as "a Christian education systems design think tank and resource provider dedicated to incubating faith every night in every home."  In the February 22, 2012 edition of the Christian Century, he answered several questions regarding faith formation as a family matter, including one about high school youth ministry. Q: How do you define a successful church program for high Read More …

The Other Half

Protestant churches have done exceptionally well among those who are married and even better among those who are married and have children.  These groups, as a percentage of the total American population, have been shrinking for decades and likely will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. The latest data from the Pew Research Center shows that only half of adults (51%) aged 18 and older were married in 2010.  Additionally, the median age for first marriage has risen steadily over the Read More …

Renter or Owner: The Mindset Matters

Robert Talbert, Associate Professor of Mathematics at Grand Valley State University, recently blogged about the difference between renting and owning.  After sharing his own experiences with home ownership and rental, he applies the principle to education suggesting that we all want students to own rather than rent their education.  He explains the different approaches thusly: The rental mindset says, I am paying the rent, and as long as I pay, I expect the management to take care of my needs. Read More …

What About Twitter is Appealing?

Carol Howard Merritt, a Presbyterian pastor and the author of Tribal Church: Ministering to the Missing Generation (2007 - read my review here) and Reframing Hope: Vital Ministry in a New Generation (2010 - read my review here), recently was interviewed by the Christian Century.  Among other things, she was asked to "say more about what you find so appealing about Twitter."  Her response, in part, follows: I use Twitter in a couple of ways. It's a news stream for me . . . As a pastor, I use Read More …

Blurry Lines

Francine Hardaway is "an experienced marketing strategist with special expertise in startup companies," a "geek-to-human translator," and the co-founder of Stealthmode Partners. In a recent blog post she shared how to make your business more successful: The root cause of any business failure is the neglect of a simple, ancient Buddhist idea: the line where I end and you begin is blurry. As the Beatles used to sing, “I am you and you are me together.” As the founder of a business, the line Read More …