• Book Reviews 11 hours ago

    The Way of Grace (bookmark)

    The Way of Grace (bookmark)

    by Roy Howard
    by Glandion Carney with Marjean Brooks  InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, Ill. 152 pages  The book is what the title suggests: a description of the way God’s grace unfolded for the author after his diagnosis with Parkinson’s disease. That shattering moment opened for him an experience with God that he never intended, but now shares with others in a lovely manner. A priest in the Anglican tradition and a spiritual director long associated with the Renovare movement of spiritual formation, Carney confesses to his congregation: “I have Parkinson’s disease. I have been covering… continue reading...
    ShareShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail to someone
  • Outpost Blog 11 hours ago

    The future of the church

    The future of the church

    by Jennifer Barchi
    “The young people are the future of the church!” I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve heard this phrase. It’s said of young(ish) pastors, youth, young adults, children; it’s said at conferences and in classrooms, by church members and experts; it’s said seriously and with qualification (yes, they are the future of the church, but don’t forget that they’re also the present of the church). It’s said so widely and so often that it has become cliché, and I find that I now expect Spirit-led inspiration from the younger… continue reading...
    ShareShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail to someone
  • Book Reviews 3 days ago

    Calling and Clarity: Discovering What God Wants for Your Life

    Calling and Clarity: Discovering What God Wants for Your Life

    by Doug Koskela Wm. B. Eerdmans, Grand Rapids, Mich. 136 pages REVIEWED BY JAMES F. CUBIE  If someone in your congregation believes she has a call to ministry; if a young adult wants to know what his calling might be; if you are a Christian of many years, and understand what your vocation — your calling — is; if, after many years of working in another field, you feel called to ministry, “Calling and Clarity: Discovering What God Wants for Your Life” by Doug Koskela is the book to read.… continue reading...
    ShareShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail to someone

May 11, 2015: Digital issue for subscribers (Pentecost)

197-10 cover

The digital issue of the Presbyterian Outlook’s May 11, 2015 issue is now available!  It is viewable on almost all computers, tablets, and smartphones. Click here to view the digital issue. BEING CHRISTIAN IN THE 21st CENTURY “Religion must (simply must!) speak in the language of the culture in which it exists,” says Phyllis Tickle. She explains why that is so and reveals some of the challenges and hopes for people of faith in the morphing, shifting 21st century. GLOBAL PERSPECTIVES ON PENTECOST Two PC(USA) mission co-workers share expressions of Pentecost alive in Israel-Palestine and Latin America. NEXT CHURCH CONFERENCE HIGHLIGHTS DIVERSITY & INNOVATION Over 600 gathered this spring to share ideas about their hopes for the church. Leslie Scanlon reports.   … [Read more...]

The Way of Grace (bookmark)

The way of Grace

by Glandion Carney with Marjean Brooks  InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, Ill. 152 pages  The book is what the title suggests: a description of the way God’s grace unfolded for the author after his diagnosis with Parkinson’s disease. That shattering moment opened for him an experience with God that he never intended, but now shares with others in a lovely manner. A priest in the Anglican tradition and a spiritual director long associated with the Renovare movement of spiritual formation, Carney confesses to his congregation: “I have Parkinson’s disease. I have been covering up my weakness, and I need to share it openly. I’m trying to accept it as a way of grace. I hope you will pray for me.” Grace is what occurred in his congregation and in his life after that vulnerable moment. Carney is a spiritual director, and this narrative has the same gentle clarity that one might expect from a director who knows the value of leading rather than forcing. It also reminds one of the … [Read more...]

The future of the church

barchi picture

“The young people are the future of the church!” I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve heard this phrase. It’s said of young(ish) pastors, youth, young adults, children; it’s said at conferences and in classrooms, by church members and experts; it’s said seriously and with qualification (yes, they are the future of the church, but don’t forget that they’re also the present of the church). It’s said so widely and so often that it has become cliché, and I find that I now expect Spirit-led inspiration from the younger members of our congregation – and they never disappoint! Perhaps it is just pastorly pride talking, but I feel as though I serve a particularly gifted contingent of exceptional young people. The phrase that I’ve never heard anyone utter, not even in jest, is, “The octogenarians are the future of the church!” Sure, we expect our platinum crowned members to hold onto our history, to remind us of where we’ve been and what’s been central to our identity in the past, but how … [Read more...]

Do the holy work required to end racism (stated clerk’s column)

gradyeparsons

If you go to a university that is known for the song “Rocky Top,” then it would seem likely that you might study geology. Geology met my science requirement. So I have some understanding of how the earthquake in Nepal happened. The Indian subcontinent plate pushed against and under the Eurasian plate. The constant crashing of the two plates formed and continues to form the Himalayan mountain range. There is already Internet speculation on how the earthquake might have changed the height of Mount Everest. Dr. Lung S. Chan of the University of Hong Kong said, “Earthquakes dissipate energy, like lifting the lid off a pot of boiling water. But it builds back up after you put the lid back on.” These geological stories can frame how we look at Baltimore. The forces of poverty, hopelessness, and race crash into institutions, economic disparity, and racism. Another Black young man dies in an arrest. Protests turn violent. The National Guard trucks arrive along with all the television … [Read more...]

Calling and Clarity: Discovering What God Wants for Your Life

Calling and Clarity- Discovering What God Wants for Your Life

by Doug Koskela Wm. B. Eerdmans, Grand Rapids, Mich. 136 pages REVIEWED BY JAMES F. CUBIE  If someone in your congregation believes she has a call to ministry; if a young adult wants to know what his calling might be; if you are a Christian of many years, and understand what your vocation — your calling — is; if, after many years of working in another field, you feel called to ministry, “Calling and Clarity: Discovering What God Wants for Your Life” by Doug Koskela is the book to read. This is — simply put — a superb, short, theologically substantial take on two of our favorite Presbyterian words: calling and vocation. It’s a keeper, and should come off the shelf often. It looks like it’s just available in paperback. So laminate it. “Calling and Clarity” will work especially well with young adults, as the author’s experience with undergraduates shines through admirably (Koskela is associate professor of theology at Seattle Pacific University and is their associate dean for … [Read more...]

The three Ps: Policies, personnel and patience

deyerle

This month we asked our bloggers what they wish they’d known as they graduated seminary and began their ministry. Here are their answers. Tips for graduating seminarians – these lists can become quite long! I have never been one to fault seminaries for not being able to teach every skill required to be a pastor in the course of three short years. Although my seminary education was invaluable, many of the skills most needed for good ministry are ones that I have come to realize can only be built over a lifetime of service. Trustworthiness, spiritual discipline and compassion cannot be measured by exams, and wisdom usually comes with the cost of experience. But, while I continue to focus on becoming a pastor truly worthy of the congregation I serve, I have carved out a few areas of wisdom seminary didn’t cover that I have found useful to pay attention to in the meantime. 1) Policies — No one ever told me in seminary how handy a well-written policy manual would be. Well, they might … [Read more...]

Tagged With: seminary grad tips