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Congregational Vitality

Mother knows best

Saying that “love leads to justice,” the Rev. Dr. Ralph B. Watkins said his mother always told him that “God is on the side of justice.”

Trail magic

One month after the Rev. Dr. Jason Brian Santos became pastor of Community Presbyterian Church in Lake City, Colorado, the small mountain town of 400 officially became a “gateway” trail town for hikers on the Continental Divide. It was already well known as one of the better towns to stop for those hiking the Colorado Trail, which runs from Denver to Durango.

Maintaining an outward focus

As the Vital Conversations series moved toward one of the most important marks of Vital Congregations — keeping the focus outward rather than inward — organizers landed four speakers for Wednesday’s session uniquely qualified to offer up their experiences and share their views.

Going where Christ went

“What does it mean to actively follow Christ?” the Rev. Carlton Johnson asked three PC(USA) church leaders during a Vital Conversation panel discussion on Lifelong Discipleship Formation Wednesday, which is one Seven Marks of Vital Congregations (see section two).

Among the most vital of conversations

Based on the new commandment Jesus gave in John 13:34, where he instructed his disciples “to love one another, just as I have loved you,” four church leaders were asked how that passage applied to vital congregations — and how this kind of love has been demonstrated or even changed during the pandemic.

‘We don’t own God or the gospel’

What is Intentional Authentic Evangelism? How is it being practiced in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)?  And how has your understanding of evangelism changed during your time in ministry?

‘Between Two Pulpits’

Presbyterians love a well-crafted sermon and well-written prayers. But the Rev. Carlton Johnson, coordinator of Vital Congregations, believes that sometimes PC(USA) congregations need to return to vibrant prayer.