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Congregational Vitality

‘We don’t always have to get it right. We just need to wrestle with it’

About 20 minutes into Wednesday’s 90-minute webinar on prophetic preaching, the Rev. Dr. Kenyatta Gilbert paused to answer questions. After one about preaching in “purple” churches (a mix of political conservatives and progressives in the pews) Gilbert got this question from one of the 30 participants, a pastor also serving a purple congregation: Have I spent enough time understanding the complexity of the lamentation of these people?

Remembering more than 1,600 Delaware lives lost to COVID-19

A Garden Remembrance Memorial has been installed on the front courtyard of the Presbyterian Church of Dover, 54 S. State St., Dover, Delaware. It’s a temporary tribute, a space for healing, reflection and prayer to honor the lives of more than 1,600 Delawareans lost to COVID-19 from March 2020 to the end of May 2021.

Confronting hate at the Pride Parade

I donned a new T-shirt — imprinted with Springdale Presbyte­rian Church on the front and the watchwords “open, loving, thinking, doing” on the back — as I headed out a few years ago to walk the eight blocks from my office to the staging area. I was about to march in my first Pride Parade.

‘We must stay on the wall’

As the COVID-19 virus spread across the country, statistics show that it impacted African Americans at a disproportionally high rate. In hot spots like New York, Detroit, New Orleans, and Chicago, Blacks are dying at alarmingly high rates.

Here’s the church, here’s the steeple

John Knox Presbyterian Church in Louisville held a dry run Sunday as it seeks to reopen for in-person worship on Mother’s Day, May 9. A dozen of us — all fully vaccinated — masked up and sat only in the pews marked with green streamers to take in the dry run, worship our risen Savior and make suggestions for next week’s opener.

Fitting hybrid worship into the context of the local congregation

Highlighting worship efforts during the pandemic ranging from high-tech and labor-intensive to one church’s “Call ‘Em All” telephonic approach, Thursday’s webinar on Hybrid Ministry: The Scattered Church was a balm for clergy and worship leaders who’ve struggled mightily with pandemic-induced issues including pastoral care, trauma and self-care.

God’s not-so-frozen chosen

In the spirit of the Easter season, First Presbyterian Church in Greensboro, North Carolina has put together its first ever dancing music video. After an opening shot of the church’s Gothic Revival cathedral in the city’s historic Fischer Park District, pastors Jill Duffield, Dolly Jacobs and Neil Dunnavant are shown dancing in their robes to the music of “High Hopes” by “Panic! At the Disco.”