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Poet and funeral director ponders faith, life and mortality

Whether he’s writing about his pig-valve heart transplant, introducing readers to a galley of inspiring poets and poems, or describing the hearse ride at the funeral of Seamus Heaney, Thomas Lynch has an uncanny knack for writing about death — and ultimately, life — in ways that are never morbid, sometimes humorous, but always thoughtful.

How to come out as LGBTQ when you’re Christian

As the recent United Methodist Church’s decision to tighten its ban on allowing LGBTQ clergy and performing same-sex marriage demonstrates, being LGBTQ and Christian can difficult and unwelcoming. But there is hope, and there are affirming faith communities who embrace Christians of all kinds.

Is heaven our destination after death?

When we die, we don’t go to heaven, the Rev. Dr. Tom Long told the Association of Presbyterian Church Educators earlier this month. Instead, it’s the place from which God comes to us.

Meeting busy, tired families where they’re at

One hour. More and more, that’s all that busy, tired families say they have for worship and Christian education on Sunday morning. How do pastors and church educators meet harried families where they are?

‘Looking for ways to give themselves away’

Not only do pastors have the privilege of walking alongside parishioners, “we also aid them and guide them, helping to craft and form them into disciples of Christ,” the Rev. Zeta T. Lamberson said during a workshop last week at the Association of Presbyterian Church Educators event. “That doesn’t just happen. We must be intentional and think about how to do that.”

Church revival will follow ‘killing church softly’

The titles of two workshops held last week during the Association of Presbyterian Church Educators event — “Killing Church Softly” and “Reviving Church Loudly” — together served up a vision about what intergenerational worship and Christian education could look like in the coming years.

APCE honors four gifted educators

Short testimonial films honoring each of the four educators honored Friday by the Association of Presbyterian Church Educators told the stories of experienced church workers whose dedication, talent, love and fearlessness have enhanced and even transformed the spiritual lives of perhaps thousands of Presbyterians.

‘Delivering theological education for the present age’

Described in his introduction as a lover of Waffle House and the owner of about 250 bow ties, Dr. Tony McNeill described during a Thursday talk at the Association of Presbyterian Church Educators annual event the work that he and others at Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary are developing to “deliver theological education for the present age.”