Posts Categorized: Congregations

Today’s Worship Experience

Church is where God’s family gathers ‘Prairie lessons’ help mom provide worship experience for family By Karen Milholland Alley While the apocalyptic genre might seem relatable in some ways during these times we’re living in, the characters I have found myself relating to most during the pandemic are those found in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s account… Read more »

Hopeful Church

Is healing at the core of our congregations? by N. Graham Standish As a seminary student I heard a constant refrain from our professors: Jesus came to preach and teach. It was the pretext underlying our whole seminary education as they trained us to preach and teach. It made sense to me. Isn’t that what… Read more »

The Church for Today

Are you ready for hybrid online/in-person worship? The next phase your church needs to consider  by Richard Hong  Sunday morning has become a stressful time for so many pastors who never imagined that their job would involve being an AV tech. “Hallelujah!” is the cry when the internet connection stays up and Zoom properly connects to… Read more »

Barn Boots and Blessings

And the steeple bell rang A rural church’s Holy Week witness in a pandemic by Donna Frischknecht Jackson   Frank, I really don’t think it’s a good idea to gather at the church. Yes, I know this is the holiest of weeks. You are correct. Easter is coming. Yes, I know you miss your church…. Read more »

Hopeful Church

Spiritual experiences in church A ‘no’ or a ‘yes’?   by N. Graham Standish For years, when leading retreats and seminars on spiritually transforming congregations, I’ve often asked a revealing question: How would we react to someone who told us on a Sunday morning, “Hey, I want to share an amazing experience I had the… Read more »

Hopeful Church

Are we too religious to be spiritual? By N. Graham Standish  I’m a little bit obsessed with the phrase “spiritual but not religious.” I have been ever since I first said it about myself when I was in college: “Nah … I don’t go to church. I’m spiritual but not religious.” I still said this… Read more »

Hopeful Church

The smallest things Can make the biggest difference by N. Graham Standish    “He never follows through,” the church member complained. “What do you mean?” I asked. “He’ll call and say he’s going to drop by the hospital, or check up on us later, or send us something, but he never does. I think that’s… Read more »

Gospel and Inclusivity

Reforming our churches A series on becoming intercultural congregations by Samuel Son Few weeks ago in October I had the honor to host nine intercultural leaders across our denomination, I consider these theologians who gathered some of the best theologians of our time, because doing life together with people from different cultures and races (which… Read more »

Hopeful Church

Stop telling them what you believe… Tell them why you believe by N. Graham Standish  I was knee-deep into listening on the phone to a potential church visitor when I had a sudden insight: We keep telling people WHAT we believe. What we really need to do is tell them WHY we believe. The man… Read more »

Hopeful Church

Does our leadership heal . . . or inflict pain? by N. Graham Standish  I recently talked with a frustrated and disappointed pastor who was in tremendous pain over her struggling church. As I listened to her story, I suddenly had an insight: Perhaps everyone who comes to church is in pain. Perhaps everyone who… Read more »