Ministry

Sing No Empty Alleluias

Sing No Empty Alleluias

Many of Christianity’s notable hymn text writers have been ministers, from Isaac Watts and Charles Wesley in the eighteenth century to Ruth Duck and Carolyn Winfrey Gillette in the twenty-first. The pulpit/poet connection makes sense. In their ministerial training, clergy are steeped in Scripture and theology.

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Sing No Empty Alleluias

And We Shall Learn through the Dance

It is an honor and a privilege to be asked to review Dr. Kathleen Turner’s book, And We Shall Learn through the Dance: Liturgical Dance as Religious Education. Dancer to dancer, she speaks to my heart. This is a book to savor. In fact, I am not aware of any book on liturgical dance that specifically explores the role of liturgical dance as a primary tool for education within church communities.

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Sing No Empty Alleluias

What Is Ministry But Love in Action?

What is ministry but love in action? Two children’s picture books—What Is Love? by Mac Barnett and Love by Matt de la Peña—describe the various ways love shows up in different people’s lives. Both of these books would serve as an excellent starting point for discussing the meaning of love with children and exploring how we can show love to others.

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On the Arts: Ministry of the People

On Preaching: Ordination Sermon

It’s that time of year. The officer nominating committee has met (repeatedly), the congregational meeting has been held, and newly elected elders are poised to be trained and ordained. At my smallish church, we maintain a session of eight or nine ruling elders, so our slate of nominations often includes both those previously ordained and one “newbie.”

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On the Arts: Ministry of the People

On Music: A Love Letter to Church Musicians

Dear Friend, how are you doing? To be a musician in ministry these days means that you are a survivor. You made it through a season of silence—through weeks and months without ensembles or congregations making a joyful noise together. You made it through a season of minimalism, without the usual activities and people and rhythms that keep us in sync.

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On the Arts: Ministry of the People

On Liturgy: Liturgy and Life

One recent Saturday afternoon, I opened the Notes app on my phone to make a grocery list. I opened my “Grocery List” note and read the following – Grocery List: Black beans; Corn; Climate Change; Migrants; Those who lack access to water, food, and shelter. Clearly, a prayer request list had made its way into my grocery list.

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Longer Tables, Shorter Walls: Every Gender Belongs

Longer Tables, Shorter Walls: Every Gender Belongs

About two years ago, I got ordained. My ordination service happened in the height of COVID. Everything was on Zoom. It was all women. When I say all women, I mean like, only women. Women were the elders. Women were the musicians. We had somebody who was dancing as a part of it. The leader and preacher were women. I gathered all of the women from the classis as ministers of Word and Sacrament.

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