Bricolage, COVID-19 and the Future of the Church (Part I)

Bricolage has become a wide term that was previously and more narrowly applied in the architectural, building and design trades.  The big idea is this; you often don’t have access or can’t afford the materials you wish you had to design or build something.  Bricolage is the creative use of materials already on hand toContinue reading “Bricolage, COVID-19 and the Future of the Church (Part I)”

Know What You are Going to Do! (2020 Edition) #UMCrapstorm

  I have played competitive softball since I was fourteen years old at every imaginable level.  Up to a handful of years ago, I played over a hundred games each season and now in my late fifties, I still play twenty or thirty.  For much of that time I was a shortstop.  The shortstop isContinue reading “Know What You are Going to Do! (2020 Edition) #UMCrapstorm”

Following Up Your Big Christmas Week

Social Media is a great tool to keep up with what God is doing in churches far and near.  I love reading each and every glowing report! Many churches had great attendance for Christmas Week and I rejoice with them!  Clearly God was moving. Bam! However, failure to effectively follow up major “victories” (like a recordContinue reading “Following Up Your Big Christmas Week”

Musings on the UMC and the Wesleyan Covenant Association

For years, I stood in the middle ground of the United Methodist Church.  Right-middle to be sure but middle none-the-less.  My plan was to batten down the proverbial hatches, keep Christ Church growing (we have grown for twenty-one consecutive years) and hope the denominational storm would pass.  When asked about my lack of denominational positioning,Continue reading “Musings on the UMC and the Wesleyan Covenant Association”

Why I Really, Really, Really Like Millennials

We do an effective job at reaching Millennials at Christ Church.  We don’t do as effective a job as the churches designed to do nothing but reach Millennials but we do pretty well.  We are committed to being a multi-generational and racially diverse congregation and we are finding that many Millennials like that just fine. Continue reading “Why I Really, Really, Really Like Millennials”

Hopeful Signs for United Methodists Abound in Len Wilson’s 2017 “Top 25 Fastest Growing Large Church Report”

I am thankful to Len Wilson for compiling his Top 25 each year but even more grateful for his analysis of the statistics. http://lenwilson.us/top-25-fastest-growing-large-umc-2017/ Here are a few statistics Wilson reported that I find very encouraging as a United Methodist: 1) 13 of the 25 have joined the list in the past two years! We haveContinue reading “Hopeful Signs for United Methodists Abound in Len Wilson’s 2017 “Top 25 Fastest Growing Large Church Report””

Does the American Church Have a Future?

Does the American Church Have a Future? Fifteen years ago everyone was using the word “post-modern.” I used it a lot. Made me feel like a hipster preacher before there were hipster preachers.  I had more hair back then.  It was an easier sell. The definition of post-modern generally centered upon the premise that the modernContinue reading “Does the American Church Have a Future?”

The Essence of Church Leadership

The Essence of Church Leadership Know Where You Are Realism Know Where You Are Going Vision Have a Plan Strategy Move the People Motivation STEP ONE: WHERE WE ARE           Where We Are: The real disasters I see in leadership occur when leaders do not have a realistic sense of where the congregation truly stands concerningContinue reading “The Essence of Church Leadership”

The Awesome Rev. Jones (Navigating Change)

The Awesome Rev. Jones (Navigating Change) All churches think they want to grow but the reality is that they don’t want a “catch so great their nets begins to tear.”  That is hard on everyone.  As God has given Christ Church massive catches over the years, I have discovered four things that are as painfulContinue reading “The Awesome Rev. Jones (Navigating Change)”

Should Pastors Talk Politics?

Should Pastors Talk Politics? Rev. Shane Bishop I am not a real political guy. I think it is Jimmy Carter’s fault. When I was in early-high school Jimmy Carter ran for President. It was the Bi-Centennial and every fire hydrant in DuQuoin, Illinois was painted red, white and blue. Patriotism was surging after sitting outContinue reading “Should Pastors Talk Politics?”