By Kenneth L. Carder
“What advice do you have?” I asked a veteran bishop as I prepared to assume that same office after my election in 1992.
“Choose carefully where to be present, especially your first Sunday,” he replied. “Where you decide to be will be remembered longer than what you say or do when you get there. And, where and with whom you spend your time will shape your view of the church and your role in it.”
In a 2009 essay at the Call & Response blog at Faith & Leadership, Lillian Daniel writes about loving both the solemn mood of Advent and the fun of "cultural" Christmas, the shopping and wrapping and baking, etc.
Our North Carolina pastors will be in my prayers this coming week. Amidst all the "meaning making" you are responsible for, I pray that you get to stop and smell the evergreen branches.
Last week, Faith & Leadership published an article by Mark Miller-McLemore about clergy sabbaticals. The writer identifies a number of downsides for the congregation and staff who must hold down the fort while the senior pastor is away. The purpose of the article is not to urge against sabbaticals, but to point out some pitfalls that should be kept in mind when a pastor plans for a sabbatical.
By Kenneth Carder
Defining excellence in ministry remains a challenge. Some people suggest that the term excellence carries so much class and cultural baggage that an alternative descriptive word or phrase should be used. Faithful, fruitful, and effective seem to be the most frequently suggested substitutes.