What the Church Needs to Learn from U2

u2-songs of innocence

I woke up this morning with an email from U2 announcing that they are giving away copies of their new studio album to every iTunes user—that’s half a billion people in 119 countries. The album doesn’t go on sale in digital or physical form for another month. And while this is heavily subsidized by Apple […]

How You Eat It

Photo by Bobinson K B

I preached this sermon yesterday at the 4:00 jazz worship service at Fourth Presbyterian Church. The scripture reading was Exodus 12:1-14. You can listen to an audio recording here: How You Eat It (9.7.2014) Imagine, if you will, a favorite family meal. Think about a holiday gathering for which your family might prepare a generous […]

Less Programming, More Networking

YM Network

Several years ago Mark Oestreicher called for a shift in youth ministry from program-based approaches to what he called Youth Ministry 3.0, grounded in affinity groups, contextualization, and missional engagement (read my short review of his book here.) Marko’s suggestions have provided a foundation for my thinking about youth ministry in recent years. One of […]

Post-Christendom Youth Ministry Blues

Post-Christendom Blues

Like youth workers around the country, I’m busy making final plans for the beginning of a new youth ministry program year: recruiting volunteers, putting together calendars, planning curricula. This will be my fourteenth year of youth ministry, and it gets harder every year. Youth and adults keep getting busier. Each year there are more and […]

Go Big or Go Home?

go BIG or go home

As a way to introduce our congregation to the new Glory to God Presbyterian hymnal, the Daily Devotions at Fourth Presbyterian Church are currently based on hymn lyrics. I wrote the following devotion based on a stanza of George Croly’s “Spirit of God, Descend upon My Heart.” I ask no dream, no prophet ecstasies, no […]