It’s Not Conformation: The Book

What is confirmation and why do we do it? How must we adapt youth ministry—and church in general—to meet the needs of a rapidly changing world? These are the driving questions that have shaped my ministry in recent years. Two months ago, after I preached on the final confirmation Sunday of my … Read more about It’s Not Conformation: The Book

Network Church

For the past few years I have been cultivating an approach to ministry I call "Network Church." Elements of this approach have certainly been in practice in a variety of ministry contexts for years, but this has been my way of pulling it together into a unified understanding of how to be church in … Read more about Network Church

It’s Not Conformation (Why We Do Youth Ministry)

I preached this sermon this past Sunday for the confirmation service at Fourth Presbyterian Church. It is the most straightforward articulation I have made about what I think youth ministry is and why we do it. The scripture readings were Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and Matthew 19:13-15. You can listen to an … Read more about It’s Not Conformation (Why We Do Youth Ministry)

A Lifelong Commitment to Metanoia

I preached this sermon yesterday at the First Presbyterian Church of Nebraska City as the guest of my friend Greg Bolt. He and others had invited me to Nebraska to speak at an officer training event for Homestead Presbytery and I stayed an extra day to preach at Greg's church. The text for the day, … Read more about A Lifelong Commitment to Metanoia

Contemplative Youth Ministry: God is Not an Idea

As I have been studying contemplative prayer for my own spiritual development, I have been experimenting with incorporating contemplative practices into my work with youth and in worship services. In a worship service for our youth and in our afternoon jazz service I used a version of the examen in … Read more about Contemplative Youth Ministry: God is Not an Idea

Confirmation Questions

Each year I begin our youth confirmation experience by asking our eighth grade students to write down the questions they have about God, faith, and the church. The questions they (and their adult leaders) come up with are always illuminating. Here are the questions our youth are asking this year, … Read more about Confirmation Questions