Tales of Two Cities

Dissonance

I preached this sermon at the assembly of the Presbytery of Chicago this past Saturday. Okay, before I say what I’m going to say, I want you to do something. We’re going to start this sermon with a bit of congregational participation, which I know makes most Presbyterians freak out. But here’s what I want […]

Mutual Forbearance

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My next two weeks will be saturated with Presbyterianism. Tomorrow will be my third assembly as Moderator of the Presbytery of Chicago. I’m hoping we can continue to build on the energy and enthusiasm we experienced in April after a very contentious and difficult assembly in February. In addition to preparing for and leading this […]

Struggling with Exile at #NEXTChurch2014

My notes from Tuesday morning at NEXT 2014

The two and a half days I spent at the 2014 NEXT Church National Gathering were refreshing and inspiring. I want to make a few general comments about the conference before diving into the theme that I wrestled with the most. I’ve now been to all of the NEXT national gatherings except last year (including […]

Presbyterianism as a Relational Network?

Image by Andy Lamb

I keep finding myself involved in projects aimed at re-imaging what it means to be Presbyterian in our rapidly changing world. I served on the first Mid Councils Commission of the 219th General Assembly, charged with studying and making recommendations to update our system of presbyteries and synods. I then served on a task force […]

Toward a Better Connectionalism

Image by Steve Jurvetson

When asked what it is about Presbyterianism that people most value,  connectionalism always emerges as an essential element of this way of being Christian. Yet no one really seems to know what this means. Some might quote the Book of Order: “Congregations of the Presbyterian Church (USA), while possessing all the gifts necessary to be […]