Missouri Synod Lutheran review of Governance and Ministry

One of the interesting things about Governance and Ministry is the interest it has generated across the religious spectrum–I’ve heard from Southern Baptists, Catholics, and Orthodox Jews as well as Unitarians, Episcopalians, and the United Church of Christ. Most recently, I enjoyed reading a recent post by Art Scherer of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. … Read more

Defining Community Ministry

Every denomination that practices “congregational polity” does so a little differently, and each seems to discover its own sticking points. For Unitarian Universalists, one persistent quandary is how to recognize and support professional ministry outside the most standard parish settings. UU ministers have long served as chaplains, community organizers, educators, and in other community roles, … Read more

From Mainline to Sideline

by Dan Hotchkiss The best way to be rich, for a character in a Jane Austen novel—indeed, the only really proper way—is to inherit land. The less fortunate escape poverty by “engaging in trade,” by which one may become respectable, if never quite genteel. Standing on a middle ground between mere tradesmen and the landed … Read more

Green Eyeshades and Rose-Colored Glasses

Congregational budget-makers frequently divide into two camps that approach the task in different ways. The first camp is likely to include children of the Great Depression, experts in finance, elementary school teachers, and persons anxious about their own money situation. Their first priority is to make sure that the budget balances and that the congregation … Read more

Charge to the minister

Charge to the minister For the installation of Tess Baumberger Unity Church, North Easton, MA March 22, 2009 by Dan Hotchkiss Tess, I’m glad you’ve come to Easton. Traditionally, the “charge to the minister” includes wise, oracular advice to the new minister from an old one. Sadly, I have no such advice to offer; if … Read more