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Jul. 25, 2017

The Challenge of Abundance

While many congregations long for more funds to sustain their ministries, the shadow side of stewardship is that receiving too many funds also presents a ministry conundrum. What’s the right balance of mission and saving for a rainy day? Were the right gift policies in place? How does the congregation take part of the discernment — and who should make
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Jul. 11, 2017

Extreme Heat

Stewardship, like much of ministry, quickly pushes congregations back to mission and vision. It causes us to ask questions like: What is the Spirit up to in this place? Where are hearts committed? What must we stop to make room to start a new ministry? And then, once a mission is discerned, how is that communicated to the congregation? Today’s
Nov. 06, 2013

Missional Lab: What’s the God of the Cross Up to?

By Patrick Torbit   It was a hot summer evening in New Hampshire. I was sitting cross-legged on the floor of the sanctuary of my internship  congregation. Tied to my right wrist was an orange bandana.  Surrounding me was my tribe, about fifteen energized third and fourth graders. On second thought, energized might be an understatement. It was the end
Oct. 03, 2013

Missional Lab: Roadblocks that Wreck the Church (Part 1)

By Josh Linman  “Becoming missional will save the church.” Whether we want to admit it or not, many mainline pastors and denominations are banking on this idea. In our race to become missional, we have allowed some key assumptions to endure that are actually roadblocks to renewal. Missional Assumption 1: Becoming missional should be our priority Missional Reality 1: Developing
Sep. 27, 2013

Missional Lab: Failure Is a Necessity

By Brigitte Leininger The corporate world is learning to embrace failure, turning it into a positive exploration of opportunity. This article explores the newfound mentality of what it means to fail in the secular workspace, and what that same type of failure means for the church. Is it possible to look at failure in the same way — a source
Sep. 26, 2013

Introducing Missional Lab Series: Join the Conversation

Courtney Young is a graduate of Luther Seminary – M.Div. with an emphasis in Congregational Mission and Leadership. Missional, a Millennial, and a new mother, Courtney shares her thoughts with us here:   In the spring of my senior year at Luther Seminary, I took a course called “Transforming Congregations for Mission,” taught by Mary Sue Dreier. The class launched
Sep. 26, 2013

Missional Lab: How to Help People (Like Me) Who Hate Change

By Kristin Eisele When I was seven years old my parents brought home a new set of dishes. It was awful. It was change. I cried. When we changed cars, when I had to get a new winter coat, when my favorite television program was canceled, I cried. Imagine my enthusiasm at the change required of the church in this
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May. 16, 2013

Being Church Beyond Our Walls

Did you read Amanda Nelson’s thesis yet? If not, it is posted at the bottom of the previous post. I want to commend Amanda on her work in digging into what the church needs to learn about the spiritual lives on young adults. Her stories of young adults are similar to so many stories of young people in our contexts.
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May. 06, 2013

What’s the point, anyway?

We have spent almost two months offering various perspectives on mission and service, but at the end of the day…What’s the point? I love Chicago, and a few weeks ago I has in Chicago for a meeting. Taking the train into the city and walking the streets is exciting, at least for me. As an experienced traveler, I can navigate
Featured image for “Preparation, Action, Reflection and Celebration = Transformation!”
May. 01, 2013

Preparation, Action, Reflection and Celebration = Transformation!

  Trinity Lutheran College is continuing its study on what makes service projects and mission trips transformational. It’s all part of the SALLT (Service And Learning Leadership Team) program. What they have found is so vital that they have even developed and APP to help leaders through this process. Check it out at  This information was so vital that