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The world is changing. 

Stay up to date on the latest research, resources, and reflections exploring how to cultivate Christian faith in the 21st century. 

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Feb. 13, 2018

Financial Challenges and Leading Congregations

I’m pleased to introduce a new member of the CSL team, Catherine Malotky. Well, I’ll actually let her introduce herself in the post below! Catherine comes (back) to Luther Seminary with a wealth of experience tackling the financial challenges of leadership in the church. It’s a pleasure to now work with Catherine on Luther’s efforts to address the particular challenges
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Jan. 30, 2018

From Objectification to Embodied Stewardship

Not many have a personal stewardship journey quite as juxtaposed as our writer this week, Sarah Renfro. In today’s column she describes her journey from professional model to pastor, and where stewardship played a role. In the end, Sarah argues for an embodied stewardship that we all would do well to embrace. Yours truly, Adam Copeland, Center for Stewardship Leaders 
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Sep. 26, 2017

Stewarding our Finances

Today we return to the second iteration of the newsletter series on the new book Beyond the Offering Plate: A Holistic Approach to Stewardship. While it was tempting, for the sake of novelty, to publish an entire book on stewardship without addressing money, there was no real doubt that the book must devote a chapter to financial stewardship. I’m so
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Sep. 19, 2017

Speaking of Generosity

The question of language comes up a lot in stewardship circles. I think the search for the right words suggests our discomfort with the present realities of stewardship in congregations. Words matter, and it’s hard to find the right words that connect us to deep, meaningful realities of money, God, and giving. In today’s post, stewardship leader Karen Johnson Kretschmann
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Sep. 05, 2017

Anxious Stewardship

As fall stewardship season gets close, many church leaders approach the conversation about money, budgets, and mission with anxiety. This emotion is a reality we must face, certainly, but an unfortunate one. In today’s post, Heather Wood Davis connects this anxiety with broader cultural realities. How can our congregations shift our stewardship ministry so the first emotion isn’t anxiety? In
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Jun. 06, 2017

Stewarding Attention (III of III): Cultivating Curious Christians

In the final post of our “Stewarding Attention” series, today Jason Misselt moves to some practical suggestions congregations might employ. While on a very different level, they remind me of pastor Eugene Peterson’s old practice of putting author’s names at intentional points in his calendar. That way, when something else threatened to take his attention away, he could say, “I
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May. 30, 2017

Stewarding Attention (II of III): Train Stations & Cultural Leadership

I recently found myself exploring a new bookstore in the Minneapolis-St. Paul airport. For an airport bookstore, its selection is amazing and I could tell had been curated with an expert hand. This is no store that pushed merely the latest best-sellers. Instead, I sensed a loving, careful design behind the selections. This point hit home, particularly, when I came
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May. 09, 2017

Fear and Anger Unearthed Through Dialogue

This week we continue our Stewarding Difficult Conversations series with an author who has real experience navigating conflict. Carly Cubit applies these lessons to congregations, and urges us to embrace the challenge, even if — or, because — it’s hard work. Yours truly, Adam Copeland, Center for Stewardship Leaders Fear and Anger Unearthed through Dialogue Carly Cubit Real, intense, and
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May. 02, 2017

Tapping Into Difficult Conversations

Our Stewarding Difficult Conversations series continues this week with a post from Keith Anderson, a pastor at a diverse congregation who embraced the challenge of hosting conversations with those of differing political convictions. Not only did the participants keep speaking to one another, the experience broadened into a multi-week venture. Yours truly, Adam Copeland, Center for Stewardship Leaders Tapping Into
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Apr. 25, 2017

Breaking Our Hearts Open in the Midst of Discord

In preparation for Thanksgiving Day last November, there were dozens of articles and interviews concerning the challenges of sharing a meal — a cordial meal — with relatives and friends holding wildly differing political views. We are now in the season of Easter, but that challenge remains. I’ve been wondering what it might have to do with stewardship and the