With all this grief, on a societal level perhaps not seen since 9/11 or the stock market crash of 1929, we pastors and other church staff sure could use more ministers. For Baptists, this shouldn’t be a novel idea.
Yes, these are hard times for theological education. But the closing of a second seminary founded by moderate Baptists feels like an abandonment of Baptists’ historic commitment to the effective preparation of ministers for congregational ministry.
At the beginning of a new decade, I mourn the state of the church in America. The church is largely guilty of pushing people away from the body of Christ and from the full witness of Scripture.
Our lack of concern for character in our leaders is impacting our ability to meet the great moral crises of our time.
As a healthy, 37-year-old pastor, I confess that sometimes I struggle to relate to congregants with chronic illness and pain. That has changed.
How do we assess claims of “I am not a racist” widely used by those who engage in racist comments and behavior or defend others who do so? Applying different forms of reasoning can help.
Our historic convictions as Baptists are not a liability in today’s environment. They are a deep well of wisdom and strength. When we lean into what makes us uniquely Baptist, we truly can make a difference in the world.
Some Baptists are ready to ditch “brand name” Christianity for Christian evangelical mono-culture, ready to run a congregation of called and baptized believer-priests as a corporation and ready to forget that we ever were these people called Baptists. I’m not there just yet.
Has the holy word of God been reduced to a prop to win points with a political base? Those who support so-called “Bible bills” claim to love the Scripture, but I believe tossing the Bible into a partisan wrestling match betrays that claim.