Disclaimer:  The following is just one pastor’s suggestion for how church leaders can use Facebook.  I’m just one pastor with more than 30 years of experience in public ministry and nearly 10 years’ experience on Facebook.  I’m one pastor who has used Facebook in many different ways, made some mistakes and seen a lot of […]

women & Justice

It seems the flood gates have opened wide the past weeks to expose the issue of sexual harassment and assault.  There is nothing new about the problem, but there seems to be something new about the discussion.  Women are becoming more open about speaking out and people are taking the issue more seriously than in […]

Congregation Vitality

Congregations who are looking to evaluate and renew their mission may find the ELCA Congregational Vitality Project to be a helpful tool. The Congregational Vitality Project started as a way to better understand how congregations are living out God’s mission in their context. Frustrated by traditional measures of “butts and bucks,” researchers with the ELCA’s […]


What would your congregation do if you unexpectedly received a large bequest?  While your first thought might be that this would the best thing that could happen to a congregation, experience has shown that without a plan, gifts like this can derail a congregation’s mission faster than the problem of lack of funds can. Or […]


Rostered Ministers of the Northeastern Iowa, Southeastern Iowa and Western Iowa Synods gathered in Des Moines to reflect upon the theme “The Reformation: What’s at Stake.” The speakers were Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton, Bishop Guy Erwin, Bishop of the Southwest California Synod, and the Rev. Dr. Anna Madsen, director of OMG: Center for Theological Conversation. […]


You wouldn’t think of Elkader, Iowa as a center for fostering interfaith dialogue and a better understanding of Islam. And yet, in 1845 its founder, land developer Timothy Davis decided to name the town after Abd el-Kader, a religious and military leader who led the fight for Algerian independence. Although his story is not well […]


The earth and her creatures are besieged by storms and fire in our own country and around the world.  Those who are dealing with disasters directly are overwhelmed either with preparing for coming storms or fires, or cleaning up and recovering from storms and fires.  Those safe from disasters are also overwhelmed by images of […]