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Archive of posts tagged oversight

The Value and Importance of Pastoral Visitation, Responses to Thom Rainer

Recently Thom Rainer posted a column titled, “FIFTEEN REASONS WHY YOUR PASTOR SHOULD NOT VISIT MUCH.” I first heard about it from a former student who recognized that this column argued the direct antithesis of what I teach in my pastoral ministry class and what I advocate for at this site. Thom has been helpful […]

Pastoral Care at the Hospital and in Times of Loss

Recently I was asked to speak to a class in our Worship Leadership program on pastoral care issues, specifically hospital visitation and bereavement.  The professor rightly wanted these students to be prepared to participate in this work of pastoral care. Below are my notes in bullet form for some key, basic thoughts on this realm […]

“Shepherds in a Ranching Culture”

Hal Poe wrote a column with this title recently for our local paper, The Jackson Sun. It is well worth reading. Hal underscores the importance of pastoral oversight and care and the value of smaller congregations. Here is a piece of his warning about inherent issues of large, mass meetings: The mass meeting has always […]

Paul, the Pastor of Particular People

One key point I have sought to make here and elsewhere is that Paul models a pattern of ministry which is attuned to each individual in the church and not just to a corporate mass. He conceives of ministry as serving particular people not simply people in the abstract. I think his language bears this […]

Luther and the Care of Souls

I have previously written on the pastoral impulse of the Reformation, the fact that this renewal of the church arose primarily from the earnest desire to care for souls, to see that they be taught the gospel and shown the way to peace with God and eternal life. This is a crucial point. Just recently […]

“No Pastor can afford to major on preaching to the exclusion of all else”

Justin Wainscott passed along to me the great quote below from Murray Capill’s book, The Heart Is the Target: Preaching Practical Application from Every Text. Capill’s point has been a theme of this site.             Amen!

Conduct Gospel-Centered Funerals

Conduct Gospel-Centered Funerals: Applying the Gospel at the Unique Challenges of Death, by Brian Croft & Phil Newton is a very helpful, practical little book on ministering well in the significant setting of a funeral. It would be hard to overestimate the importance of such a time in the life of anyone and the significance […]

“Your souls, more precious than thousands of worlds”

How should a pastor think of the members of the church he serves? Too often today church members are thought of as customers or potential workers. This is not the scriptural pattern; nor is it the practice of our forebears. Just today I came back to “The Glory and Ornament of a True Gospel‐constituted Church” […]

No “Safe Distance” Ministry

A main theme of this blog is the necessity of pastors knowing their people in order to be able really to pastor them. A colleague of mine, Justin Barnard, recently pointed me to Henri Nouwen’s In the Name of Jesus as a source making a similar point. The following excerpt is a powerful summary of ministry […]

Pastor of a Church vs. Just a Preacher

“He who can only generalize in the pulpit, but has not ability to individualize out of it; who cannot in some measure meet the varieties of religious perplexity, and deal with the various modifications of awakened solicitude; who finds himself disinclined or disabled to guide the troubled conscience through the labyrinths which sometimes meet the […]