The Relationship Between Corporate Worship and Pastoral Care

My colleague at the church I serve has always described pastoral counseling as an extension of pulpit ministry. I think that is a very helpful and important description. But in reading through William H. Willimon's Worship as Pastoral Care (Abingdon Press, 1979), I've seen that the language can be broadened further. While taking care to not lose… Continue reading The Relationship Between Corporate Worship and Pastoral Care

Sinning Like a Christian

As in other areas, Willimon is quite helpful when it comes to thinking about the modern three-letter curse word: sin. "Sin is more than a taboo, dread, or shame.... When Christians say 'sin,' they are saying more than the universal cultural phenomenon of human beings living as they ought not. Christian sin results not from… Continue reading Sinning Like a Christian

Willimon: Calvary, Death, Cross, and the Holy Supper

"We...seek to fill ourselves, cure our aches and pains, live forever. Too often, American Christianity presents the good news of Christ as the solution to all human problems, the fulfillment of all wants, and a good way to make basically good people even better. " "The cross suggests that this good news is the beginning… Continue reading Willimon: Calvary, Death, Cross, and the Holy Supper

Seminary too Hard?

  "Sometimes seminarians complain that the seminary's expectations of them are too demanding, that the course is too difficult, or that it is placing academic burdens upon them that they cannot bear.  Perhaps they feel that their sincerity and their sense of vocation are enough to sustain them in their ministry.  They are wrong." William… Continue reading Seminary too Hard?

Willimon on Homiletical Communication

In The Intrusive Word (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1994), Willimon exhorts preachers to be careful not to go too far in making the gospel understandable.  In his words, this is "reducing the gospel to a slogan for a bumper sticker" or mixing the gospel with some "common human experience" (24). "We must learn to preach again… Continue reading Willimon on Homiletical Communication