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How to Minister in the Present When Your Church Dwells on the Past

I was ready to move forward, but all my people could do was look back.
How to Minister in the Present When Your Church Dwells on the Past
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When I entered my first pastorate, within six months I noticed an exciting phenomenon. At least, it thrilled me. Every Sunday morning the first four pews on the left side of the sanctuary filled with teens. Thirty to forty eager listeners, Bibles in hand, sat ready to hear what God had to say.

I mentioned my excitement at a Christian education committee meeting.

"Well, that's nice," Harry Nickles smiled. Then his mind, and his heart, drifted back over the years. "But I remember when Dr. Anderson was here, right after the war. We packed in a hundred to a hundred fifty kids every week."

Since only eight hundred kids are in the high school district, I must have looked startled.

Then Harry added, "Oh, that was at the Sunday evening service. I suppose we had more in the morning."

It wasn't the first time I had heard about Dr. Anderson's tenure. Nor would it be the last. To the best of my ability, I've reconstructed the oral history of his ministry at ...

January/February
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