I remember it well. One day in late February or early March, classmates showed up at Fairview Elementary School with what looked for all the world like a smudge of dirt on their foreheads. I was mystified – and fascinated. There was a large Roman Catholic population in our industrial, railroad town. I didn’t put […]

Easter is Coming

Early in my ministry I heard Bill Laws, an experienced pastor, denominational leader and trusted mentor to many of us, say that it takes a full five years to learn enough about a congregation to be an effective pastor. After five years, Bill said, your ministry begins and you will be trusted enough to do […]

Lent and Protestants

In the church of my childhood no attention was paid to either Advent or Lent. The words themselves sounded slightly mystical, indicative of strange beliefs and practices of Roman Catholic Friends who didn’t eat meat on Friday, went to confession, crossed themselves at the free throw line and, of all things, showed up at school […]