Ministry has shifted dramatically in the past 40 years, especially with the widespread use of technology for communication and for church meetings. From pastors inundated with emails to multisite churches, technology has made it harder to be more personal in ministry. In addition, families are more likely to be blended or divorced, the culture has embraced LGBT issues, and the church is more aware of global churches.
Source: Ministry Today
A number of changes are coming in the next 10-20 years for the church, including a need for more churches to rely on bi-vocational pastors and minimizing the role of seminary. Some churches will rely on seminary students with online degrees. Home churches and creative fundraising will also become important as more churches struggle to survive financially.
Source: Ethics Daily
This week we talk about 5 shifts in church planting in the last ten years... 5 reasons pastors avoid politics... and an update about our friend, Ed Stetzer!
As mainline seminaries close down, consolidate, or sell off property and evangelical schools struggle to remain sustainable, theological schools serving immigrants are seeing renewed vitality. Both Pentecostal and Asia-based schools are seeing increases in enrollment as their American counterparts continue to experience cuts.
Source: Inside Higher Education
Thom Rainer writes that many churches will seek to hire a pastor of community evangelism in the future. Rainer writes that evangelism continues to be a struggle for many churches, and one person to lead local evangelism efforts will be key. Most churches are not evangelistic and they struggle to coordinate events, ministries, and social media connections, leading to a need for a new position.
Source: Church Central
Thomas S. Kidd and Barry Hankins, professors of history at Baylor University, write that the SBC is in decline because its members have, for the most part, lost their commitment to evangelism. SBC parents have also struggled to retain their children, while allowing their doctrine to become diluted by a kind of American deism and political involvement in the Republican party.
Source: Washington Post
When pastors are exhausted, they are in danger of making bad decisions, eating bad meals, acting impulsively or negatively, and responding with anger to others. Rest is essential for ministering effectively, let alone for being present with family and friends. Pastors may need accountability from colleagues, church members, or family to ensure that they take time to rest.
While the Twible by Jana Reiss converted the Bible into a series of tweets, the new Emoji Bible adds a Millennial spin to tweeting the Bible by inserting emojis into the text, using over 200 symbols that are typically used for text messages and on social media. The book is 3,300 pages and is subtitled: Scripture 4 Millennials, selling for $2.99.
Source: The Guardian
From work emails to phone calls and social media, more employees are struggling to divide their personal and work lives, especially executives. One third of Americans never even turn off their cell phones, and the constant access to work communication can prove stressful, especially for the extroverts who fear missing out. More introverted employees can sometimes disconnect better from work communication while at home, but the most important factor of all was having a clear, intentional plan for using social media and communicating with work while at home.