COVID Lockdowns and Culture Shock

By: Jessica Wolst *This article was originally published at In the Netherlands, we are just starting to come out of an 8-week-long "intelligent lockdown." For us, this included the following: ~schools closed ~restaurants only open for carry-out ~a lot of businesses/stores closed ~no close-contact work (like massage, barber, nail salons, etc.) or museums/theaters ~working... Continue Reading →

A Community of Trust

By: Rev. Craig Shepperd In the 2000 comedy hit, Meet the Parents, Greg Focker (Ben Stiller’s character) meets his future in-laws for the first time. Jack Byrnes (Robert De Niro) wants to make sure Greg is worthy of his daughter. Jack lays out several tests for Greg to pass to insure he is capable of... Continue Reading →

Road to Reawakening

By: Rev. Craig Shepperd In my previous post I presented the church-going habits of multiple generations. I also proposed the possibility that, for some, perhaps their lack of attendance is less a statement of their faith, and more of a statement about an overall discontentment of “doing church.” As suggested before, these days of the... Continue Reading →

Non Present

By: Rev. Craig Shepperd The current younger generations take a lot of flack concerning their lack of church attendance. I would agree to some degree it is concerning, but I think it is also a bit unfair. Here are two reasons why: Church attendance or even a lack thereof, does not ensure spiritual health. Diana... Continue Reading →

The Believers’ Buffet

By: Rev. Craig Shepperd In my previous article, I reflected on the church being minimized to our own individualistic pursuits. This “Church of Claus” approach interferes with the hope that worship becomes an audience of one (God), thus ultimately stunting our spiritual growth. Today, I want to continue down this same path. There is quite... Continue Reading →

The Church of Claus

By: Rev. Craig Shepperd Often the Christian life is approached as if it is an individual pursuit. There is very little thought given as to how the body of believers might enhance one’s spiritual well-being. Furthermore, the Church (like God) has been demoted in the life of the Christian, functioning as some institutional Santa Claus.... Continue Reading →

Gathered to Scatter

By: Rev. Craig Shepperd Abstract: This essay looks at what is the purpose of our gathering. What might corporate worship be preparing us for? During these days of Pandemic, we miss being together for worship. The question remains, however, what about it are we missing? We may be missing social interaction. We may be missing... Continue Reading →

The Church in Chaos

Rev. Craig Shepperd Abstract: This essay looks at who the Church is to be in the midst of suffering, brokenness, and chaos. “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?” The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”... Continue Reading →

The Already, Not Yet Band

By: Rev. Craig Shepperd In my previous post I stated that the Church lives life in the middle of the “already but not yet.” Jesus’ ministry, death, resurrection and ascension has provoked the dawning of the coming of God’s Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. However, we are quite aware that we do... Continue Reading →

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