The Homiletics Online Blog

10 Reasons Why Churches Should Celebrate Christmas All Year

By December 1, you’ve probably been hearing Christmas music and seeing Christmas decorations, lights and ads for weeks. And as a church leader, you’ve probably been planning Advent and Christmas worship services since late summer or early fall. But really, can people ever get enough of Christmas? Should the season and what it represents be…

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Online Worship Post-Covid: Where Does Livestreaming Fit Now?

When the pandemic temporarily halted in-person worship services, churches turned to the internet for a handy substitute. Virtual gatherings were a blessing for congregations that already had livestreaming in place or could quickly access and master the technology. Worshiping together online provided comfort and unity during a challenging time for church members and leaders. But…

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Supporting the Pastor: How Churches Can Truly Appreciate Clergy

Ironically, not all pastors are fans of Pastor Appreciation Month, Clergy Appreciation Sunday or whatever title their churches use each October. They’d prefer that the effort to support pastors be ongoing, even automatic. That’s because clergy appreciation goes beyond the occasional “thank you.” It involves making tangible efforts to meet a range of needs for…

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Church Security in a Dangerous World: How Will You Protect Parishioners?

Having a church security and safety plan is no longer optional. Whether you lead a megachurch in the city or a small congregation in a rural area, you must be prepared for a wide range of emergency situations. The scourge of mass shootings in the United States is certainly a key reason to bulk up…

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Preaching Politics Pastor Election Republican Democrat Red Blue

Politics and preaching don’t mix, most people assume. But do pastors really need to steer clear of political topics and cultural debates? Should ministers and teachers reveal their political leanings during sermons and Bible classes? Is it okay to address tough issues that divide modern-day congregants? These questions often arise in America’s churches, especially as…

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AI Sermon ChatGPT Pastors Christian sermon prep preaching sermon writing

Recent headlines about ChatGPT may have you wondering about using artificial intelligence (AI) to write sermons — or at least to conduct sermon research. In fact, some people are promoting AI as a time-saving tool for overworked church leaders. Most pastors can relate to being short on sermon-prep time, or lacking ideas for yet another…

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pastor moving new congregation community transition future

Summertime in ministry often means moving time, particularly for pastors in the Methodist tribe who criss-cross the country just before July 1. If you’re passing a moving van on the highway any time between June 15 and the Fourth of July, there’s a pretty good chance a set of John Wesley’s journals is somewhere inside. But it…

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Homiletics - Interfacing With God - 5-12-2023

The original telephone was a large wooden box, often in a walnut finish, that hung on the wall. When it rang, you had to get up, go to it, and speak into a microphone mounted on the box. In 1919, the “candlestick” tabletop model was introduced. In the 1920s, the black desktop device with a…

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Homiletics Blog - Moving Van

The season for pastoral moves in some denominations is right around the corner. While you’re packing boxes, painting walls, grousing about mortgage rates, and threatening to fire your realtor, you’re also looking forward to a new church where the people will certainly be nicer, the building is new and problem-free, and the worship is more…

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Lusty Singing Featured Image

The belief that a congregation might sing in a courageous manner was suggested first, as far as I know, by one of the world’s great preachers, John Wesley (thus the interest for pastors). In his “Directions for Singing” in Select Hymns (1761), he advises congregations to “sing lustily and with a good courage.” In point…

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