Why Membership Matters More Than Ever

W. Jackson Watts I’m often reluctant to speak of things “mattering more than ever.” These kinds of statements tend to ignore historical precedents and other factors that make our own times less unique than we imagine. Take pandemics as an example. Plague and pestilence were present in many…

15 Factors Contributing to the Pastoral Shortage Problem

by W. Jackson Watts This past March I published an article entitled “Reexamining the Pastoral Shortage Problem.” If social media and WordPress metrics are any indication, it struck a nerve. I view this as an affirmation that most readers agree that there is a shortage in available pastors,…

On C.S. Lewis and Denominational Survival

Matthew Pinson (This post originally appeared at matthewpinson.com) I recently read an address C. S. Lewis gave to a group of Anglican priests and youth leaders in 1945. It reminded me of what many of us in the Free Will Baptist Church have been thinking lately: Falling all…

Theology in a Time of Pandemic

W. Jackson Watts Theology never arises in a vacuum. It always has a context, a set of circumstances shaping its development and reception. Augustine’s City of God was a response to pagan claims that the barbarian incursions into Rome were a consequence of Christian emperors abolishing pagan worship.…

Multi-Site Church Polity: Congregational or Episcopal?

Matthew Pinson Recently my pastor and colleague at Welch College, Jesse Owens, texted me a tweet by the eminent Australian evangelical scholar Michael Bird, who tweeted the following about multi-site churches: “Thesis: Multi-site churches are not congregational, they are episcopally governed, the senior minister is a de facto…