This Week’s Links

It is Tuesday, so by now you know what that means.  It’s time for the weekly offering of links to stories and things I found interesting this past week and think you might enjoy or find helpful too. So without further adieu, here are this week’s links. The categories are as follows in alphabetical order:  Church Stuff, Cross Sector Collaboration, Leadership, Neighbor Love, Social Media, Vocation, and Worship.

Church Leadership and Church Stuff

This past Saturday Rev. Elizabeth Eaton was officially installed as the Presiding Bishop of the ELCA.  For a chance to see her and hear a little about her, she was interviewed last week by Chicago’s ABC affiliate.  The interview can be watched here.  If you want to see pictures of the installation, here is a good sampling.

Rev. Dr. Robin Steinke wrote a blog back in July about re-imagining ways of preparing people for leadership in the church.  I came across it this past week and now entrust it to you. It’s a very good read.

A Methodist minister will face a trial at a Methodist panel for officiating his gay son’s wedding. I realize the Methodists hold different views on this than ELCA Lutherans, and this speaks to some of the challenges even among “mainline” Protestants on the difficulty of being welcoming while also holding particular beliefs and convictions.

Are you an active congregational member or leader? Have you been one but have become burned out?  Have you ever been so focused on church attendance and membership numbers that you lose sight of the church’s important work and mission?  Well, Carey Nieuwhof offers some reasons as to why congregations don’t pass the 200 person mark.

Apparently “baby boomers are flocking to church ministry.”  What do you think this might mean?

Cross Sector Collaboration

Do you enjoy thinking about innovative solutions to solve social problems?  Well, you know I do.  Here is a look at five innovative partnerships courtesy of William D Eggers and Paul Macmillan.


The Drucker Institute offers some ideas as to what Peter Drucker would be reading this week.

Karin Hurt reminds us that just as organizations and people need vision, so do teams of people and teams within larger organizations.

Rebel Brown offers 3 Simple Steps to lead successful change.  These steps according to her are:  1) “Make the status quo unsafe; 2) Focus on solutions; and 3) Ask questions and get people involved in their change.”

Chanelle Yarber offers 10 major causes of failure in leadership. What might you add to this list?

Balance is an important thing for leaders, and all people.  Here are John Bossong’s keys for leadership balance.

Bob Chapman offers some thoughts on the human side of leadership.

HBR provides a tip on how to encourage diversity by offering role models.

My favorite elementary school teacher drove home the point to “use my time wisely.” Such simple but profound advice would shape my schooling all the way through grad school.  She was a tough teacher, but I believe she got great results.  Being a tough teacher doesn’t mean that one doesn’t care.  Rather, perhaps they care so much they are willing to be tough to get the most out of their students and to push their students to grow to their greatest potential. What are the implications of these insights for leaders and mentors?

Kevin Daum offers leadership lessons from the arts which were published in Inc. These four lessons are:  lead a project from start to finish, manage dynamic people effectively, ensure total accountability, and implement big picture thinking.

Also published in Inc. was this look by Raman Chadha at emotional intelligence, and how it is imperative for leaders in order to be most effective and have a great impact.

Neighbor Love

Eric Barretto offers a fantastic reflection on what it might mean to be leading toward the unexpected.

Andrew Schwartz asks, “When Did Jesus Stop Caring about the Poor?”  Good question. It’s amazing to me how many people who call themselves “Christian” miss this central tenant of the gospel.

Some times the best wisdom about life comes from those who have really lived it.  Here is some wisdom about how to live from a grandmother shared by her grand daughter Dr. Carmen Harra.

In another example of the intersection of faith and public life, a number of faith leaders have challenged congress to end the shutdown because of the negative effects it is having on our country, but especially the poor and vulnerable.  As one example, consider this news where the poorest of the poor have lost their welfare checks. If you don’t feel convicted by this news perhaps you should go back and read the gospels cover to cover.  If you need a little humor, or more likely another reason to put your palm to your forehead see some of the quotes (as ridiculous as they are) from some people in light of the government shutdown.  I think these beg the question, do we really consider these people our leaders? Good grief.

In this week’s example of a local municipality struggling on how to feed the hungry, consider this struggle in Olympia, Washington.  What do you think?

Rev. Joanna Harader offers this powerful reflection, “On Holy Meals and Leftovers.” I consider this a must read from this past week.

Friend of this blogger Rev. Dan Poffenberger and my wife Allison Siburg teamed up to give a not so typical approach to a sermon this past Sunday.  It is quite the powerful look and reflection on the conversion story of Saul to Paul.  What do you think?  What do you hear out of this?

Social Media

If you need some help promoting your blog, consider these tips and ideas from Lisa Tilt.


Friend of this blogger Brigitte offers this great look and introspection on feeling ready for a change, but feeling a mix of “move on” or “press on.” If you are like me, you have probably felt these same things now or at least, at some point in your life.


Have you ever struggled with introducing children into worship?  If so, here are ten tips that might be helpful.

A.J. Swoboda offers a reflection on “Holy Uncertainty” and looks at the connection of worship, fear, and leadership.

Perhaps you have heard, or even believed yourselves that worship and church feels like a family.  Have you ever stopped to think about why perhaps it shouldn’t?  Is there another image for church that might be better than family? Perhaps community? Or, do you take issue with this pondering? If so, what causes you pause or anger?  Why?

Here are some things to file away for worship when themes and topics of food and hunger might come up as topics in the scriptures (perhaps as part of a stewardship series or in the lead up to Thanksgiving).

Well that about wraps it up for this week’s links. As always, please let me know what you think and if there are particular topics or questions you would like me to consider or explore. Blessings on your week!

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