Archives For Leadership

bryanMT PLEASANT, SC – Monday May 23, 2016, clergy and lay delegates from the Diocese of the Carolinas voted unanimously to elect Bishop David C. Bryan as the first Suffragan Bishop of the Diocese of the Carolinas.

Bryan has served as Bishop of the Southeast (PEARUSA) Network since September 2013.This Network, one of three in PEARUSA, is part of a missionary district established by the Anglican Province of Rwanda in the United States.

This June, Archbishop Rwaje of Rwanda will formally hand over all three networks to Archbishop Foley Beach and the Anglican Church in North America. Two of the networks will become dioceses. The clergy and churches in Bishop Bryan’s network will have the opportunity to become part of an already existing Diocese of the Carolinas under Bishop Steve Wood.

“It’s the right thing for us to do here in the Carolinas,” Bryan said. “The clergy who elected me as their bishop agreed with me that we didn’t need another diocese. I am personally looking forward to working with Bishop Steve Wood and sharing episcopal ministry with him.”

The clergy and parishes in Bishop Bryan’s PEARUSA network will have until July 1 to apply for admittance into the Diocese of the Carolinas.

“I’m excited about the possibilities ahead,” Wood responded. “Bishop David and the clergy of his network are teaching all of us about humility and passion for gospel unity. The vote last night, I think, tells it all. Our clergy and lay delegates are excited about coming together.”

Archbishop Beach added, “Archbishop Rwaje and the House of Bishops of Rwanda want our Anglican witness of Jesus Christ in North America to be strong. I believe what Bishop David and the Southeast (PEARUSA) Network is doing demonstrates that witness boldly and courageously in the Carolinas.”

Related to the actions of the Southeast (PEARUSA) Network, Bishop Thad Barnum has accepted the position of Assisting Bishop in the Diocese of the Carolinas where Bishop Barnum has established an Office of Clergy Care attending to the personal and spiritual well-being of the clergy.

+Thad and his wife Erilynne have four grown children and eleven grandchildren. They reside in Pawleys Island, SC

+David and his wife Nancy have three grown children, with two married and one engaged. They reside in Columbia, SC.

+Steve and his wife Jacqui have four grown children and two grandchildren. They reside in Mt. Pleasant, SC.

If you have something to do with communications in your church, this might be for you. The workshop is for church staffs, pastors, church planters, and volunteers. The guest speaker is St. Andrew’s Communications Director, Greg Shore.

Zero Budget/Zero Time Church Communications

HOW TO ESTABLISH AND MAINTAIN A WEB PRESENCE WHEN RESOURCES ARE LOW

During the morning session Greg Shore, Director of Communications for ACNA parish, St. Andrew’s ~ Mt. Pleasant, will look at social media – Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – and hear not only why we should be using it, but when and how.

We’ll reconvene after lunch to have David Childs, Director of Communications for Church of our Saviour, John Island, show us how to create a low-cost website using Wix as well as a brief foray into other current programming options.

There will be plenty of time for conversations, questions, and answers.

To register visit the Diocese of South Carolina’s website.

About Greg Shore

Greg-Shore_200-pxGreg’s job responsibilities started 18 years ago at St. Andrew’s ~ Mt. Pleasant with producing two service bulletins for three services and a weekly newsletter along with producing occasional advertising and collateral pieces. The job has grown and he now produces or oversees the production of all visual communications at St. Andrew’s and the Diocese of the Carolinas which includes weekly materials for 11 services in four locations, six websites, multiple social media outlets, video production, printed and online advertising, press relations, and live streaming operations for a weekly theology class and occasional worship service. He attends St. Andrew’s church plant in North Charleston where he serves as a LifeGroup Leader. In his spare time he bikes, runs, and coaches other runners. Greg lives in North Charleston with his three cats: Burley, Kowbeidu, and Woody.

Logic On Fire

April 28, 2015

This looks interesting:

Logic on Fire consists of three DVDs dealing with the life and ministry of Dr. Lloyd-Jones.  The centerpiece is a documentary of ca. 100 minutes of the same title . . . . 

The documentary is reminiscent in style of the work of Ken Burns.  Photographs and video footage are accompanied by thoughtful commentary from family members, colleagues and others influenced by the Doctor’s ministry.  Iain Murray is predictably the most insightful into the history of his public ministry . . . .

Three things struck me as important for Christians, especially pastors, to reflect upon.

First, Lloyd-Jones’ seriousness with regard to preaching was deeply rooted in the fact that God had dealt seriously with him.  The Doctor knew the glory of salvation in Christ because he knew the depth of his own depravity.  I was convicted by this.  Too often I think I approach preaching as a technical exercise.  While I do not find the Doctor’s theology of unction and revival compelling, there is a personal component to preaching which is important.  Knowledge of one’s own sin is what helps to magnify Christ in the heart and this has to shape how one preaches.  You cannot learn that from a textbook or a class.  You learn that from sitting under the Word and being convicted yourself.

Second, upon retirement, Lloyd-Jones spent a lot of time traveling to small churches to preach and encourage the brethren.  I know too many Toppers in the US who will only speak to crowds of a certain number, lest their gifts be wasted.  One friend was told by one such that ‘Last time I spoke at your church, you only got me 800 people.  I don’t speak for that small a crowd.’  The Doctor was a delightful contrast.  But then his ministry was not about the Doctor or about the paycheque.  It was about the gospel (see the first point above) and its impact upon the saints.

Third, the most moving part of the documentary deals with the period leading up to the Doctor’s death.  At some point, he is asked whether he is upset that he will never preach again.  His response is that it was never about his preaching in the first place, it was about Christ.  He rejoiced not in the influence of his ministry but in the fact that his name was written in heaven.   There is a lesson for every single one of us there.

Read the rest.

A must read for seminarians, clergy and local church leadership teams, from Matthias Media.

A deep and abiding passion to see our churches grow is a very dangerous thing.

That may seem an odd observation to make, but it is a critical one. If we run with a passion to grow things without at the same time being aware that it is one of the most dangerous passions you can have, then the passion will destroy us and our work.

The most dangerous people in our Christian community are the leaders and evangelists who not only long to see growth but who also have the closest sympathy with the needs and concerns of the sinners we are seeking to reach. That is, the people who feel most keenly the needs of the unconverted sinner, who feel most keenly their pain and the difficulties caused by the churches that are meant to be attracting them: these are our most dangerous church members. Why? Because that sympathy for the sinner can very easily overpower any other concerns, such that they see almost every issue through the lens of what will make it easy or hard for the sinner to connect in to church life. And because they long to see these people won to Christ and part of his people, they will feel most keenly anything that might potentially make it hard for them—things like what we say, what we do. They will even see some biblical ideas and practices as concerning when it comes to reaching unbelievers.

The more passionate a person is to see the church grow and the more their sympathies rest with the sinners we are trying to reach, the more open they become to the danger of compromise. Leaders and churches can become ‘sinner driven’.

We are very aware of how secular businesses can become consumer driven—they exist to get people to buy their product and will bend and shift almost anything to increase sales. But a church that is sinner driven can adopt an almost identical set of values—we will shift and change whatever we need to make church more attractive to the community of people we are trying to draw in. Barriers to acceptance of church life are identified and removed, driven very largely by the principle that if people find them difficult then we must have done something wrong. Very soon, the barriers being removed are core gospel thoughts, ideas and practices. Talk of hell is very off-putting. People don’t like to hear about it. Cut back mentioning it, lest we turn someone off. Sin is very negative. Make church more celebratory. Pursue inspiration instead of education. Public Bible reading is often clunky and hard to follow. Drop it in favour of something that will engage. And so on.

Further to this is the subtle but dangerous pattern of passionate mission-minded leaders and churches seeing the power of respect in gaining a hearing for the gospel. People will listen if we gain their respect. We shift our focus, embrace practices, all designed to establish our credibility in the eyes of the world. We want so much for church and its leadership to be regarded respectfully by the community around us so that they might listen to the life-saving message. But a church, a leader, is then only a short step away from losing that which makes us the church: the truth of the gospel, and the distinctives of gospel priorities.

It ought to be obvious but it constantly needs to be said: it isn’t our ministry practices and the message we preach that is to win the respect of outsiders. It is our daily lives. The message we preach? It always was and always will be the stench of death to those that are perishing.

It will be this because the gospel, viewed from one perspective, is a prophetic call to the world to lay down its arms, to stop rebelling. Perhaps the shortest description of the gospel in the New Testament is that Jesus Christ is Lord (2 Cor 4:5). What are those words if they’re not fighting words? To the sinner it says: “Jesus Christ is Lord. You aren’t. So turn back, repent. Bow the knee. Find forgiveness by the only means possible: the gift of grace found in the Lord himself.”

Read the rest.

Leadership: American Style

November 3, 2014

From The Anxious Bench:

Two men, born twenty-six years apart and moving within different circles, followed remarkably similar and typically American paths to the pinnacle of fame and leadership.

The first came from humble origins and endured a challenging childhood.  His father died in an car wreck while his mother was pregnant, leaving her as a single mom.  At the time of his birth, that situation meant social stigma and the stresses of providing for a family as a single parent.  In order to do so, she left him with her parents–with whom she did now always see eye-to-eye–in order to obtain vocational training in a city over a day’s travel away.  Soon, his mother remarried, but rather than bringing increased stability to the family, his stepfather brought further chaos as alcohol-fueled arguments and domestic abuse often defined his home life.  Turmoil characterized his formative years.

In spite of these challenges, during his high school years the young man excelled academically, served in student government, and became an accomplished musician.  In college, he earned a prestigious Rhodes scholarship before returning to the United States to earn a law degree from an Ivy League school.  Along the way, he emerged as a gifted communicator and a charismatic young star in a political party populated with older men.

Decades later, the second young man followed a similar path.  Born into a family where the men were alcoholics and wife-beaters, he grew up in a tough neighborhood full of all sorts of illicit activity.  In high school, he excelled academically, served in student government, and became an accomplished athlete.  His senior year, he was student body president and was voted “most likely to succeed.”  He also worked in politics.  In college, he underwent an evangelical conversion experience, going on to complete several degrees.  Along the way, he emerged as a gifted communicator and a charismatic young star in an religious tradition populated with older men.

Both men excelled due to their charisma and ability to connect with “the people.”

Read the rest.

A very good read.

One of the books I read over the summer was Andrew Atherstone’s fascinating biography of Justin Welby. It is a considerably expanded version of  the short book which Atherstone wrote immediately after it was announced that Welby would be Archbishop.

The first thing which strikes you in opening the book is the thoroughness of the research. Atherstone has clearly done his homework on Welby’s earlier life, citing letters and other correspondence, and interviews with people who knew the family. (This is not an authorised biography, so there is no material from Welby himself.) But the recent additions to the book are based on talks that Welby has done at a number of conferences, and Atherstone has clearly listened to them all carefully. Overall it is most impressive.

As a biography, the book tends to focus on factual material rather than giving either personal evaluation, or offering much reflection on the interconnection between different aspects of Welby’s ministry. But I was left with a number of strong impressions.

Read it all.

 

As you probably know, an Islamist terror group that goes by the acronym ISIS has been gobbling up huge swathes of territory, executing Christians and other religious minorities, and even destroying priceless artifacts. Tens of thousands have been forced to flee with little more than the shirts on their backs. My friend, Canon Andrew White, vicar of the only Anglican church in Iraq, says, “The Islamic State simply said [‘]we can do anything now that the world is just looking at Gaza[‘] . . . in reality that is true. Iraq seems like old news, yet things just get worse and worse here.”

In a recent letter to President Obama, Rep. Wolf wrote, “Mr. President . . . You, Secretary of State Kerry and Ambassador Power all need to speak out.”

“Time is running out,” Wolf continues. “How many more people must be killed for you to acknowledge this situation?”

President Obama has said there’s no military solution to this crisis. But there are other measures to take, and Wolf is calling for the president to take a number of them immediately, including:

  • Sign the bipartisan legislation approved by the House and Senate to create a special envoy to promote religious freedom in the Middle East, legislation that has been sitting on Mr. Obama’s desk. The envoy would work with the Kurdish and Iraqi governments to address this humanitarian crisis;
  • Appoint a senior official to coordinate all U.S. government resources necessary to stop the genocide;
  • Publicly thank the Kurdish authorities for protecting the Christians and other religious minorities who have fled ISIS; and finally
  • Work with trusted NGOs—such as Catholic Relief Services and UNICEF—who are already on the ground.

Friends, this is not a partisan issue; it’s a biblical issue…to rescue the perishing. Let’s stand with Frank Wolf and with others of good will, ofallparties, to respond to this disaster. As Wolf said in closing his letter to the President, “You and your administration must take action now, before the damage is irreversible. Please speak out for the voiceless.”

Folks, I’m asking you to call or write the White House. Applaud the President’s use of air drops and air strikes, but urge him please to take the steps recommended by Rep. Wolf.

Read it all.

 

Holiness by J C Ryle 2For the past few years the SAMP staff has been reading and discussing primary source theology during our summers.  My reasons are manifold: There is the simple an practical matter of equipping and encouraging.  While I am the bishop of a diocese and the rector of a parish, I am still the pastor to my staff.  Secondly, I find that the languid days of summer parish life allow for a more considered and reflective pace of reading, thought and discussion – things which the pressing needs of parish life and ministry are too easily eclipsed during the ministry year. And thirdly, I want to expose our staff to the richness of the Christian faith.  So, we tend to read “old dead guys” – often because they are unknown and neglected.  I especially prefer to read old books of theology. I find in these books a fresh perspective as the writers are both free from the spirit of the age in which we live and the errors of their age are now plain to us.

Two summers ago we read The Bruised Reed by Richard Sibbes.  We created a .pdf of the original document and broke it down by weekly readings, including discussion questions.  This resource is still housed on the SAMP site and may be accessed here.

Last summer we read A Treatise on Grace and Free Will by Augustine.

This summer we will be reading Holiness by J.C. Ryle.  As I told the staff, Ryle has much to say of perennial importance regarding Christian living here and now.  Holiness speaks strongly to our contemporary shallowness and superficialities; laying out afresh, biblically, systematically, and in practical terms the true fundamentals of Christian sanctity.

I’d love to have you read along with us.  You can click the link above to read the book online.  Alternatively, I’ve had Catherine Guerry, the Manager of our bookstore, Common Grounds, stock a few books.

 

 

Yep.

dilbert

Download it here.