The Poet William Wordsworth on the Pastor-Theologian

I visited Rydal Mount a few weeks ago, the home of poet William Wordsworth.  My father-in-law was visiting us here in England, so we spent a couple of days in “the Lakes” (besides my father-in-law, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie were apparently also sighted in the Lake District that week). Rydal Mount sits just on…

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Interview with Jason Byassee (pt. 2): The Rift between Church and Academy

This is the 2nd part of our interview with Jason Byassee (for part 1, scroll down or click here).  We have written quite a bit on the idea of the pastor-scholar / pastor-theologian here at HR (see previous posts for some links).  Jason’s pastoral and writing ministry seems to hug the edges of the (sometimes…

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Checking back in with Jason Byassee (pt. 1): Theology, Writing, Social Media & the Local Church

For our series on “Loving the Church” in all its grit, grime and glory, we had some exchanges with Jason Byassee.  Before accepting an appointment as Senior Minister at Boone United Methodist Church (North Carolina), Jason worked at Duke Divinity School, heading up their Center for Theology, Writing and Media.  Since a lot of our…

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Responding to Gerald Heistand on the “Ecclesial Theologian”

I have been writing on the vocational idea of the “pastor-theologian.”  The recent series of posts was inspired by Doug Sweeney’s article at the Gospel Coalition, whose “call and agenda” should be received with both excitement and urgency. Related to these thoughts, I recommend this post by Mark Stevens who is studying Eugene Peterson’s model…

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The Vocational Identity of the Pastor-Theologian (part 2): Peterson’s “Contemplative Pastor”

[This post follows another inspired by an article at Gospel Coalition by Douglas Sweeney.] Pastor, or Pastor-Theologian?  A number of the most helpful books on the pastor’s life and work that have weighed in my hands have been written by Eugene Peterson.  I recently finished his memoir which recast the wisdom and insight I have…

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(Re-) Forging a New Vocational Identity: the “Pastor-Theologian” (Part 1)

As soon as I read Douglas Sweeney’s article, “A Call and Agenda for Pastor-Theologians,” I shared it on Facebook wall with the comment: “Why I am doing a PhD.” What I meant is that the vocational vision of the “pastor-theologian” is one of the most compelling motivations for my current endeavors as a doctoral student…

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An Encounter that Redefined my Concept of “Pastor”

I had just moved to Birmingham, Alabama to serve as a college pastor.  Suburbia tends to insulate us from the deep, historical pains of a city, so I asked Tracy Hipps to give me on orientation.  The social terrain between Birmingham’s white and black and rich and poor is more vast than in any city…

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Seasoned in Ministry… or Rotten? Maturing vs. Decaying

I used to cut firewood every Autumn with my Dad.  We would drive the tractor into the woods bordering the fields of my grandparents’ farm.  He would cut the trees and I would split them and load them onto the old makeshift wagon my grandfather had built from plywood and an old axle.  Once we…

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