The Church of Pope Francis: The Dialogue I’ve Being Waiting to See and Hear

With all the views of Pope Francis coming from right-left-and in-between I have wanted to see a god dialogue about the man, his view of important issues and his leadership style. Finally, the Jesuit magazine America has given me what I was searching for online. What is remarkable about this program is who is speaking here. The moderator is Nancy … Read More

Lessons from Pope Francis for All Christian Leaders (5)

Several years ago Pope Benedict XVI tasked three trusted cardinals to investigate as deeply as necessary the Vatican’s internal culture. He wanted to know what prompted a Vatican butler to steal incriminating documents and then leak them to a journalist. Only two men know what is in the final report that came from this investigation: Pope Benedict XVI and Pope … Read More

The Reformation of the Vatican – The Sad Case of Józef Wesołowski

Vatican watchers, especially non-Catholics who love the Roman Catholic Church as I do, watch and pray for further reforms that are needed inside the Church. I was pleased to read this week of the Vatican putting Józef Wesołowski, its former nuncio (ambassador) to the Dominican Republic under house arrest on Tuesday, September 23. Archbishop Józef Wesołowski was born in Nowy Targ, … Read More

Let’s Talk with Mark Elfstrand – August 15, 2014

I mentioned in my September 3 blog post that I would appear on Mark Elfstrand’s Chicago program (4:00 to 6:00 p.m.) on WYLL as a “Resident Theologian.” Here is a short appearance I made with Mark taken from a live broadcast on Friday, August 15. It includes my response to his question about the pastoral ministry of Mark Driscoll in … Read More

Let’s Talk with Mark Elfstrand – August 1, 2014

On Friday, August 1, Fr. George Koch (Resurrection Anglican Church, West Chicago), and Rev. Ian Simkins (Poplar Creek Church, Bartlett), both members of the ACT3 board, joined me for a lively in-studio “Pastors’ Roundtable” dialogue on WYLL in Chicago.  Mark Eflstrand, the show’s host, is a long time friend. I met Mark when he hosted a program on WORD in … Read More

How and Why ACT3 Began

The ministry of ACT3 Network was legally incorporated in 1991. Four men joined me in our home in Carol Stream for the purpose of founding a non-profit teaching mission that would seek the renewal of the church through impacting the lives of pastors and leaders. At the time this ministry was incorporated it was called Reformation & Revival. But the … Read More

The Missional Paradigm and Effective Seminary Education

Last week I wrote several blogs on the state of theological education in North America. I suggested that seminaries need to adjust their mission to the rapidly changing context of the church in twenty-first century America. I further suggested that we need to teach theology and mission as integrated topics, not as separate or unrelated academic disciplines. This story, told … Read More

A New Kind of Leader in the Irish Methodist Church

Dr. Heather Morris, the first female leader of a major church body in Ireland, was recently installed as the President of the Methodist Church, at a gathering at Carrickfergus, Co. Antrim. Martin O’Brien, editor of The Irish Catholic, writes that he first heard Dr Morris preach to a huge congregation at Clonard Novena where “she held in rapt attention” a … Read More

Why Theological Education Fails the Need of Our Times

My title is big and broad, I understand. I believe, simply put, that contemporary theological education is failing to produce true leaders. We teach to our level of competence and the competence of most of our best schools is to teach courses that are helpful but not necessarily centered on the missional reality of the church. Generally speaking our seminaries … Read More