Network Blog

  • The compass guiding our work

    Aug 22, 2013 | Pastoral Excellence Network

    By Christina Braudaway-Bauman | Just over a decade ago, a variety of Transition into Ministry (TiM) and Sustaining Pastoral Excellence (SPE) initiatives were launched across the country aimed at helping new pastors get a good start in ministry and sustaining and strengthening all pastors over the long haul.

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  • Clergy groups on the edge of the unknown

    Aug 08, 2013 | Pastoral Excellence Network

    By Lawrence Peers | Anyone who has practiced yoga has been introduced to the idea of being aware of your “edge” in any particular posture. Some of us have a tendency to push ourselves beyond our edge and can potentially injure ourselves. Others of us tend to retreat when we get to our edge and therefore never discover what else is possible.

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  • A God’s eye view from the balcony

    Jul 25, 2013 | Pastoral Excellence Network

    By Chris Braudaway-Bauman | Looking at the church and the world, at one another, and at ourselves with a God’s eye view is a primary purpose of clergy peer learning and support groups. I was reminded of this commitment when Rita Brock and Quinn Caldwell invited delegates at the General Synod of the United Church of Christ to reflect theologically on the familiar Gospel story of Jesus’ transfiguration—the time when Jesus climbed a mountain with his disciples and changed before their eyes.

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  • Why excellence?

    Jul 11, 2013 | Pastoral Excellence Network

    By Willie Sordillo | At a recent denominational gathering we asked the question, “What does pastoral excellence look like?” People were invited to respond in a few words on a Post-It note, which they attached to a cardboard human silhouette. Answers ranged from “good listener” to “calm in the midst of conflict.” But how comfortable are you, as a pastor, in thinking of yourself as “excellent,” and what do we mean by excellent anyway?

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  • Taking charge of your own learning

    Jun 27, 2013 | Pastoral Excellence Network

    by Larry Dill | In the raw aftermath of the tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut, this thank-you note came across my desk: I just wanted you to know that when the news of Newtown came on Friday, we were broken like everybody else. As we got our feet under us we realized preaching on Sunday would be a challenge. Our ICE group began to group text. As we shared ideas our sermons began to take shape.

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