February 2012


ImagePatrick Clayborn has been a professor at Drew Theological School in 2011. He is ordained as an Itinerant Elder in the Ohio Annual Conference of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. Patrick previously served as Assistant Professor of Homiletics at Methodist Theological School in Ohio, and as a pulpit associate at St. James AME Church in Newark, NJ. Dr. Clayborn is a member of the American Academy of Religion and the Academy of Homiletics.

Designing Worship that Connects with the Unchurched: 

How can we make our worship services say “whosoever will let them come”? How do we create an environment that is inviting to those who have little or no connection to church? How do we take our worship to those who have no desire to come to our churches? How can such liturgies be sustained, particularly by churches with few resources? These are the questions that this workshop seeks to address. The aim will be to explore methods for planning, enriching, and maintaining worship services so that seekers find them welcoming.

Preaching and Spirituality: 

This workshop focuses on the essentials of Christian spirituality within the preaching vocation. The history and theology of the connection between spirituality and preaching; how biblical exegesis for preaching impacts and is impacted by spirituality; and ways in which spirituality shapes and is shaped by homiletical style, design, form and diversity are components that will be introduced. These concepts will be explored through various interactive activities.

Bishop Linda Lee sets aside one day a week as Sabbath, devoting that time to prayer, reading, writing and reflection. She does the same each morning, cherishing silence and solitude with God.

“I believe the Sabbath is so important because of the depth of relationship,” says Lee, who leads the Wisconsin Area. “I believe it allows anyone who practices on a regular basis a way of having an ongoing and ever deepening and widening and magnificent relationship with God.”

Setting aside Sabbath time, she says, empowers the practitioner to be in the world for God with disenfranchised people who need to know God is with them.

This Saturday we lost one of the most talented singers of

our time.  Whitney Houston, whose soaring voice and enormous talent were overshadowed in recent years by her battles with drug addiction, was found dead Saturday in a Beverly Hills, California, hotel, hours before she was to attend a pre-Grammy party hosted by the songstress’ longtime mentor, Clive Davis. She was 48.

I grieve for her family and friends along with the rest of her fans.  The tragedy of her life inspires me to speak out against drugs.  Whitney said in an interview with ABC’ News anchor Diane Sawyer,”Nobody makes me doing anything that I do not want to do.”  She chose to do drugs and it destroyed her voice, career and impacted her quality of life.

Many families face family members who are involved with drugs and I am frustrated by the mothers who complain about their drug influenced child stealing from them and not kicking them out.  For the fathers who keep making excuses for their daughters who enter rehab program after program and never finishing.  For the extended family members who say “that is just the way cousin Sammie is and he will never change” when they show up high at a family gathering and then disrupts everything.

As a pastor  understand never wanting to give up on a family member but my experience with Project Impact as a ReEntry Specialist I understand that addicts must hit rock bottom to make a decision to change.  Saying no to drugs also means drawing the line with family members and friends.

I dare not be insensitive to the pain the Houston family is experiencing but this is a teaching moment about how drugs can negatively impact a persons life.  Whitney was raised in the church, developed her skills in church choirs and dazzled the world with her voice since she was 19 years old. Our choices matter and we all have a responsibility to make choices for our lives.  My prayer is that we remember the unbelievable gift and talent of Whitney Houston but we do not ignore the impact of her choice to engage in drugs.

Choices do Matter

Dr. John R Compton was my first pastor and role model as a spiritual leader.  I wanted to acknowledge him during Black History month yet his legacy as a pastor and community leader extends beyond the confines of a one month celebration.

By Rebecca Goodman
The Cincinnati Enquirer

The Rev. John R. Compton, former president of the Cincinnati NAACP and the first African-American to serve on the governing board of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), died April 19. He was 77.

Active in the civil rights movement of the 1960s, the Rev. Mr. Compton was part of the march on Washington led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1963 and helped organize visits to Cleveland by King.

The Rev. Mr. Compton came to Cincinnati in 1948 to become pastor of the Wehrman Avenue Christian Church. Prior to that, he had served at a church in Palestine, Texas, after graduating from Jarvis Christian College there. During his 30 years as pastor at the Wehrman Avenue church, the growth of the congregation necessitated a move to a larger building. With the move came a new name – the United Christian Church.

After he left that assignment, the Rev. Mr. Compton provided leadership in the regional and national offices of the Christian Church. He was the first African-American to serve as regional minister (for the church in Indiana) and as president for a unit (the division of homeland ministries). He was administrator of the National Convocation of the Christian Church, and administrator of the reconciliation mission, the church’s race and poverty program.

He also served on the church’s 16-member general cabinet, wrote numerous articles for the church’s magazine and lectured at the Christian Theological Seminary.

After his retirement, the Rev. Mr. Compton served the Bond Hill Christian Church, overseeing the merger of that African-American church with the white Forest Park Christian Church. The resulting church is known as the Kemper Road Christian Church.

The Rev. Mr. Compton received awards from Jarvis Christian College, Cincinnati Community Action Now, the NAACP and honorary doctorates from Lynchburg College and the Christian Theological Seminary.

In 1988, he received the Liberation Award from the National Convocation of the Christian Church and was inducted into the Jarvis Christian College Hall of Fame in 1995.

The Rev. Mr. Compton was a member of the Walnut Hills Area Council board, Victory Neighborhood Services Agency and the Cincinnati Model Cities board.

Finding and Using Music Resources for Contemporary Worship: Dana Scott

Do you often find yourself asking questions like how do I program music for a Contemporary service when I have a fixed budget? How do I build a consistent worship team when I cannot hire professional musicians? How can our evolving electronic world work for my music ministry?

The goal of this workshop is to empower you in your ministry. This session will address the unique challenges of creating a meaningful worship experience as you negotiate questions like those above. With a little creativity and innovation, you can overcome these struggles. Join us, and let’s get started!

 

Dana Scott

Dana Nichole Scott has worked for several years as a Music Minister.  She currently serves as the Accompanist and Praise Band Director for Emmanuel UMC in Laurel. As a pastor’s daughter, Dana was involved in music ministry in church from a young age. She attended two prestigious schools of music and honed her skills.

She teaches piano at the Saint James School in Hagerstown, Maryland and has additional students at Emmanuel UMC. She also enjoys accompanying the All Children’s Chorus of Annapolis, Arundel Vocal Arts Society, and on occasion the Maryland State Boys’ Choir.  Her clientele also includes: St. Agnes School, Landsdown High School, Loyola University, Loyola-Blakefield, Baltimore School of the Arts, Washington National Opera, and the University of Baltimore County. During her spare time, Dana directs productions in the area and finds time to give back to the community.