Rev. Edgar Diaz is Senior Pastor at Tampa First Hispanic Church of the Nazarene. He has served as Director of the New Start and Hispanic Ministries in the Florida District. He will be one of the featured preachers at the NTS Hugh C. Benner Preachers Conference this September. CPL: You have a very diverse educational background. How did you end up in pastoral ministry?When I left the army, I started my university studies and began working at Hewlett Packard where I held several management positions.
Jon Middendorf has served as Senior Pastor at Oklahoma City First Church of the Nazarene since August of 2007 and as Youth Pastor, Sr. Associate and Pastor of Student Ministries prior to that. He will be one of the featured speakers at the NTS CPL 2017 Preachers Conference (Finding Your Rhythm: Preaching the Church Year, September 26-27) on the NTS Campus. In this CPL interview Jon talks about ministry over the long haul – its joys, challenges and his hopes for the future.
Pastor Megan M. Pardue’s preaching context is a little outside the norm: she pastors a house church and shares with the CPL about the challenges and joys of conversational preaching. CPL: How did you become pastor of Refuge?I have been a member of Refuge since 2009. When I graduated from Duke Divinity School in 2012, I was without a ministry position. The pastor of the church at that time had accepted a call to another church and, to my joy and surprise, the church called me to be their pastor.
Rev. Charles Tillman is the pastor of Woodville Church of the Nazarene in Richmond Virginia. Rev. Tillman was one of our featured guest on campus during Black History month. He is also heading up the new NTS Center for Black Leadership which seeks to better resource our black pastors and invest in the next generation of black leaders.
JR. Forasteros, Teaching Pastor at Catalyst Community Church in Dallas, TX, sat down with the CPL recently to reflect on his pastoral journey, his increasing love for collaborative ministry and why the best resources for good preaching might include some books you’d least expect. CPL: Give us some background on your preaching context and the demographic of your church. Catalyst is a church of about 250 people in the suburbs of Dallas. I have been serving here for 2 ½ years.
Dr. Andy Johnson has been busy! Last month we highlighted his new commentary called 1 and 2 Thessalonians. Now, Dr. Johnson has released his second book, called "Holiness and the Missio Dei." In Holiness and the Missio Dei, Dr. Johnson takes the reader on a biblical journey that explores the question of what holiness or sanctification has to do with God's mission in the world. He refuses to relegate the idea of humans becoming holy to the realm of individual inward piety or legalism, on the one hand, or to the realm of the impossible prior to Christ's return, on the other.
"Neuroscience and Christian Formation," by Dr. Dean G. Blevins, Professor of Practical Theology and Christian Discipleship This new book contains an amazing collection of essays written by practical theologians gathered by Dr. Dean G. Blevins (Nazarene Theological Seminary) and Dr. Mark A. Maddix (Point Loma Nazarene University). It serves as an introductory textbook and resource for Christian education and formation professors to use in Christian education or Christian formation courses at the college or seminary level.
Dr. Andy Johnson, professor of New Testament at NTS, recently published 1 and 2 Thessalonians in The Two Horizons New Testament Commentary series. The Two Horizons series offers a unique approach to biblical exegesis with a paragraph-by-paragraph engagement with the text that is deliberately theological in focus. Dr. Andy Johnson's new commentary on 1 and 2 Thessalonians is now available in paperback. His commentary approaches the biblical text theologically and will greatly contribute to your understanding of the Thessalonian letters.
Josh Broward moved from Korea to the US and from senior to associate pastor when he took his post at Duneland Community Church. Here he reflects on the transition and the joys of his present assignment. CPL: Tell us about the church you serve, its history and the community where it is located.Duneland Community Church was started 70 years ago as Chesterton Church of the Nazarene. Chesterton is a quiet town on the far eastern edge of the Chicago area in NW Indiana, so we have both high-level professionals who work in Chicago and "townies" who rarely leave the county.
Pastor Marissa Coblentz speaks poignantly about life in the rural church – its challenges and joys. CPL: Tell us about your current ministry assignment and how you landed there.My husband and I co-pastor a small church in rural Missouri. When I tell the story of how we landed there, it starts with babysitting. I really hate babysitting (even though I love my friends' kids!) After graduating from seminary, I was staying home with my one-year-old son and pregnant with our little girl when I decided that I needed another source of income and a creative outlet so I could escape from babysitting. My husband and I had planned to wait until our children were a little older before we pursued any type of ministerial position.
Jason Veach is an NTS alum and Lead Pastor at Eden Community Church in Portland Oregon. CPL: Tell us how Eden Community started and how you chose your name. Eden Community began in 2012 as a parent-affiliated congregation of Portland First Church of the Nazarene in Portland, Oregon. I was called to plant this new work with the aim of creating a community that would connect with Portland's younger adults, the unchurched, and religious disenfranchised. In 2015, Eden Community was fully organized and exists now as an independent, self-sustaining church. The word Eden comes from Genesis 2 and means "delight." Eden represents God's intention for the world, a place where creation flourishes and exists in loving, trust-filled relationship.
Rev. Christa Klosterman is currently on special assignment serving two United Methodist congregations, one in Fruitland, ID and the other in Ontario, Oregon. She will be one of the featured preachers at the 2017 NTS Hugh C. Benner Preachers Conference. CPL: What are the most challenging aspects to pastoring a circuit?I still haven’t figured out how to be in 2 places at the same time! There can be a nagging feeling of being divided. The demands on my time and making decision about how everything is going to fit together are more pronounced with two churches. It is also challenging to try and give direction to 2 congregations going in different directions. As for preaching, the reality is there is only time to write one sermon which sometimes makes the sermon a little less personal. But there is time to write a good sermon, for which I am grateful. I’ve…