Showing posts from January, 2021

Declining Churches Searching for the Silver Bullet Pastor

  The problem of declining churches in America was nothing new when the COVID-19 pandemic first struck in March 2020. I tend to ignore 2020 through 2022 when measuring whether a church has declined. But let’s be honest: if you look back to March 2020 and compare your attendance and financial giving back then to that of today, in March 2024, and both are lower, on average, by more than a few percent, your church has declined. If you had a children’s ministry before the pandemic, and you now struggle to wrangle up more than a few kids on a typical Sunday, you have declined. Your church needs revitalization. Sure, there are other, less tangible measures of health. How are you doing evangelistically? Are you reaching your neighborhood with the gospel? Are you making disciples? Maybe your church has already taken proactive steps in the direction of revitalization. Perhaps you’ve already decided to make some hard decisions rather than kicking the can down the road. If so, good on you! Sadl

Pastoral Leadership and an Ethic of Artificial Human Intelligence Enhancement

A paper from a class: Ethics in Christian Ministry Leadership and Education (CLED 815), Liberty University, Rawlings School of Divinity by Bart L. Denny, Th.M. December 14, 2020 You might find this a strange article, but I believe pastoral leaders will soon have to deal with the possibilities explored here not as science fiction, but as a medical reality our people are considering. Cybernetics—the melding of electronic and computer systems with the human nervous system—seems to hold the genuine possibility of healing diseases with a neurological basis.   However, many futurists dream of far more than the restoration of normal functioning; they see a human race on the cusp of forcing its own “evolution,” with the melding of the human mind and artificially intelligent computer systems. The desired result is a cybernetic transhuman, with intelligence far beyond normal human cognition and perhaps even the ability to attain immortality. Such an eventuality smacks of humanity’s desire to be