Finding More to Preach About

July 23, 2014

By David Telfort, AoP'12

IMG_7871My call to preach was confirmed in my sophomore year of college. I was in an internship at a financial firm and although I enjoyed my work I felt unfulfilled. I read a book that shifted my theological framework, “Cold Anger: A Story of Faith and Power Politics”. The book confirmed for me that God cares about our lives on earth as much as the desire that we make it to heaven. The book freed me to preach a gospel of justice, love and reconciliation. In the summer of 2011, through the Forum for Theological Exploration I was introduced to the Academy of Preachers (AoP). In AoP I found an organization that helps to refine and polish the gifts of communication God has given me.

Often meaningful messages do not reach their impact-potential because of the way they are communicated. During AoP’s preaching camp and my subsequent involvement in their festivals I learned effective ways of exchanging ideas. I learned that preaching is much more than exegesis of a passage. Preaching is body posturing, hand movement and identifying with one’s audience. AoP has pushed me to expand my idea of what preaching is and what it can be, beyond the bounds of my tradition.

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AoP Launching Out

July 14, 2014

By Dwight Moody

Dwight A. Moody Dwight A. Moody

Last week, in a meeting at Shaker Village at Pleasant Hill (Kentucky) seven (of the eight) members of the Board of Directors met to assume legal and fiduciary responsibility for the Academy of Preachers. It was a grand and historic occasion; who knows where all of this will lead.

Shaker Village was a suitable place: old, sturdy, self sufficient community on a weekend of spectacular weather, bluegrass and choral music, and more food than we could possibly enjoy. Even the moon was phenomenal. Shaker Village itself, now reborn as a tourist and meeting destination, was home to a community of believers, one that lasted 150 years. May our Academy of Preachers be so blessed.

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“God Whispered To Me”

July 7, 2014

By Dwight Moody

Dwight A. Moody “It was amazing to be in such a Spirit-filled environment, people of all different backgrounds, styles, and interpretations. It made me happy to be a preacher again.”

So wrote one Young Preacher in assessing his experience at the National Festival of Young Preachers.

I don’t know his or her name, any more than I know the name of any of the other 194 Young Preachers who participated in our Five Year AoP Assessment Project.

This project consisted of a ten-minute on-line questionnaire designed by our Director of Assessments and Research, Dr. Lori Carrell. Dr. Carrell is a Distinguished Professor of Communication at the University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh.

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From South to North!

July 3, 2014

By Wyndee Holbrook

EmilyOwensWithin the past week AoP held two Festivals and the sermons of 26 Young Preachers were heard in Atlanta, GA and Green Lake, WI.  Both Festivals were hosted by Baptists, but of differing stripes. All followed the theme, “Tell Me a Story” sharing from their lives and biblical texts.

Sixteen of the Young Preachers gathered during the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship’s General Assembly in Atlanta.  Their presence packed out the room and gave everyone reason to get there first next year!  This was true of the Young Preachers as well, since the 16 spots filled up a month in advance with four on the waiting list.

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Two New National Partners

July 1, 2014

By Dwight Moody

187A0195The Academy of Preachers welcomes two new National Partners, bringing our total to 78 toward a goal of 100 by the end of t\2014.

Number 77 is The Speaker’s Studio, a new business venture launched this year by Kate Bringardner.

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IMG 8203 150x150 Welcome Anderson University!

Dwight A. Moody

We welcome as our newest National Partner: Anderson University and School of Theology.

In some ways, they are not new to us. I have visited their campus, just northwest of Indianapolis, several times; and last year two of their most outstanding young preachers came to Atlanta to preach in the 2013 National Festival of Young Preachers: Jenny Marble AoP ’13 and Tim Quainoo AoP ‘13.

Jenny was later selected as a 2013 Gospel Catalysts (and is now an associate pastor in her home state of Oregon); and Tim (accompanied by his father and brother) came to New York this past September and preached in the 2013 New York Regional Festival of Young Preachers.

In his letter of Partnership Anderson Dean David L. Sebastian mentioned these two Anderson students: “We are so thankful to … the Academy of Preachers for the hospitality and great support you have already shown to School of Theology students at the 2013 National Festival of Preaching. Jenny Marble and Tim Quainoo had nothing but rave reviews for their experience in that event.”

Anderson Professor of Pastoral Theology Dr. Guy Brewer, will be a featured presenter at the 2014 Festival in Indianapolis. He teaches the preaching courses at Anderson and will focus on preaching and pastoral care in his workshop at the National Festival.

Anderson School of Theology is a seminary of the Church of God—Anderson. “It is not a denomination,” explained Jenny when I enquired. “It is a movement.” She uses that language in her featured video on the AoP YouTube Channel. It is an excellent, 8 minute video and very much worth watching.

The seminary has approached the AoP about sponsoring a regional or denominational festival in conjunction with their national convention in June of 2014, and we are eager to help them transfer the energy, enthusiasm, and opportunity of our National Festival to the entire network of people, congregations, and institutions of their movement.

Anderson joins a growing network of AoP Partners in Indiana: others include University of Evansville, Christ Church Cathedral, Presbyterian USA Foundation, Oakland City University, Howard Park Christian Church, Dehoney Travel, Community Presbyterian Church, Christian Church of Indiana, Christian Theological Seminary, Bethany Theological Seminary, Indiana Network for Higher Education Ministries, Indiana-Kentucky Conference of the United Church of Christ, Indian Wesley University/Wesley Seminary, and, of course, the Lilly Endowment.

The Academy of Preachers seeks businesses, congregations, organizations, denominations, and institutions that endorse our mission and wish to support our programs. Visit the web site here for more information on how you can become a National Partner; review also the complete list of 118 Founding and National Partners. Then give me a call!

— Welcome Anderson University!