This is an invitation to a conversation on the pastoral life from one of America’s most respected clergy. Dean Lueking shares the fruits and foibles of his 50 years in parish minstry, 44 of them in the same congregation, Grace Lutheran in River Forest, Illinois. A lively storyteller, Lueking writes as the wise friend and colleague every pastor would hope to have. He gives life to a truth many congregational leaders will recognize: a congregation never stands still but is at once new and old, vexing and inspiring, lively and dull. It is life-giving year after year, in quiet moments and in open view.
Lueking writes out of gratitude for the colleagues in ministry who over the years offered him a listening ear and an understanding heart. His words affirm what pastors are already doing while sparking dialogue about his suggestions and provoking new insights and understanding. This volume offers a glimpse of a larger vision for one’s life and ministry that comes not from within but from God. Lueking joins theological reflection with the realities of congregation and community. Recalling the spiritual and intellectual exchanges with other authors that have enriched him throughout his ministry, he offers encouragement to all who serve congregations.