Pastor Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 58 quotes )
The author urges taking the pulse of the church outside our own neighborhood. More church attending Presbyterians in Ghana than Scotland, and while Western pastors beg to fill seats, some African pastors are asking people only to attend every second or third week to give room for others in packed churches.
What was it, he wondered for the hundredth time, that enabled Pastor Harris to hear the answers in his heart? What did he mean when he said he felt God’s presence? Steve supposed he could ask Pastor Harris directly, but he doubted that would do any good. How could anyone explain such a thing? It would be like describing colors to someone blind from birth: The words might be understood, but the concept would remain mysterious and private.
A suburban pastor maintained services appropriate for his respected, professional parish. His father, an excitable traveling evangelist, visited and challenged the congregation to confront pride and sing out loudly with the windows open. The next day, the pastor’s banker mentioned overhearing, and he was sheepish. The buttoned-up banker said, though, that the neighborhood had been WAITING TO HEAR the church live out the joy they claimed.
We are not being true to the artist as a man if we consider his art work junk simply because we differ with his outlook on life. Christian schools, Christian parents, and Christian pastors often have turned off young people at just this point. Because the schools, the pastors, and the parents did not make a distinction between technical excellence and content, the whole of much great art has been rejected with scorn and ridicule. Instead, if the artist's technical excellence is high, he is to be praised for this, even if we differ with his world view. Man must be treated fairly as man.
To her own heart, which was shaped exactly like a valentine, there came a winglike palpitation, a delicate exigency, and all the fragrance of all the flowery springtime love affairs that ever were seemed waiting for them in the whisky bottle. To mingle their pain their handshake had promised them, was to produce a separate entity, like a child that could shift for itself, and they scrambled hastily toward this profound and pastoral experience.
You miss the whole point, Pastor. What I did was wrong, but I couldn't stop myself. Why couldn't I stop myself? Because of what I am. I wasn't born this way. I became a man with a lot of problems, not because of my DNA, but because of what society demanded. Lock ' em up. Punish the hell out of them. And if you make a few monsters along the way, to bad.
She knew things that nobody had ever told her... She knew the world was a stallion rolling in the blue pastor of ether. She knew that God tore down the old world every evening and built a new one every sun-up. It was wonderful to see it take form with the sun and emerge from the gray dust of its making.
And it was never but once a year that they were brought together anyway, and that was on the neutral, dereligionized ground of Thanksgiving, when everybody gets to eat the same thing, nobody sneaking off to eat funny stuff--no kugel, no gefilte fish, no bitter herbs, just one colossal turkey for two hundred and fifty million people--one colossal turkey feeds all. A moratorium on the three-thousand-year-old nostalgia of the Jews, a moratorium on Christ and the cross and the crucifixion of the Christians, when everyone in New Jersey and elsewhere can be more passive about their irrationalities than they are the rest of the year. A moratorium on all the grievances and resentments, and not only for the Dwyers and the Levovs but for everyone in America who is suspicious of everyone else. It is the American pastoral par excellence and it lasts twenty-four hours.
Laziness and cowardice explain why so many men. . . remain under a life-long tutelage and why it is so easy for some men to set themselves up as the guardians of all the rest. . . If I have a book which understands for me, a pastor who has a conscience for me, a doctor who decides my diet, I need not trouble myself. If I am willing to pay, I need not think. Others will do it for me.
The people, especially in the villages, know nothing at all of Christian doctrine; and many pastors are sadly unfit and incompetent to teach. Yet all are called Christians, have been baptized, and enjoy the use of the Sacrament, although they know neither the Lord's Prayer, nor the Creed, nor the Ten Commandments...
The test of man then is not, 'How have I believed?' but 'How have I loved?'. The final test of religion is not religiousness, but love: not what I have done, not what I have believed, not what I have achieved, but how I have discharged the common charities of life. Sins of commission in that awful indictment are not even referred to. By what we have not done, by sins of omission, we are judged. It could not be otherwise. For the withholding of love is the negation of the Spirit of Christ, the proof that we never knew Him, that for us He lived in vain. Pastor Henry Drummond, 1890
As for my faith: I've become my father's son-that is, I've become the kind of believer that Pastor Merrill used to be. Doubt one minute, faith the next-sometimes inspired, sometimes in despair. Canon Campbell taught me to ask myself a question when the latter state settles upon me. Whom do I know who's alive whom I love? Good question-one that can bring you back to life. These days, I love Dan Needham and the Rev. Katherine Keeling; I know I love them because I worry about them-Dan should lose some weight, Katherine should gain some! What I feel for Hester isn't exactly love; I admire her-she's certainly been a more heroic survivor than I've been, and her kind of survival is admirable. And then there are those distant, family ties that pass for love-I'm talking about Noah and Simon, about Aunt Martha and Uncle Alfred. I look forward to seeing them every Christmas.
If a night-moth were to concentrate its will on flying to a star or some equally unattainable object, it wouldn't succeed. Only, it wouldn't even try in the first place. A moth confines its search to what has sense and value for it, what it needs, what is indispensable to its life... if I imagined that I wanted under all circumstances to get to the North Pole, then to achieve it I would have to desire it strongly enough that my whole being was ruled by it. But if I were to decide to will that the pastor should stop wearing his glasses, it would be useless. That would be making a game of it.
But in every church there are people who, for reasons which seem sufficient to them, do not approve of their pastor and seek to harry him and bully him into some condition pleasing to themselves. The democracy which the Reformation brought into the Christian Church rages in their bosoms like a fire; they would deny that they regard their clergyman as their spiritual hired hand, whom they boss and oversee for his own good, but that is certainly the impression they give to observers.