I am a practical theologian, pastor, spiritual guide, author, and leader in lay and pastoral faith formation. This fall I was Visiting Professor of Process Studies at Claremont School of Theology/Claremont Lincoln University. Prior to that I served as Director of Continuing Education and Professor of Practical Theology at Lancaster Theological Seminary (2003-2010). I also was co-pastor of Disciples United Community Church (a partnership Disciples of Christ/United Church of Christ congregation) from 2004-2010.
Prior to coming to Lancaster I served as acting Associate Dean, Assistant to the President for On-line Programs, and Adjunct Professor in Theology, Spirituality, and Pastoral Care at Wesley Theological Seminary (2000-2003). Always enjoying combining pastoral with teaching ministry, I have also served as interim minister in several UCC and Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) congregations. For seventeen years I served as Director of the Protestant Ministry and Adjunct Professor in Theology, Spirituality, and Medicine at Georgetown University and Medical School.
My passion is to join open spirited, bridge building progressive practical theological beliefs with life and health affirming holistic spiritual practices which can bring about personal and congregational healing and wholeness.
In addition, believing in an interdependent universe and an omni-active God with whom we are called to be powerfully transformative co-creators/partners, I am led to believe that current movements in “emergent” and “convergent” Christianity and globally based interfaith/inter-spiritual can one day heal our earth.
An ordained minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) with standing in the United Church of Christ, I have written twenty-three books in the areas of theology, spirituality, ministerial excellence and spiritual formation, and healing and wholeness, including Holy Adventure: Forty One Days of Audacious Living; God’s Touch: Faith, Wholeness and the Healing Miracles of Jesus; and Healing Worship: Purpose and Practice.
Celebrating 34 years in marriage and ministry in 2013, my wife, Kate Epperly, and I enjoy working together and we have co-authored three books on ministerial wholeness, excellence and spirituality: Feed the Fire: Avoiding Clergy Burnout; Four Seasons of Ministry: Gathering a Harvest of Righteousness; and Tending to the Holy: The Practice of the Presence of God in Ministry, selected as 2009 Book of the Year by the Academy of Parish Clergy.
My most recent books are Starting with Spirit: Nurturing Your Call to Pastoral Ministry, Philippians: An Interactive Adult Bible Study and Process Theology: A Guide for the Perplexed; Emerging Process: Adventurous Theology for a Missional Church, The Center is Everywhere: Celtic Spirituality for a Postmodern Age, and Healing Marks: Spirituality and Healing in Mark’s Gospel.
Always exploring new horizons, I am currently working on texts related to the spirituality of grandparenting, Acts of the Apostles as a postmodern gospel, the spirituality of blessing, and emerging theology and spiritual formation.
I speak regularly throughout North America on subjects such as: healing and wholeness, personal and congregational spiritual formation, process theology, ministerial spirituality and excellence, emerging Christianity, and contemporary movements in theology and spirituality. Over the years, I have appeared on Nightline, ABC World News Tonight, and PBS News Hour.