Category: Practitioners

Dirk Dalhausser & Kerry Jones on Building Churches

How often do you think about what goes into building a church? Tony has thought about this a great deal and invites Dirk Dalhausser and Kerry Jones of Goff Companies to talk about the various dimensions of constructing a church building, from initial planning to post-construction visits. The discussion includes surprising insights about parking, seating, commons areas, and even baptismal space. This “nuts and bolts” discussion may help you plan your own church project, or appreciate the architectural logic of the sanctuary that you attend.

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Jeff Rose on Street Preaching (Encore Presentation)

Most people view street preachers as fanatical or crazy. Research on Religion takes the time to discuss the motivation, challenges, and benefits of choosing “open air preaching” as a means of spreading the Gospel. This is one of Tony’s favorite podcasts, dating back to 2011, as it provides and up-close-and-personal look with an actual street preacher, people we often don’t take the time to understand. This interview dispels a number of stereotypes people may have of those who preach the Gospel in open air.

We will return soon with a number of new interviews.

Margaret Taylor-Ulizio on Being a Canon Lawyer

If the Catholic Church has canon law, there must be canon lawyers, right?! There are, and we were able to track down and invite Dr. Margaret Taylor-Ulizio to talk about her career path to canon law and what canon lawyers do. While canon law covers a wide range of issues from property rights to employment, we spend time talking about marriage nullity, which comes up with relative frequency and is something that Dr. Taylor-Ulizio has been specializing in recently.

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Marion Larson on Bubbles, Bridges, and Multifaith Engagement

In an increasingly pluralistic world, can Christians break out of their bubble and engage individuals from different faiths while still retaining their own spiritual identity. Prof. Marion Larson of Bethel University discusses how she and her co-author, Prof. Sara Shady, have approached this subject theoretically and as a matter of practical experience. Prof. Larson shares her thoughts on the topics of ecumenism, tolerance, and approaching others with an attitude of hospitality.

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Kelsey Dallas on Religious Journalism

Deseret News journalist Kelsey Dallas joins us to discuss her path towards religious news writing, the importance of the Religion News Association, and a number of the stories she has covered throughout the years. We talk about stories regarding life on other planets (and how it would affect religious believers), pilgrimages to Chimayo (New Mexico), football prayer circles, and what has become of the faith of all these Millennials. A wide-ranging, uplifting, and fun conversation.

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Michael Boone’s Spiritual 40 Day Road Trip

So, you are lying in an emergency room and the doctor tells you that he is going to restart your heart in two minutes, and it should work but things could still go wrong. What goes through your mind? A motorcycle road trip through the western United States, of course! At least that is what Michael Boone thought of, and then made it reality, picking up on a religious theme of 40 days in the wilderness and learning about letting go, listening closely, and learning what Sabbath really means. He shares his inspiring insights about what became a “journey of the heart” in more ways than one.

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Martin Barrett on Sozo Friends & For-Profit Charities

Can a for-profit business that is inspired by one’s religious faith act as an effective charity? While many folks think that most charities need to be “non-profit,” Sozo Friends, created and operated by our guest Martin Barrett, introduces a new model that teams with restaurants, auto dealers, and mortgage companies to use wine, coffee, and chocolate to help a wide variety of faith-based organizations. We discuss Mr. Barrett’s history (including his time in Young Life) and how he used his love of wine and Jesus to help orphans, at-risk youth, and victims of sex trafficking.

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Proeschold-Bell and Adams on Clergy Mental Health

While many parishioners often look to their pastor for emotional and spiritual support, it is not often that we think that members of the clergy need such psychological assistance as well. Nonetheless, the demands of the ministry can be highly demanding and their unique professional role may often lead to isolation from important social support networks. Profs. Rae Jean Proeschold-Bell (Duke) and Chris Adams (Azusa Pacific) discuss the results of a recent study on the mental health of ministers within the United Methodist Church. The focus is not only on trying to address negative mental health outcomes, but ways in which positive mental health predictors can be encouraged. We also talk about how one counselor (Dr. Adams) has put this research to use in his own role as a counselor to seminarians and missionaries.

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Gregory Popcak on Religion, Psychology, & Seven Longings

Can religion coexist with psychological counseling? While some tension has existed between these realms, Dr. Gregory Popcak explains how they are mutually facilitative and discusses his career as a Catholic psychologist. We also talk about his book “Broken Gods” and the why and how humans can become more like “god” (small “g”) and what that means. While it may sound blasphemous, Dr. Popcak notes this was a theme with such luminaries as St. Thomas Aquinas, John Calvin, and C.S. Lewis!

Visit our extensive archives to find more interesting interviews!

Jim McGuffey on Church Security (encore presentation)

In light of the horrific church shooting in South Carolina recently, we present a previously released episode related to one aspect of this news story: church security. While not the only angle to examine recent events from, the issue of church security has been one point of discussion.

Our prayers and condolences go out to all those affected by the events in Charleston.

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