A Once and Future Pastoral Star

March 5, 2008 by
Filed under: Religion 

At the Presbyterian Church of Lawrenceville this year we are blessed with three seminary interns.  All three of them have preached well at our church on different Sundays.  I have to write today about the intern who preached this past Sunday – she touched my soul in ways that are rare.  (Sorry Dave and Alissa – you did really well too but this one hit me deeply.)

Grier Booker Richards is a middler (2nd of 3 years) at Princeton Seminary.  She and I share one trait – both score as strong introverts on the Myers-Briggs scale.  That affects how people do ministry.  Most minsters are extroverts and the whole concept of ministry today is based around the ideal of the prophetic minister firing up his congregation with his charm.  Grier has charm – it’s just a different type of charm, more of a warm presence than a fiery presence.

Anyway, she preached on Sunday about the seminary experience and particularly about what brought her to hear her call.  In the sermon, she relates a story of tragedy and her response and her church’s response to an event that happened while serving as a lay youth ministry leader.  You’ll have to hear it for yourself – the audio version is HERE, and the text is HERE.  Listen to the audio version if you have the time – it’s much more powerful than the text.
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It’s very rare that a sermon has moved me to tears.  Grier has the ability to take an emotional story and relate it back to a spiritual concept.  She poured so much of herself into this sermon that it’s hard not to understand her point.

Coming soon to a pulpit near you – this once and future pastoral star.  Watch for her PIF in a few years.


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