A new report from Barna Group that examines the book buying and reading habits of pastors says most pastors still prefer to read hard copies of books despite an increase in the use of digital reading devices in recent years.
Nearly half of pastors now use a device that serves as an e-reader, an article containing highlights from the more than 80-page report states, and that number has nearly tripled in the last two years. But despite increasing e-book sales and decreasing print sales, more than half of pastors still prefer hardcover books to paper backs or e-books.
Pastors collectively purchase between 8 million and 13 million books per year, and each of them buys an average of 3.8 books each month. In comparison, only 29 percent of all American adults buy more than 10 books each year. more >>
Arvella Schuller, wife of the Rev. Robert H. Schuller and co-founder of the Crystal Cathedral Ministries, reportedly suffered a stroke and has been working with Medicare-provided therapists to regain use of her left arm and leg. Meanwhile, the current congregation of the Orange County megachurch prepares for a major move and has taken on a new name.
The Orange County Register reports that Mrs. Schuller, 83, experienced a stroke earlier this month and was just released from a local hospital. Her daughter, Carol Schuller Milner, told the publication that her mother is "wiped out" but received a positive evaluation from doctors.
"She faired [sic] really well considering. We're really blessed," said Milner, adding that Mrs. Schuller is a bit frustrated that she now has to be so focused on herself after spending so many years in ministry focusing on others. more >>
Pastor Joel Osteen of Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas, said in a recent interview that churches are changing with the times and people are becoming less interested in specific denominations.
"It seems like the churches that are changing with the times ... and making the Scripture relevant, that's what's really important. People are not as interested, at least in what I see, in the denominational name. I don't see that," Osteen said in an interview with the York Daily Record ahead of the A Night of Hope worship event on May 31 in Hershey, Pa.
"The times have changed where people are not so set on going to a particular denomination. ... I have friends who were staunch Baptists and now they don't even put Baptist in their name," added the pastor, who leads a nondenominational congregation of over 40,000. more >>
Seattle-based megachurch pastor Mark Driscoll took his latest criticism from some within the Christian community about the way he handled the topic of the earth's environment while joking at a recent Christian leadership conference as an opportunity to write about his environmentally conscious family and how humor can be found in parts of the Bible.
One point of contention about his talk at the Catalyst Conference in Dallas was his statement (joke) in which he said, "I know who made the environment. He's coming back, and he's going to burn it all up. So yes, I drive an SUV."
Another point of controversy brought up by bloggers and some religion reporters, was his comment: "If you drive a mini-van, you're a mini-man." more >>
Plans for Southern California pastor and evangelist Greg Laurie to bring his large-scale Harvest Crusade events back to Orange County, Calif., for three nights of biblically-based preaching and performances by popular Christian recording artists were announced Wednesday. The outreach is scheduled to take place in Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Aug. 23-25.
Laurie recently spoke during the National Day of Prayer event in Washington, D.C., in which he focused his prayer on asking for God's forgiveness and seeking a revival for America, noting that although "we have forgotten God, He has not forgotten us."
In addition to the Southern California Harvest, Laurie and Harvest Ministries will host the Philadelphia Harvest at the Wells Fargo Center on Sept. 28, 29. The event will be simulcast to thousands of locations nationwide for a coast-to-coast evangelistic outreach called Harvest America. more >>
The long-awaited trial of Singapore's popular pastor, Kong Hee of City Harvest Church, began on Wednesday, with a prosecutor stating that the church leader conspired with five others to misuse $41 million in church funds to help promote the career of his pop-star wife, Ho Yeow Sun.
"The evidence will show that the offenses were part of a deliberately planned, meticulously coordinated and carefully executed scheme," said prosecutor Mavis Chionh, according to Bloomberg.com.
Many from the City Harvest congregation queued up outside the Singapore court house at the start of the trial, the Associated Press reported, showing their support for the troubled pastor. The church and its affiliates are said to have a membership of more than 30,000, making it one of the biggest and richest worship groups in the region. more >>