Long Ministry
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Passion and plodding in pastoral ministry

Religion | Early zeal for evangelism propelled Brad Evans into ministry, but 38 years of shepherding a congregation through disagreements taught him steadiness
by Charissa Koh
Posted 12/29/20, 05:09 pm

Fifth in a series on long ministry

Brad Evans grew up in western Pennsylvania in a family that attended church only at Christmas and Easter. At age 16, Evans professed faith in Christ after hearing John 6:37 at a summer youth retreat: “Whoever comes to me I will never cast out.”

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Kevin Schoen

Friends and farewells

Religion | For Maynard and Joan Schoen, the more years of church ministry, the harder the goodbyes
by Charissa Koh
Posted 5/21/20, 05:26 pm

Fourth in a series on long ministry

Fresh out of seminary, Maynard Schoen arrived with his wife, Joan, in Jonesville, Mich., in 1961 to pastor a small church there. The church had 40 people and no bathroom—only an outhouse. Maynard devoted himself to his new role and made friends among the congregation, but he wasn’t destined to stay: After a few years, another church asked him to become its pastor. 

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Torin Olsen

Working for the kingdom

Religion | God’s calling on Tom Sharkey’s life seemed irresistible, but 31 years of pastoring a sometimes-resistant flock was challenging
by Charissa Koh
Posted 4/23/20, 05:02 pm

Third in a series on long ministry

Atheist Tom Sharkey became a Christian in college and was surprised when people urged him to become a pastor. “I kept hearing the word preach,” he says. “I just kept trying to push that out of my mind.” When a campus ministry asked him to preach for its service, he said no. But the group insisted, and afterward he received positive feedback. 

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