Year: 2009

Opening Night For Dad

I wrote this to several of my father’s closest friends after his funeral.  Enclosed was a special gift for each of them. Many years ago, one of Dad’s several dreams as a young man was to sing professionally as an operatic tenor.  He worked at developing his voice with the same discipline and enthusiasm he applied to everything else he did.  One of his life’s greatest disappointments was the day hi ...[Read More]

Introduction For Dr. Os Guinness – The Gathering 2009

Over the years I’ve noticed that people make three basic mistakes in introducing Os Guinness.  The most common is their trying so hard to sound as smart, educated, articulate, well-read, urbane, witty and provocative as Os that they badly overshoot the mark and end up sounding like their remarks were prepared by a graduate student eager to please the professor.  The second trap is spending so much ...[Read More]

Introduction for Tim Keller – The Gathering 2009

Two years ago when Tim was last with us we introduced him in the context of a growing movement toward cultural, political and social engagement among young evangelicals. It was apparent then that we were entering a new phase of evangelicalism that was waiting for someone to articulate a theology that is more than proclamation but also more than well-intentioned and superficial social action. That ...[Read More]

Opening Talk – The Gathering 2009

Eight years ago here at Phoenecian I made some opening remarks for the first time.  As you recall, that was September 2001 and we had just experienced the still incomprehensible attack on the twin towers, the Pentagon and the resistance of those brave passengers on Flight 93 led by Todd Beamer.  Someone told me I needed to say something at the very beginning of our time together that week-end.  Si ...[Read More]

Introduction for Erwin McManus – The Gathering 2009

In Wendell Berry’s book, Jayber Crow, he describes life in the small river town of Port William, Kentucky. That’s far removed from Erwin’s place of birth, El Salvador, or where he currently lives, Los Angeles. However, I think Wendell Berry points to something that illustrates Erwin and why he is so unique. Berry depicts the young ministers who come to town as “those who had learned to have a very ...[Read More]

Introduction for Austin Gutwein – The Gathering 2009

Last year a friend passed along a new book announcement to me and asked me if I had ever heard of Austin or his new book – Take Your Best Shot. I had not…so I passed it along to Steve Haas at World Vision who wrote back that he knew Austin and his family and they were terrific. I passed that note along to Michael Hyatt at Nelson Publishing who passed my note along to Dan Gutwein, Austin’s father. ...[Read More]

Introduction for Peter Greer – Hope International Dallas Breakfast

Several years ago at The Gathering conference we began to focus on young leaders of growing ministries. Over time this has become one of the most popular classes at the conference as everyone looks to this session as an encouragement, a challenge and a glimpse inside the work God is doing in a generation of globally connected and imaginative young men and women. We have hosted George Srour, the yo ...[Read More]