June 3, 2008
Poster Couple for Global Change
Rick, Kay Warren on iTunes U reach out to younger evangelicals.
Saddleback church's Rick Warren and his wife Kay have never been shy about using computer technology to get out the messages of their respective books (mega-seller "Purpose Driven Life" and Kay's new book, "Dangerous Surrender").
But a new opportunity opened up recently with their joint appearance at Gordon College, Wenham, Mass., near Boston, where Rick delivered the graduation commencement address.
Gordon President Jud Carlberg and his wife Jan separately video-interviewed Rick and Kay respectively and the full interviews (as well as the commencement address) are now featured at:
During the commencement address, Gordon College notes:
[Warren] said students should invest their lives in things that will last such as God's Word and human relationships. "It's not the duration of your life that matters, it's the donation."
At the end of May, I spent time with both Warrens at Saddleback church during the recent 2008 Purpose Driven Community Gathering, where Rick launched PEACE 2.0, an updated version of the PEACE Plan he launched several years ago.
At Saddleback, the Warrens have an unusual ability to put people at ease and insert humor into situations. At one point during the three-day event, Rick made a comment about his own marriage when suddenly Kay (off-stage in the green room) walked on stage and comically threw a shoe across the stage at him. Of course, they kissed and made up, but the laughter that resulted added a human touch.
Later on, during an evening breakout session on HIV and Christian ministry (or rather the lack thereof), Kay invited a church-goer with HIV to share his story on the spot. For the first time in public, he admitted to being HIV positive and that he had been "hiding in the pew" for years, not telling anyone. His message to pastors was a simple one: Don't suppose your own church doesn't have people like him.
It was a powerful witness.
Why are so many Christian leaders critical of Saddleback's strategies?