Speaking

Chris regularly speaks before churches, colleges, and groups in various other settings. A typical lecture lasts forty minutes, followed by thirty minutes of Q&A. Two to three lectures may be given in the same day for an extended seminar event.

Below are some of the talks that Chris has delivered in the past. Presentations may also be tailored to meet the audience’s interest and needs.

Invite Chris to speak

The Unfinished Reformation: What Unites and Divides Catholics and Protestants

Five hundred years ago, a Catholic monk nailed a list of grievances to the door of a church in Germany and launched a revolution in the history of Christianity. Today, a number of unresolved issues continue to stand between Protestant and Catholic churches, and many experience this ongoing division among friends, neighbors, and even family. In view of these realities, this lesson explains where lines of continuity and difference fall in the present moment of history and concludes by considering implications for life and ministry at the Catholic/Protestant intersection.

Resources

  1. Understanding and Relating to Mary: A Conversation with Timothy George 
  2. The Pope Offers Mercy—Protestants Won’t Be Indulged
  3. Did Luther Really Split the Church?
  4. Pope vs. Pope: What Does the Catholic Church Really Think about Martin Luther?

Talking with Catholics about the Gospel: Sharing the Good News among Catholic Friends and Loved Ones

How can we understand and relate to Catholics in spiritual conversations? This lesson provides an easy-to-follow introduction to Catholic beliefs, followed by an overview of the three general types of Catholics in America today: the Traditionalist, the Evangelical, and the Cultural. Insights into the values and priorities of these groups lay valuable groundwork for understanding how to promote fruitful, grace-filled interactions with Catholic friends.

Resources

  1. TGC Interview
  2. Reaching Catholics in Your Community
  3. Understanding and Relating to Catholics
  4. Holy Ground: Walking with Jesus as a Former Catholic
  5. Talking with Catholics about the Gospel

What Was the Protestant Reformation (and What Is Its Enduring Significance)?

First and foremost, the Protestant Reformation of the sixteenth century was a movement of gospel renewal in the church and institutions of society. As a result, men and women returned to Scripture and a particular understanding of salvation, igniting what some have described as “another Pentecost” or “light after darkness.” In this 500-year commemoration of Luther’s Reformation (dated from 1517), we will have opportunity to consider how our current appropriation of the Reformation legacy has potential to stimulate gospel renewal in our present historical moment.

Resources

  1. Significance of the Reformation for Families and Churches
  2. Preaching in Sixteenth Century Italy
  3. Church Tradition in the Reformation
  4. Catholic or Protestant: The Basic Difference

How to Equip a Congregation or Institution for Constructive Engagement with Catholics

Many of us serve in communities with large Catholic populations, and so fulfilling our calling to equip the church or lead an organization means facing both challenges and opportunities to promote Christ among our Roman Catholic neighbors and constituents. Unfortunately, many Protestants struggle to do this well. We either come off as pit bulls foaming at the mouth—equating fidelity to the gospel with anti-Catholicism—or we’re so open minded that our theological brains fall out of our heads. Over and against these extremes, we are called to maintain the grace and truth balance of our Lord Jesus Christ. This session explores what that balance might look like in your context and develops strategies for helping you to maintain it.

Resources

  1. Solution to the Evangelical-Catholic Divide
  2. How Evangelicals Think about Pope Francis
  3. Small Groups that Attract Catholics
  4. Interview with the Reformed Forum

Embodying and Communicating the Gospel

Because God has given his Church the greatest message in the world, we, of all people, should be the clearest and most compelling communicators. Unfortunately, due to a dearth of attention and training, most evangelicals are unable to clearly articulate their faith. According to a recent National Barna Survey, only fifty-five percent of American adults who identify as “Born Again” have actually shared their faith in the last twelve months. Among them, those who feel competent in doing so are miniscule. This session, in addition to clarifying the nature and purpose of gospel outreach, seeks to help us relate the message of Christ in ways that are winsome, relevant, and compelling.

Resources

  1. Not Without Hope
  2. The Challenge of Ministry to Today’s Students (And What We Should Do About It)
  3. Humility in Evangelism
  4. We Need Renewal
  5. Fear No More
  6. Power to Save