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Annual Lectures on Preaching to focus on performative power

Sept. 13, 2005

Abilene Christian University’s annual Lectures on Preaching sponsored by the College of Biblical Studies will take place Thursday, Sept. 15 with the theme “Preaching with Performative Power.”

Registration for the lectures begins at 8:30 a.m. in the Onstead-Packer Biblical Studies Building at ACU and will conclude with a time of worship at 4 p.m. in the Chapel on the Hill. Three lectures and a panel discussion will be held throughout the day in the Chapel on the Hill as well as a tribute luncheon honoring James Burton Coffman and Franklin D. Florence held in the Hilton Room at noon.

Coffman, who celebrated his 100th birthday on May 24, was baptized during the ACC Bible Lectureship in 1923, and he preached his first sermon at College Church of Christ in Abilene beginning more than 60 years of ministry.

Florence has committed the past 35 years of his life to the Central Church of Christ in Rochester, New York.He has served the West Palm Beach congregation in Florida, was active in several organizations, including F.I.G.H.T., which works for social justice and equality, and has catalyzed reform in the Rochester community and public schools.

“Lectures on Preaching hopes to encourage preachers in the development of their craft, and so to promote better preaching in our churches,” said Dr. Mark Love, director of ministry events.

Stephen Johnson, assistant professor of preaching at ACU will begin the lectures with worship and a message entitled “Dancing in the Maquiladoras” (Revelation 18) at 9 a.m. At 10:15 a.m. Paul Scott Wilson, professor of preaching at Emmanuel College in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, will present “Preaching with Performative Power.”

A panel discussion will be held at 11:15 a.m. with Wilson, Johnson, Eddie Sharp, instructor of Bible at ACU and pulpit minister of University Church of Christ, and Bert Reynolds, preaching minister for the Chanal Valley Church of Christ in Little Rock, Ark., serving as the panel members.

Johnson will give the afternoon lecture entitled “Preaching as Apocalypse: Revelation as Sermon” at 1:45 p.m. At 3 p.m., Wilson will lead the afternoon worship service and present a closing message.

Coffman and Florence will be honored for their life-long commitments to preaching and service as this year’s Preacher Tribute honorees during the noon luncheon in the Hilton Room.

The presentations are free and open to the public, but advance reservations must be made in order to attend the luncheon. For more information call 325-674-3750 or visit


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