Addressing God: How Preachers Encourage Vibrant Prayer

Jul 23, 2018 - Jul 27, 2018 | 8:45 am - 1:00 pm

Calvin Seminary, Grand Rapids MI

Since prayer is the warm blood of a Christian life, preachers need to proclaim its joys and face its challenges.  This seminar will examine prayer – praise, thanksgiving, confession, lament, petition (including intercession)–through selected readings and discussion.  The goal is to revive good preaching about the most basic of Christian spiritual practices.

The seminar will ponder topics and questions such as:

— How does a pastor’s public praying shape the practice of prayer for those who listen in and pray along?

— How do sermons–both individual sermons but also the longer arc of any given pastor’s preaching–nourish the kind of relationship with God that is the bedrock for a vibrant prayer life?

— Are there practices of prayer–or ways of talking about prayer inside sermons–that may hinder the fostering of a robust prayer life and if so, how might preachers avoid such pitfalls?

Prayer has been described as “the most important part” of the larger gratitude believers owe toward and express to God.  At the end of the day, we want sermons and public prayers that encourage the people of God to be like the believers in the early church who, we are told in Acts 2 “devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.”

Through the sharing of sample prayers from participants, the savoring of classic prayers of the tradition, and through good conversations in the seminar, we will all sharpen one another in the matter of offering prayers to our great God and encouraging our congregations to join in as well!


Cornelius Plantinga, Jr., Calvin Theological Seminary President Emeritus, Senior Research Fellow, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship

Scott Hoezee, Calvin Theological Seminary Professor of Preaching, Director of the Center for Excellence in Preaching.

Funds provided by the Center for Excellence in Preaching (CEP) at Calvin Theological Seminary

Daily schedule and housing information:

On each of the five days, our seminar begins promptly at 8:45am with Morning Prayers and concludes at noon. Afternoons are free. Group dinners are planned for two evenings.  Lodging will be provided for the pastor and a spouse (no room for children) at the Prince Conference Center on the Calvin College campus, beginning Sunday July 22. Meals will include breakfast and lunch each day, Monday-Friday.

Application information:

Persons involved full-time in church ministries and those who prepare such persons for ministry are welcome to apply. Thanks to generous underwriting by the CEP, the cost for coming to this week-long event will be very modest. The church of each participant accepted into the seminar will be asked to pay a $150 registration fee for its pastor, who will also receive a stipend from the CEP to help off set travel costs.


  • Submit a Curriculum Vitae listing your education, work history, current position, etc.
  • Submit a short essay of approximately 500 words indicating what interests you about this seminar
  • Submit contact information (address, phone, fax, email) so that we can get back in touch with you.

Please send all application material to

Rev. Scott Hoezee (preferred) OR

Calvin Theological Seminary

3233 Burton Street SE

Grand Rapids, MI 49546


All applications must be submitted by March 15, 2018. Seminar participants will be notified by April 1, 2018. REGISTRATION IS CLOSED FOR THIS SEMINAR.


Reaching and Preaching for Peace

Nov 11, 2018 - Nov 13, 2018 | 12:00 am

Yorkminster Park Baptist Church, Toronto Ontario

Registration information is available at the Lester Randall Preaching Fellowship website:

The lowest registration price ends on July 31.

Speakers include Patricia Dutcher-Walls, Terry LeBlanc, Susan Sparks and Rowan Williams.