A few of my nominations for most effective English-language preachers:
Rev. Julia Seymour (ELCA, president of RGBP); Rev. Denise Anderson (co-moderator of the PCUSA); Rev. Cindi Knox (UCC); Rev. Dr. Wil Gafney (Episcopalian, Hebrew scholar); Rev. Marci Glass (PCUSA); Rev. Julie Craig (PCUSA)

You may have seen that yesterday, Baylor announced a new list of the 12 “most effective” preachers in the English speaking world.

You may also have seen that the list included just one woman, and she is indeed amazing but also is no longer a regular preacher. And just three people of colour…who are, again, awesome, but surely there are far more Black, AAPI, Indigenous, Latinx, and other non-white preachers who deserve a spot on the list?

I mean…one person named on the list has been dead for nine months.
Granted, if he’s still preaching from the grave that is actually pretty impressive. But still.

Many of us have been wondering just how this list was compiled, and what the criteria for determining a preacher’s “effectiveness” are. It seems that the list was made from nominations sent in by a community of homileticians, and then narrowed down by a committee, focusing on the ones who got the most repeat nominations from the two homiletics societies that were surveyed.

Well….for thirteen years, RevGalBlogPals has been a community of preachers, pastors, chaplains, lay leaders, and friends. We have a wide range of denominations, views, styles, and church settings. And so on this first Thursday of the month, when normally we introduce new members of the blogging community, we would like YOU to introduce someone you think belongs on a list of Most Effective Preachers. Our homiletical community is larger than that polled for the Baylor list, and more diverse, and we know there are some kick-a$$ preachers among us. Who do you think needs to be known as an effective preacher of the gospel in the 21st century English-speaking world? And what makes them effective?

Over the years I have had the privilege of hearing many members of RevGals preach, in a variety of contexts. These women, and our BlogPals who might be men, are incredible conveyers of good news. And week in, week out, they are making a difference in the lives of people, and communities, around the world. Let’s get them some of the recognition they deserve!

We’ll be making a list, so leave your nominations, and your criteria for “effective preaching” in the comments!


Teri Peterson is a minister in the Church of Scotland, a nearly-original RevGal, a cat-mom, and a stickler about language—which is why lists that never define “effective preacher” drive her a little bit batty.

RevGalBlogPals encourages you to share our blog posts via email or social media. We do not grant permission to cut-and-paste prayers and articles without a link back. For permission to use material in paper publications, please email revgalblogpals at gmail dot com.

9 thoughts on “Meet-n-Greet: Effective Preachers Edition

  1. Hi! Nevertheless She Preached is also compiling a list of great preachers. Let me know if you want to collaborate! We will probably publish our list this afternoon or tomorrow. There can totally be more than one list, but we could also join forces.


  2. Marci Glass
    Shannon Kershner
    Denise Anderson
    Anna Straight
    Shawna Bowman
    Flo Watkins-Barbee
    Mary Ann McKibben Dana
    Megan Cochran
    Katherine Johnson
    Ashley-Anne Masters
    Michelle Thomas-Bush
    (this list has no end .)
    Carol McDonald
    Yena Hwang
    Amantha Barbee
    Jennifer Burns Lewis
    Laura Cunningham
    Lisa Lopez
    JC Cadwallader
    Maggie Henderson

    Liked by 1 person

  3. To Jan’s list, I’d add Jan Edmiston. She preached at my church several weeks ago and the conversation since has been fantastic. There have been more comments, emails, and texts than I can count- all of them referencing the sermon but focused on what is bigger, discipleship and what makes us a community of faith.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Grace Imathiu and Nadia Bolz Weber were my two favorite preachers from the one Festival of Homiletics I attended a few years ago. As has already been suggested, I think an effective preacher is one who pushes us to think about ourselves, our world, and God in new ways.


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