Bearings is a publication of The BTS Center, a think-tank supporting 21st century ministry leadership based in Portland, ME. The magazine shares insights from 21st century ministers -- very broadly construed -- from across the United States, across Christian denominations, and sometimes outside the Christian tradition. Each monthly issue of Bearings includes features on key issues and interests in ministry today, commentary from 21st century ministry thought leaders on life at the intersection of church and world, and inspiration from poets, short-fiction writers, musicians, visual artists, and other creative types. Our contributors include folks in various aspects of congregational ministry, social justice ministers, community organizers, articulate academics, artists, writers, and others with fresh perspectives on ministry today.

We are particularly interested in amplifying the voices of people in ministry leadership whose perspectives are not as often heard by the broader public--people in small church or rural ministry settings, people ministering from and on the margins, people experimenting with new forms of ministry. But we also honor and call upon the wisdom of experienced, adaptive leaders in ministry. Together, we're all getting our bearings in a diverse and dynamic religious and spiritual landscape.


Photo: Jordan Madrid, "Notepad" (March 12, 2018). Via Unsplash. Cc 2.0 license.

Editorial Team

Elizabeth Drescher

Elizabeth Drescher is the Bearings editor and Consulting Scholar for The BTS Center, She has been with the magazine since it launched four years ago, and has contributed a number of articles for Bearings. You can find her on Twitter @edrescherphd.
When she's not focused on Bearings, Elizabeth teaches in the undergraduate program in religious studies and the graduate program in pastoral ministry at Santa Clara University (CA), where she directs the Living Religion Collaborative. There, through a partnership with The BTS Center, Elizabeth has gathered a team of bright, engaging students to support the publication of the magazine.

Casey Xuerub

Technical Consultant

Casey Xuereb has helped us out as digital media consultant for Bearings, assisting in website maintenance and graphic design. At Santa Clara University she is studying web design engineering. Casey has previous experience working at a consulting firm doing web development and design. Additionally, she works in music ministry at Santa Clara University. You can find Casey on LinkedIn