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Reviewed by Edith Wairimu for Readers' Favorite
The Pivotal Pastor: Ron Lewinski, Mission, and St. Mary of the Annunciation Parish by David Kennebeck is a documentation of one visionary pastor’s role in building a new church in Illinois filled with impactful reflections, encouraging discussions, and valuable insight. Following Lewinski’s new role as the parish’s pastor, parishioners were uncertain about their church’s future. He was known as an introvert who disliked conducting fundraising efforts and so the parishioners were skeptical that he could lead the construction of a new church building and expand its ministries. Through servant and collaborative leadership, Lewinski inspired the parishioners to follow the vision they had set for the church and participate in the years-long project. The work is a beautiful tribute to a man who led with relentless love, humility, and faith in God and a parish’s incredible achievements.
I appreciated that the work includes practical lessons about leadership and faith. The discussions are in-depth and paint a compelling picture of teamwork and what a community with a clear vision and determination can achieve. While the story is about a specific church, there are many invaluable lessons that other pastors and churches can glean from it. With precision and skill, Kennebeck intricately organizes the steps involved in building the new church and adding new ministries, including the reasons for the decisions made throughout the project. It is enhanced by humor, clear color photographs, and engaging communication details involved during the planning, construction, and later stages. The Pivotal Pastor by David Kennebeck is a profound historical non-fiction work that covers a pastor’s vital role in building a church and inspiring faith in his church community.