Our fascination with superheroes has never been greater! The movies are breaking box office records and their merchandise is everywhere.

According to Pastor Dan Stanford, our obsession with them might be keeping us from reaching our full potential in life. He shares why we might need to redefine heroism.

“I think it’s important to look at the people that would often be overlooked when it comes to the news media. When I started my church I was told my ministry would be to those ten years older and ten years younger. So I expected a young looking church.”

He shared how an older couple in his church helped to redefine these expectations and his idea of what makes a hero.

“But the first people I baptized were in their seventy’s. Dave and Barb were amazing. They came in early to help set up chairs. Barb made fresh chocolate chip cookies every week – not raisin cookies! Chocolate chip cookies! We had kids lined up at the door just waiting for her to come, and some adults too! And they wouldn’t call themselves heroes. They never wore a cape. They didn’t have a catchphrase, but they made a seismic shift in our congregation just by doing the little things.”

It was a difference so profound it changed the path Dan took forward in his life.

“In fact, when I went for my master’s degree I focused on multi-generational ministry because of how those two redefined to me the older generation and what church should look like.”

“Going into it, all my professors had told me to expect my ministry to be ten years older to ten years younger. They’re going to look very much like yourself. But then I would read the book of Acts, and I would say no! Church is supposed to be a family, and in a family there should be three or four generations represented. And Dave and Barb, ordinary people, helped influence  that in my life and in my church’s life.”


Dan Stanford is the senior pastor of The Well Church in Kenosha, Wisconsin. His new book is called Losing the Cape: The Power of Ordinary in a World of Superheroes.

On the Road with Dan Stanford

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