Chris Yaw Interviews Quinn Caldwell: Most Churches Are Too Darn Nice!

Taken with permission from


He grew up in the pews of his denomination, now Pastor Quinn Caldwell is taking the helm at Plymouth Congregational Church in Syracuse, NY and is ready to make some noise.

Caldwell says many mainline denominations suffer from a sense of complacency, as if the highest calling of the Christian was quiet dignity. He is hoping to inspire people to reach out to others with the love of God.

Let this energetic voice of hope inspire you.


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Quinn Caldwell is a hopeful voice of energy in his 160 year old church, in this interview we hear about the source of his optimism.

Polarities Are Lessening

Quinn says one of the things he's most hopeful about is a more level denominational landscape - in which different flavors of Christianity are growing to complement, instead of denigrate, one another.

Too Nice?

Yep, Quinn says it's time churches drop the timidity of polite discourse and tap into the bravery of the Spirit to share the love of God with others.

Unapologetic Appreciation for Mystery

Caldwell says this is what young people are looking for, and the church of the future will provide: an authentic sense of humility that is not uncomfortable living with the questions.

About Quinn Caldwell

Quinn G. Caldwell is the pastor of Plymouth Congregational Church, UCC, in Syracuse, NY.  He is a member of the UCC Stillspeaking Writers' Group and an author for the Stillspeaking Daily Devotionals, published on the UCC website. ( He is a former associate minister at Old South Church in Boston and since January has led the Under-40 Writers Group for the UCC website's Feed Your Spirit section on the denomination's global reach.

Caldwell is the co-author of The Unofficial Handbook of the United Church of Christ, published last year. The UCC describes it: "The co-authors - two young UCC ministers who are lifelong "UCCers" - have written this useful resource for all UCCers, but particularly for millennials: confirmation-aged youth and teens. Readers will learn about, appreciate, and be proud of their denomination-while not taking themselves too seriously."

Books Quinn Recommends

Best American Science and Nature Writing 2012

Harry Potter - JK Rowling

Pilgrim's Progress - John Bunyan