Episode 50

Why Pastors Need to Play, with Casey Sigmon

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About this Episode

In this episode, Rev. Dr. Casey Sigmon, Professor of Preaching and Worship at St. Paul School of Theology, discusses the importance of play and imagination in combating burnout and enhancing preaching. She shares her background in film and theater and how it influenced her approach to worship. Casey also introduces the Pause/Play Center for Clergy Renewal, which focuses on providing rest and healing for pastors. The conversation highlights the power of well-preached sermons and the need for pastors to prioritize their own well-being, the importance of taking a leap of faith in preaching, and the connection between imagination and play. The conversation explores the resistance to play and the counter-cultural nature of play. Casey shares her favorite games, Killer Bunnies and Cards Against Humanity, and discusses shows that are not good until they're suddenly good.


  • Burnout is common among those in caring roles, and play can be a transformative tool to combat it.
  • Imagination is a crucial aspect of preaching and worship, allowing for creativity and connection with the audience.
  • The Pause/Play Center for Clergy Renewal provides a space for pastors to rest, heal, and develop new habits for preaching and pastoral care.
  • Well-preached sermons that engage the imagination and connect with the human condition have a greater impact on listeners.


00:00 Introduction: Burnout and the Power of Play
03:14 Special Episode Milestones
06:43 Guest Introduction: Casey Sigman
08:03 Casey's Background and Journey
13:14 Influence of Film and Music Videos
21:39 The Creation of the Paws Play Center
25:06 The Importance of Imagination
27:31 The Impact of Well-Preached Sermons
29:25 The Importance of Taking a Leap of Faith in Preaching
33:04 The Connection Between Imagination and Play
37:25 The Pause Play Center and Its Offerings
44:32 Resistance to Play and the Counter-Cultural Nature of Play
49:07 Why People Are Unaware of Their Need for Play
53:02 Favorite Games: Killer Bunnies and Cards Against Humanity
56:03 Shows That Are Not Good Until They're Good
57:45 How to Connect with Casey and the Pause Play Center

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