Tag Archives: church growth

Jesus Didn’t Die to Perpetuate an Institution: The Mother of All Culture Shifts

By Jan Edmiston, DMin ’01 and 222nd General Assembly Co-moderator Candidate with T. Denise Anderson

Repeat after me:

It’s not – and never again will be – about getting new members.

On the heels of Mothers’ Day, I’ve been thinking about a couple of important and unimportant things:

An historic Mother Church is counting down to a terrible anniversary in forty days.

KFC’s biggest sales day is – not kidding about this – Mothers’ Day. Lots of moms got buckets of chicken for Mothers’ Day. Continue reading Jesus Didn’t Die to Perpetuate an Institution: The Mother of All Culture Shifts

Is Transformation Possible?

By Margaret J. Marcuson

I’ve been hearing a lot about “church transformation” lately: many church denominations have transformational initiatives, to help turn around declining congregations. There’s a lot of pressure on clergy leaders to produce results, especially numerical growth. The pressure exists elsewhere, too: a recent survey of CEO turnover by Booz Allen Hamilton found that in 1995 one in eight departing CEOs was forced from office, but by 2006, nearly one in three left involuntarily. (The Oregonian, June 11, 2007). Booz Allen suggests this is performance-related turnover, as corporate boards want to see results in company sales and stock prices. Continue reading Is Transformation Possible?

For the Bookshelf: The Gift of the Shiksa

By Margaret J. Marcuson

Let me commend to you the latest of Edwin Friedman’s writings to be reissued by Church Publishing, The Myth of the Shiksa. The book includes a number of other essays beyond the title one, including, “An Interview with the First Family Counselor,” “Secrets and Systems,” and “Metaphors of Salvation,” and a fascinating foreword by Friedman’s daughter, Shira Friedman Bogart, “Growing up Friedman.”

Many of the chapters were published as articles during Friedman’s lifetime, but they have not been collected in book form before. They show Friedman’s characteristic wit, boldness, and ability to see things at a tangent. Continue reading For the Bookshelf: The Gift of the Shiksa

Seven Critical Factors in Bringing About Change

By Israel Galindo, Associate Dean for Lifelong Learning

Bringing about organizational change isn’t rocket science, but it’s not easy either. Those who step into a leadership position that requires engaging in institutional and organizational development in effect and by default will need to bring about changes on several levels: administrative, cultural, organizational, relational, and in processes and structures. In other words, institutional development is systemic. It requires addressing change in everything all together at the same time. Continue reading Seven Critical Factors in Bringing About Change

For the Bookshelf: The Apathetic and Bored Church Member

By Israel Galindo, Associate Dean for Lifelong Learning

Just about every year one of our doctoral students approaches me wanting to do a study on why church members leave their congregation. About half the time the motivation behind the study is soon apparent: anxiety from church leaders (the deacons) or anxiety from the pastor. My usual response is to encourage the student toward more interesting research questions and a more worthwhile study. My comment to them is, “People leave the church for 101 reasons. Fifty of them are bad ones and fifty-one are legitimate. In the end, it is their decision to make.” Continue reading For the Bookshelf: The Apathetic and Bored Church Member