Excerpt 2

"For congregations that are not growing, there are two choices: 1) The congregation can redefine the vision to match the performance. This is like  the child who shot arrows at the wooden fence then drew a bulls-eye  around each one where it landed. Sadly, this dumbing-down response to  doldrums and decline is widespread. Empty churches rent their facilities  to other groups and call them "ministry partnerships." Pastors count new  activities instead of new disciples. But there is a better alternative. 2) The  congregation can begin the journey, in truth and love, toward accountable  leadership. And a clear understanding of accountable leadership is half  the journey. 

The other half is implementing an honest yet grace-based  plan that sets a pastor up for success, and then waiting to see if success is  forthcoming. The grace aspect allows ample time; provides ample support;   and, when necessary, offers ample help for transition to another job  if the pastor cannot lead the congregation to fulfill its mission. "What?"  some might say, If the pastor can't lead, then we need a new pastor? Isn't  that a little harsh?" Not if you treat people with dignity (e.g., generosity  with time and money). But each congregation has to make its own decision:   Is the purpose of our ministry to provide secure jobs for our staff?  Or is the purpose to accomplish our share of the Great Commission?


Dan said...

Seems the author is saying that good leadership in a church always results in numerical growth. While that is often true, is it always true? How would you decide if the reason the church wasn't growing numerically was the leadership of the pastor or the community and culture the church was around?