MULTIPLICATION & Instead of planting an independent new church, what about planting a new venue instead? Pros & cons considered.

by Bob Whitesel D.Min., Ph.D., 2/19/17.

A student once asked, “I am picturing a situation where a large church wants to plant an (independent) daughter church because they have a growing sub-congregation in the church that is mostly Hispanic, or Gen Y.  Is that a better way to help them, by launching them as an independent church plant?  Or can we help them better by offering to share the church with them as a venue or sub-congregation in the mother church?”

I replied …

What we often do when we launch a typical church “plant” is to create an “external” sub-congregation.  And, this is okay. But, I think it is usually not the best way to proceed.  Rather, the “internal planting” of a sub-congregation (fostering the growth of a sub-congregation that remains part of the church) is a better strategy.

This is because external plants have the following PLUSES (strengths) and NEGATIVES (weaknesses):

Short/long-term growth?

Pluses: External plants (in my consulting practice) grow quicker than Internal Plants (developing a sub-congregation and a venue), because they are homogeneous (i.e. largely attracting one culture).

Negatives: External plants (in my consulting practice) die quicker. They are smaller and often don’t reach critical mass for long-term sustainability.

Leadership?

Pluses: External plants have experienced leadership, because the leader has been trained in the mother church.

Negatives: External plants often lack good accountability and thus succumb to leadership/ethical weaknesses.

Attraction?

Pluses: External plants attract people who do not have a church home and/or who are dissatisfied with the church they attend.

Negatives: External plants often attract disgruntled people:

  1. Who don’t like the church they attend
  2. And/ or who do not want to rub shoulders with another culture (generational, ethnic, affinity, etc.). Thus, reconciliation does not take place.

More churches?

Pluses: External plants create more churches, though they may be smaller and not healthy for many years.

Negatives: External plants often kill existing churches, when the people who are attracted to the external plant leave the mother church, and other churches, weakening the churches they left.  This is the main reason pastors of established churches don’t like external plants, it cannibalizes the people they need to survive.

Diversity?

Pluses: External plants cater to a specific cultural market.  This creates a like-minded community that grows because of the things it holds in common.

Negatives: External plants don’t promote inter-cultural understanding.  This would be like the second-generation Koreans wanting their own church. The first-generation Koreans would feel abandoned and disconnected. And the externally planted 2nd-gen congregation might develop distain (due to distance) for the 1st-gen culture.

This illustration highlights the differences between first and second generational cultures.  But it happens in even a more damaging fashion between ethnic cultures.

The result of a good work, like church planting, can be that the cultures are distance organizationally and physically from one another by the planting of a separate congregation.

But it often makes the mother church feel good, because it can say, “We planted another church.” But in reality they often push them away because of their differences.  This creates distance between them and us. In my consulting work, no matter how much churches protest they … “Will stay connected to our daughter church,” they never stay as close as they would if they were sharing the church as fellow sub-congregations.

Thus, if a church is really committed to reconciliation and multi-culturalism (as I am) then Internal Planting is the better choice. Thus, with Internal Planting the church becomes in a community the main avenue for building multi-cultural understanding and tolerance, e.g. unity building and changing biases.

A name for this type of church is The Multicultural Alliance Model.

See all five models here: MULTICULTURAL CHURCHES & 5 Models: A New Paradigm Evaluated and Differentiated #AICR #AcademyForInterculturalChurchResearch

STUDENT SUCCESS & How to Find Scholarly Articles if You Are a @WesleySeminary Student #OCLS

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: Sometimes my students have difficulty locating scholarly journal articles. This is because not all scholarly articles have yet to be catalogued by search engines such as Google. However, if you are a Wesley Seminary student we have provided you a quick and easy way to access almost every scholarly journal that has been published. This service is called Off-campus Library Services (OCLS). Here is how they explain the process for downloading (free to Wesley Seminary students) the following article:

Hagley, S.J. (2008, September 1). [Review of the book Organizational change: Theory and practice, by W.W. Burke]. Journal of Religious Leadership 7, no. 2 125-128. 3 pp.

Begin forwarded message:
Date: February 15, 2017 at 7:52:01 PM EST
To: “Whitesel, Bob” <Bob.Whitesel@indwes.edu>

Bob,
Thank you for contacting OCLS. Due to Federal Copyright Law restrictions, we are not able to provide a copy of any article to you for you to distribute to your students. They will need to individually contact us for any articles they need.

However, this particular article is available through our site.

You/they will need to start on the OCLS homepage, www2.indwes.edu/ocls, and click on “Journal Titles” from the “Key Links” section.

In the search box, type in the name of the journal, which is Journal of Religious Leadership, and click on “Search.”

You/they will see that there is only one database through which we have access to this journal: ATLA Religion Database with ATLASerials. Click on the link for that database.

Once you’ve clicked on the database link, you/they will be taken to a new screen. Select “+2008” from the list of years under the “All Issues” section on the far right.

Then select “Volume 7 Issue 2 – Fall 2008.” Scroll down the list of articles from that issue and the one you/they need is number 8. Click on “PDF Full Text” to read the article.

If you or your students have any questions, please let us know. Thank you and have a wonderful evening!

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CHANGE THEORY & Toward a Holistic, Postmodernal Theory of Change by @BobWhitesel

Excerpted from The Journal of the American Society for Church Growth (JASCG), Fall 2008, editor Gary McIntosh, DMin, PhD., La Mirada, CA: Biola University.

Toward a Holistic and Postmodernal Theory of Change: The Four-forces Model of Change As Reflected in Church Growth Movement Literature

by Bob Whitesel, D. Min.

Introduction

Change that permits and even promotes efficacious evangelism would seem to be at the heart of the strategic intentions of the Church Growth Movement. However, in spite of its theoretical centrality, a review of Church Growth Movement literature reveals that change, while persistent in the literature, is far from central and/or holistically addressed. And though the complex interplay of multiple generative mechanisms that drive and channel change is acknowledged in Church Growth literature, due to a narrow focus in many Church Growth tomes, what organization theorist Mary Jo Hatch describes as a more holistic and efficacious “collage” approach to change (Hatch 1997:54) is missing.

The purpose of this present study is to form a background from Church Growth Movement literature against which might emerge a contemporary epistemology and model for theories of change and changing. And, since the cultural predilections of postmodernity heavily influence future strategizing, postmodern theoretical understandings will be sought.

As such, a holistic collage approach becomes requisite. Hatch’s analysis of postmodern organization theories leads her to believe they rely heavily upon a collage approach. She describes a collage as “an art form in which objects and pieces of objects (often including reproductions of other works of art…) are arranged together to form something new – an art object in its own right. When you use collage as a metaphor for organization theory you are recognized the value of holding multiple perspectives and using parts of theories to form a new work… they (postmodern leaders) use bits of old theories along with the knowledge and experience they have collected in their lifetimes to create a new theory worthy of use in particular circumstances” (ibid.).

41tso1esgl-_sy344_bo1204203200_            This author has elsewhere described his ethnographic study of 12 postmodernal ecclesial organizations, and how this leadership collage is evident in many, if not most, of their scenarios (Whitesel 2006:124-134). Therefore, for the present discussion it will be assumed that healthy and effective emerging postmodernal congregations are utilizing holistic and multifaceted approaches to managing change.

But this elicits the question, is this collage approach, born out of innovative reactions to indigenous cultures, reflected in church Growth literature? And if so, to what degree? If it is, then in Church Growth Movement literature there lies helpful and even strategic understandings that can help postmodernal theorists and/or ecclesial leaders manage change. If it is not found, then additional research and publication is required on this important topic. Such questions, that can elicit grounded theory research, are what this article seeks to uncover and evaluate

Four Forces Approach To Change

Theories of Change and Theories of Changing

We begin with a brief review of pertinent aspects of organization theory of change and changing. Within organization theory there is an innovative and influential perspective that change arises and is controlled by one or more generative mechanisms or forces. These mechanisms control the development and evolution of change processes, and as such require varying mechanisms and strategies for their management.

A brief discussion of organization theory’s delineations between theories of change and theories of changing (Bennis 1996) will assist the reader in comprehending the nuances of this author’s analysis. Theories of change, are those theoretical and practical constructs that explain how organizations change and factors that bring about that change. Theories of changing deal with how change can be manipulated and managed to elicit ultimate organizational performance.

The author’s current research is in grounded theory development that can elicit theories of change in postmodernal ecclesial organizations. As such, the exploration of the mechanics and generative mechanisms of change will dominate this discussion. In addition, since the purpose of this study is to encourage my graduate students at Indiana Wesleyan University to develop theories of changing (i.e. how change can be managed), I will also discuss (though because of space constraints to a lesser degree) how Church Growth Movement literature employs prescriptive mechanisms to elicit the management of changing.

A Collage of Four Forces

Organization change theorists Van de Ven and Poole have posited an influential model for change that considers the interplay of four types of change forces, with resultant yet varying prescriptive mechanisms for controlling and managing each (Van de Ven and Poole 1995). These four types or “forces” involve different generative mechanisms or motors, proceed through different process models and are managed by varying prescriptive strategies.

Though some change may involve just one of these typologies, many more change processes will involve two or more of these underlying forces (Van de Ven and Poole 1995:8). Therefore, the key for developing theories of ecclesial changing among future researchers and students, will be to understand and identify the interplay of these change forces, with a resultant indigenous collage from a grounded theory of change.

To begin our quest, an understanding of the four forces involved in this interplay will be required.

The Life Cycle Model

Theories of Change. This model views change as progressing through a lock-step process “that is prescribed and regulated by an institutional, natural, or logical program prefigured at the beginning of the cycle” (Van de Ven and Poole 1995:7). In the ecclesial realm this might be a church that was founded to reach a certain generational, social and/or ethic culture. The manner in which this organization develops has been embedded into the organization’s DNA at conception and/or renewal. Change is thus an outgrowth of the organizational life-cycle and its inauguration. Change will usually not be introduced from the outside as much as it will emerge from a developing cycle, that has been apriori programmed into the organization’s inception. In this view, a church is not GCRscannedcover.jpgin the empiricist metaphor tabula rasa, but rather prescribed and regulated by apriori forces that elicit certain responses.

Read more by downloading the article here: article-whitesel-gcrn-toward-a-holistic-and-postmodernal-theory-of-change-in-cg-literature-gcrn

To subscribe and/or receive more information about The Great Commission Research Journal (the new name) click here: http://journals.biola.edu/gcr/

#DMin

TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERSHIP & A Definition that contrasts it w/ Transactional Leadership

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: If you want to know the definition of transformational leadership, Northouse’s definition is where you must start. In Northouse;s classic text book on leadership theory he concisely, yet fully defines transformational leadership and and differentiates it from the more common (and less effective) transactional leadership method.

Peter G. Northouse, Leadership: Theory and Practice, 7th ed. (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2015) p. 162.

BOOK EXCERPT Definition of Transformational Leadership Northouse 7th ed p. 162.jpg

To read more  buy the book or look inside selected sections at … https://books.google.com/books?id=TuyeBgAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=northouse+leadership+theory+and+practice+7th+edition&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwilvM-JpN7RAhVM52MKHT88DZYQ6AEIGjAA#v=onepage&q&f=false

#TransformationalLeadershipConference

2ADF89DE-7E9D-4390-8A2D-A5A8A7A1CFB4

speaking hashtags: #TransformationalLeadershipConference2018

PRIVILEGE & Exercises to Understand Privilege (Privilege Walk)

by Barbara Lesch McCaffry, American Multi-Cultural Studies, Hutchins School of Liberal Studies, and Women’s and Gender Studies, Sonoma State University, Rohnert Park, California. Retrieved from http://userpages.umbc.edu/~korenman/wmst/privilege1.html

Unity and Privilege Exercise

Have students stand in a straight line (quite close together).

  • Request they hold hands with the person on either side of them for as long as possible and refrain from speaking during the exercise.
  • Or they can stand in a circle without holding hands.

·      Put a chair at some distance in front of the line or in the center of the circle (not as effective). At the end of the questions the facilitator announces that the winner is the first one to sit on the chair.·      Tell participants in advance that is any question makes them feel uncomfortable they should just ignore the question, moving neither forward nor backward.·      An optional exercise is to ask the participants to add their own questions after all the questions have been asked. One research said, “I recall one instance in which some of the immigrant students had questions that US born participants did not / could not anticipate…etc.”

—-

 

If your ancestors were forced to come to the USA, not by choice, take one step back.

 

If your primary ethnic identity is American, take one step forward.

 

If you were ever called names because of your race, class, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation, take one step back.

 

If there were people of color who worked in your household as servants, gardeners, etc., take one step forward.

 

If your parents were professional, doctors, lawyers, etc., take one step forward.

 

If you were raised in an area where there was prostitution, drug activity, etc. take one step back.

 

If you ever tried to change you appearance, mannerisms, or behavior to avoid being judged or ridiculed, take one step back.

 

If you studied the culture of your ancestors in elementary school, take one step forward.

 

If you went to a school speaking a language other than English, take one step back.

 

If there were more than 50 books in your house when you grew up, take one step forward.

 

If you ever had to skip a meal or were hungry because there was not enough money to buy food when you were growing up, take one step back.

 

If you were brought to art galleries or plays by your parents, take one step forward.

 

If one of your parents were unemployed or laid off, not by choice, take one step back.

 

If you attended a private school or summer camp, take one step forward.

 

If your family ever had to move because they could not afford the rent, take one step back.

 

If you were told that you were beautiful, smart, and capable by your parents, take one step forward.

 

If you were ever discouraged from academic or jobs because of race, class, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation, take one step back.

 

If you were ever encouraged to attend a college by your parents, take one step forward.

 

If prior to age 18, you took a vacation out of the country, take one step forward.

 

If one of your parents did not complete high school, take one step back.

 

If your family owned your own house, take one step forward.

 

If you saw members of your race, ethnic group, gender, or sexual orientation were portrayed on television in degrading roles, take one step back.

 

If you were ever offered a good job because of your association with a friend or family member, take one step forward.

 

If you were ever denied employment because of your race, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation, take one step back.

 

If you were ever paid less, treated less fairly because of your race, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation, take one step back.

 

If you were ever accused of cheating or lying because of your race, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation, take one step back.

 

If you ever inherited money or property, take a step forward.

 

If you had to rely primarily on public transportation, take one step back.

 

If you were ever stopped or questioned by the police because of your race, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation, take one step back.

 

If you were ever afraid of violence because of your race, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation, take one step back.

 

If you were generally able to avoid places that were dangerous, take one step forward.

 

If you ever felt uncomfortable about a joke related to your race, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation, take one step back.

 

If you were ever a victim of violence related to your race, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation, take one step back.

 

If your parents did not grow up in the United States, take one step back.

 

If your parents told you that you could be anything you wanted to be, take one step forward.

 

Debrief: Ask participants to remain where they are to look at their position in the room or space in relation to the positions of the other participants. Ask participants to pick someone from an opposite position with which to process the exercise. If a circle was used in lieu of a line, the privileged with be in the middle and the “others” will be on the outside. White males (almost always near the front) will find it very easy to sit on the chair at the end. One researcher noted, “for the Black males who are almost always way at the back–this is impossible–although I once had a Black male who really put on some speed to try and get there. It is an excellent reminder of the effect of unearned privilege.”

Questions: What are your thoughts and feelings about this exercise? Were you surprised? Why? If time permits or if relevant: Would your placement have been different if the exercise included questions about disability or religion? How could affirmative action impact these issues? Take about 10 minutes for the pairs to process and then have them report back to the group as a whole.

 

TRUMP/CLINTON & Chaos or Community? MLK Jr. Book Has Insight on Where We Should Go From Here

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel. After a divisive election, people are wondering what to do. The best insights may come from Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s last book which followed very divisive elections in America. He urged Americans to distinguish between three types of biblical “loves” (eros, philia and agape), suggesting only with agape love (loving the unlovely) can systemic change be brought that will change the situation of the increasingly poor segment of the US population. Here’s an overview of his last and perhaps most relevant book for 2017.

WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE: CHAOS OR COMMUNITY?

Introducer: Vincent Harding

King believed that the next phase in the movement would bring its own challenges, as African Americans continued to make demands for better jobs, higher wages, decent housing, an education equal to that of whites, and a guarantee that the rights won in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 would be enforced by the federal government. He warned that ‘‘The persistence of racism in depth and the dawning awareness that Negro demands will necessitate structural changes in society have generated a new phase of white resistance in North and South.’’

King assesses the rise of black nationalism and the increasing use of the slogan ‘‘Black Power’’ in the movement. While he praised the slogan, he also recognized that its implied rejection of interracial coalitions and call for retaliatory violence ‘‘prevent it from having the substance and program to become the basic strategy for the civil rights movement in the days ahead.’’ Condemning the advocacy of black separatism, King maintained that there would be no genuine progress for African Americans ‘‘unless the whole of American society takes a new turn toward greater economic justice.’’ Despite King’s impatience with Black Power proponents, he ends the book on an optimistic note, calling for continued faith in the movement.

King maintained that there would be no genuine progress for African Americans ‘‘unless the whole of American society takes a new turn toward greater economic justice.’’

Reviews:

“Martin Luther King, Jr., was one of the greatest organic intellectuals in American history. His unique ability to connect the life of the mind to the struggle for freedom is legendary, and in this book—his last grand expression of his vision—he put forward his most prophetic challenge to powers that be and his most progressive program for the wretched of the earth.” —Cornel West

Excerpt, From Vincent Harding’s Introduction:

… From this position of radical engagement it would have been relatively easy for King, if he chose, to confine his published writing to telling the powerful stories of the experiences he shared almost daily with the magnificent band of women, men, and children who worked in the black-led Southern freedom movement, recounting how they struggled to transform themselves, their communities, this nation, and our world. Instead, going beyond the stories, King insisted on constantly raising and reflecting on the basic questions he posed in the first chapter of this work—“Where Are We?” and in the overall title of the book itself, Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?

…Building on all of the deep resources of empathy and compassion that seemed so richly and naturally a part of his life, King appeared determined not only to pay attention but to insist that his organization and his nation focus themselves and their resources on dozens of poor, exploited black communities— and especially their desperate young men, whose broken lives were crying out for new, humane possibilities in the midst of the wealthiest nation in the world. Speaking later at a staff retreat of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, King expressed a conviction that had long been a crucial part of what he saw when he paid attention to the nation’s poorest people. He said, “Something is wrong with the economic system of our nation. . . . Something is wrong with capitalism.” Always careful (perhaps too careful) to announce that he was not a Marxist in any sense of the word, King told the staff he believed “there must be a better distribution of wealth, and maybe America must move toward a democratic socialism. . . . ” This seemed a natural direction for someone whose ultimate societal goal was the achievement of a nonviolent “beloved community.” But a major part of the white American community and its mass media seemed only able to condemn “Negro violence” and to justify a “white backlash” against the continuing attempts of the freedom movement to move northward toward a more perfect union. (King wisely indentified the fashionable “backlash” as a continuing expression of an antidemocratic white racism that was as old as the nation itself.)

Meanwhile, even before Watts, King and the SCLC staff had begun to explore creative ways in which they could expand their effort to develop a just and beloved national community by establishing projects in northern black urban neighborhoods. (The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, or SNCC, the other major Southern movement organizing force, was involved in similar Northern explorations by the mid-1960s, but both organizations were hampered by severe financial difficulties.) Partly because of some earlier contacts with Chicago-based community organizers, King and SCLC decided to focus on that deeply segregated city as the center of their expansion into the anguish of the North. By the winter of 1966, SCLC staff members had begun organizing in Chicago. At that point King decided to try to spend at least three days a week actually living in one of the city’s poorest black communities, a west-side area named Lawndale. From that vantage point, working (sometimes uncomfortably) with their Chicago colleagues, King and SCLC decided to concentrate their attention on a continuing struggle against the segregated, deteriorating, and educationally dysfunctional schools; the often dilapidated housing; and the disheartening lack of job opportunities…

In the face of such hard facts, King insisted on pressing two other realities into the nation’s conscience. One was his continuing plea for “a coalition of Negroes and liberal whites that will work to make both major parties truly responsive to the needs of the poor.” At the same time he insisted that “we must not be oblivious to the fact that the larger economic problems confronting the Negro community will only be solved by federal programs involving billions of dollars…”

From Dr. King’s conclusion:

“We are now faced with the fact that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history there is such a thing as being too late. Procrastination is still the thief of time. Life often leaves us standing bare, naked and dejected with a lost opportunity . . . This may well be mankind’s last chance to choose between chaos or community.”

Read more at … http://www.thekinglegacy.org/books/where-do-we-go-here-chaos-or-community

See also The Role of Agape in the Ethics of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Pursuit of Justice by Jerry Ogoegbunem Nwonye, dissertation to the Faculty of Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, CA, 1/2009 available at https://books.google.com/books?id=_0b6NTQGcKUC&dq=Where+Do+We+Go+from+Here:+agape&source=gbs_navlinks_s

Hashtags:  #WesleySeminary #DMinTL

BIAS & Guarding your Eyes: The Impacts of Unconscious Bias in Multiethnic Churches

by Oneya Fennell Okuwobi, The Journal of the Academy for Intercultural Church Research, 10/27/16.

On September 19, 2016, millions watched a video showing that Terrence Crutcher was tased and then shot after his car stalled on the highway. He lay bleeding on the ground unattended and later died. Although much uproar resulted from this video, watching black men die is nothing new. On April 23, 1899, two thousand people watched as Sam Hose was brutally mutilated and burned at the stake. We view our modern spectacle of death through dash-cams and cell phone videos rather than at celebratory gatherings, but there is continuity between the two phenomena. Posted in the interest of transparency, videos of police-involved shootings show intimate views of last breaths that will have devastating impacts for modern race relations. As we watch these men die, we dehumanize them and deepen our unconscious biases.  In the context of multiethnic churches, these biases result in reification of racial hierarchies that threaten unity within the body.

To understand the possible consequences of these images of death, it is important to recognize that race is not an objective reality, but rather a created one. Race is used to organize social life in the United States by ranking various groups (Omi & Winnant, 1994). In this process, meaning and status are assigned to physical differences (e.g., skin color), not by natural distinctions but by specific action. For example, legal proceedings were used to determine now taken for granted definitions of race. Berkley law professor Ian Haney Lopez’s White by Law (1996) recounts suits brought by Mexican, Japanese, Chinese, and Syrian immigrants attempting to prove in court that they were white and therefore eligible for US citizenship prior to 1940. Various court cases were also used to assign blackness to those with any African ancestry, solidifying what is popularly known as the “one drop rule,” even as other countries developed more nuanced views of black and white.

The formation of racial differences can take forms much more gruesome than court proceedings. In the case of public post bellum lynchings, Fordham University sociologist Mattias Smångs (2016) has shown that these executions were critical “race making” events. These not uncommon occurrences were used to cement racial divisions at a time when freedoms granted after the Civil War could have threatened white superiority in society. The sentiment around lynching affirmed separation of whites and blacks into “us and them,” both politically through the strengthening of the southern Democratic party and legally through the advent of Jim Crow.

So what do lynchings a century ago have to do with our current state of race relations? Race was not created once and for all during slavery or during the time of legal segregation. Race has to be recreated in order for divisions and hierarchies that cast some as less than to continue generation after generation. Public displays of violence have effectively led to racial divisions in the past; the ways in which police-involved shootings of black men are portrayed today are recreating race via unconscious bias.

Unconscious biases are deeply held attitudes that affect decision making without an individual’s awareness (Banaji and Greenwald, 1994). These biases can be positive or negative. Importantly they have no relationship with the conscious attitudes or prejudices an individual holds. A person can consciously desire to treat all people equally, while in actuality treating persons differently by race, class, or gender due to implicit stereotypes.

A common bias is viewing Black men through the lens of criminality. University of Florida law professor Katheryn Russell-Brown (1999) coined the expression criminalblackman to express how myth meshed deviance and blackness into one. Even if you are too PC to actually cross the street at night when being approached by a black man, you probably consider it; this myth is to blame. This myth also makes boys carrying toys- like Tamir Rice and Tyre King- subject to the consequences of grown men. From the time of slavery, black men have been depicted as dangerous to justify violence against them (Alexander 2010). Each time a new video of a police-involved shooting is released, this process continues. If one is already stereotyped as a criminal, simply viewing him in an interaction with the police confirms that bias. Whether accused of a small offense such as selling loose cigarettes [Eric Garner] or a non-offense such as having car trouble [Corey Jones], the dead instantly bears the burden of culpability. This association recreates race by depicting black men as especially, and justifiably, policed.

Beyond the prejudices triggered through images of police interaction, further damage is done by the predictable response post shooting. News outlets and social media posts examine videos, criminal records, and eyewitness accounts, citing this evidence as police action is vilified or justified. The act of analyzing and arguing about the violent death of another image bearer dehumanizes the dead. A recent video has reimagined some images of police shootings with white victims instead of black to jarring effect. To the extent that it is acceptable to view a black victim and not a white one, race is recreated by making the death of one less tragic than the other. As our biases make black men less than human, it is small wonder that Blacks are nearly twice as likely to be killed by police when compared to Whites. Stereotypes of criminality and the process of dehumanization combine through the voyeuristic viewing of shooting videos, recreating racial hierarchies and maintaining a dangerous environment for black men.

Leaders and attenders of multiethnic churches need to be especially watchful of the impacts of bias within their churches. Multiethnic churches tend to handle race by subordinating racial identities to broader identity in Christ (Edwards, Christerson, and Emerson 2013). This enables churches to keep unity, but allows racial attitudes and inequalities already present in society to seep into church operations. Unexamined attitudes are not innocuous, on the contrary, unconscious bias actually has more predudicial effects on the behavior of those who view themselves as valuing all people equally than those who realize that they hold prejudices. (Gaertner, 1973). Not surprisingly, it is difficult to develop deep, reciprocal relationships where unconscious bias creates a barrier (Greenwald, Banaji, and Nosek 2015) To the extent that multiethnic churches are not discussing race, or the dangers of bias, these items remain beneath the surface, hindering the objective of unity…

Read more at … http://intercultural.church/index.php/2016/10/27/guarding-your-eyes-the-impacts-of-unconscious-bias-in-multiethnic-churches/

References:Alexander, Michelle. 2010. The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness. 1 edition. New York: The New Press.

Banaji, M. R., & Greenwald, A. G. 1994. “Implicit stereotyping and prejudice.” In M. P. Zanna & J. M. Olson (Eds.), The psychology of prejudice: The Ontario Symposium (Vol. 7, pp. 55-76). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

Dovidio, John F., Tamar Saguy, and Nurit Shnabel. 2009. “Cooperation and Conflict within Groups: Bridging Intragroup and Intergroup Processes.” Journal of Social Issues 65(2):429–49.

Edwards, Korie L., Brad Christerson, and Michael O. Emerson. 2013. “Race, Religious Organizations, and Integration.” Annual Review of Sociology 39.

Gaertner, S. L. 1973. “Helping behavior and racial discrimination among liberals and conservatives.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 25: 335–341.

Greenwald, A. G., Banaji, M. R., & Nosek, B. A. 2015. “Statistically small effects of the Implicit Association Test can have societally large effects.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 108(4): 553-561.

López, Ian Haney. 2006. White by Law 10th Anniversary Edition: The Legal Construction of Race. Revised and Updated: 10th Anniversary ed. edition. New York: NYU Press.

Omi, Michael and Howard Winant. 2014. Racial Formation in the United States. 3rd edition. New York: Routledge.

Russell-Brown, Katheryn. 1999. The Color of Crime: Racial Hoaxes, White Fear, Black Protectionism, Police Harassment, and Other Macroaggressions. New York: NYU Press.

Smångs, Mattias. 2016. “Doing Violence, Making Race: Southern Lynching and White Racial Group Formation.” American Journal of Sociology 121(5):1329–74.

 

The Academy for Intercultural Church Research, a network of researchers dedicated to analyzing and researching multicultural churches such as multiethnic churches, multi-generational churches, churches reaching out to multiple socioeconomic levels, etc. Below is their home page. Be sure to bookmark it and  check out their journal which features the latest research on congregations that are transitioning into healthy multicultural churches.

AICR Home page picture.jpg

SIZE & The Median Church in the US has 75 Regular Participants on Sunday Mornings #NationalCongregationsStudy #NCS

by the Hartford Institute for Church Research, retrieved from http://hirr.hartsem.edu/research/fastfacts/fast_facts.html#sizecong, 11/9/16.

What’s the size of U.S. churches?

A: The median church in the U.S. has 75 regular participants in worship on Sunday mornings, according to the National Congregations Study (NCS) http://www.soc.duke.edu/natcong/ . Notice that researchers measured the median church size — the point at which half the churches are smaller and half the churches are larger — rather than the average (186 attenders reported by the USCLS survey http://www.uscongregations.org/charact-cong.htm ), which is larger due to the influence of very large churches. But while the United States has a large number of very small churches, most people attend larger churches. The National Congregations Study estimated that the smaller churches draw only 11 percent of those who attend worship. Meanwhile, 50 percent of churchgoers attended the largest 10% of congregations (350 regular participants and up).
Want to know more? Check the websites for the National Congregations Study (NCS) at http://www.soc.duke.edu/natcong/ The US Congregational Life Survey (USCLS) website has statistics about congregations by religious traditions at http://www.uscongregations.org/ The Faith Communities Today national study of churches www.faithcommunitiestoday.org 2010 study also contains size and other congregational findings.

Read more at … http://hirr.hartsem.edu/research/fastfacts/fast_facts.html#sizecong

Approximate Distribution of U.S. Protestant and Other Christian Churches by size *based on NCS study
(excluding Catholic/Orthodox)

ATTENDANCE # OF CHURCHES WEEKLY WORSHIPERS PERCENT

7-99

177,000

  9 million 59%

100-499

105,000

25 million 35%

500-999

12,000

  9 million 4%

1,000-1,999

6,000

  8 million 2%

2,000-9,999

1,170

  4 million .4%

10,000-plus

40

  .7 million .01%

TOTALS

approx. 300,000

approx. 56 million 100%

 

DMIN & A 1 Min. Video Intro to the Wesley Seminary Doctor of Ministry in Transformational Leadership

 

#DMin animation cartoon Professor Whitesel

TRANSFORMATION & This Chart Reminds Us That People Value an Organization That Helps Change Lives

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: This pyramidal chart demonstrates that one of the highest needs for people today is to change their life for the better. This is exactly what Christ offers and the Church participates in this better than it entertains. I have argued tirelessly for a need-based church in lieu of an entertainment-based ecclesiology. So read this Harvard Business Review article for additional validation.

The Elements of Value

by Eric AlmquistJohn SeniorNicolas Bloch, Harvard Business Review, 9/16.

The amount and nature of value in a particular product or service always lie in the eye of the beholder, of course. Yet universal building blocks of value do exist, creating opportunities for companies to improve their performance in current markets or break into new ones. A rigorous model of consumer value allows a company to come up with new combinations of value that its products and services could deliver. The right combinations, our analysis shows, pay off in stronger customer loyalty, greater consumer willingness to try a particular brand, and sustained revenue growth.

We have identified 30 “elements of value”—fundamental attributes in their most essential and discrete forms. These elements fall into four categories: functional, emotional, life changing, and social impact. Some elements are more inwardly focused, primarily addressing consumers’ personal needs. For example, the life-changing element motivation is at the core of Fitbit’s exercise-tracking products. Others are outwardly focused, helping customers interact in or navigate the external world. The functional element organizes is central to The Container Store and Intuit’s TurboTax, because both help consumers deal with complexities in their world.

R1609C_ALMQUIST_VALUEPYRAMID

Read more at … https://hbr.org/2016/09/the-elements-of-value

PASTORAL TRANSITIONS & Dewey Smith’s personal story of his challenging pastoral transition

This popular session from the Church Central Turnaround 20/20 conference details Pastor Smith’s difficult journey of becoming the new pastor of a 137 year-old church, and the lessons he learned in the process. “I really had to humble myself like never before,” he says. “We can create climates that make church growth more conducive, but ultimately it’s God who adds the increase.”

Watch the video at … http://www.churchcentral.com/videos/dewey-smiths-personal-story-of-his-challenging-pastoral-transition/

 

HIERARCHIES & Why It Increases the Risk of Calamitous Decisions

by Gary Hamel, Harvard Business Review, 12/11.

… the typical management hierarchy increases the risk of large, calamitous decisions.

  • As decisions get bigger, the ranks of those able to challenge the decision maker get smaller.
    • Hubris, myopia, and naïveté can lead to bad judgment at any level,
    • but the danger is greatest when the decision maker’s power is, for all purposes, uncontestable.
  • Give someone monarchlike authority, and sooner or later there will be a royal screwup.

A related problem is that the most powerful managers are the ones furthest from frontline realities. All too often, decisions made on an Olympian peak prove to be unworkable on the ground.

Read more at … https://hbr.org/2011/12/first-lets-fire-all-the-managers

RURAL CHURCH & An Executive Summary of the Book: Transforming Church in Rural America

by Jeff Larson, pastor of Life Church, Aurora, IN; missional coach 2016.

For years the whole world moved with technology while I sat on the sidelines. Everyone I knew had a smartphone. I bought a blackberry once and it sat in my dresser drawer for about six months before I gave it to my nephew. I had no idea how those new gadgets worked. I’d rather hide my head in the sand than to take the time to learn how to use them. Finally, one day while shopping for a phone for my bride that I was talked into giving it another try by a salesman. Today, I have no idea what I would do without mine.

If a person understands how something works, they are more likely than not able to be successful. Shannon O’Dell understands how the rural church works, and that is why he is so successful. In his book, that I would wholeheartedly recommend with two thumbs straight up, Transforming Church in Rural America, O’Dell walks the reader through his journey from being a successful youth pastor in a mega church in Oklahoma to pastoring a small and dying church in South Lead Hill, Arkansas, population 93.

I first picked up this book because the rural church is something I am very interested in, but what hooked me to read it was that it was endorsed by names like Mark Beeson, Ed Young, and Craig Groeschel. I thought to myself, if these mega church pastors have read this book and recommend it, there has got to be something here. Boy was I right!

What I love about this book is that O’Dell starts at the very beginning and walks the reader, step by step, through his entire process of wrestling with God over the call to pastor this church, his first days in leadership, facing opposition, and seeing his church grow to unheard of measures. O’Dell often uses Scripture to help the reader understand the concept that it is God that grows the church and He allows His followers to be used in the process.

O’Dell conviction that “rural America is perhaps more churched and more unchurched than any place on earth” and ‘A great harvest for Christ is waiting in the heartland and rural communities of America[1]” makes the reader understand his dedication and passion for the church that resides in rural America. Many people believe that because it is not found in the center of a metropolitan area that it is irrelevant or unimportant and destined to shrivel up and die. O’Dell and Brand New Church are living proof to the contrary. The world wants us to believe that bigger and newer is always better, but O’Dell explains that this is not the way that God operates.

The work that O’Dell was called to was not easy. It took much effort and dedication to see God do what He had planned for Brand New Church. O’Dell said, “I have never met a rancher who expects his herd to grow and multiply without a lot of hard work and without a lot of strategic effort[2].” Even this quote screams rural. It is not a reference toward something that most city folks would understand, but anyone who lives in a rural community would get this right away. It is again written with the rural pastor in mind.

Throughout the book, O’Dell uses the word ‘VALUE’ as an acrostic to tell about Vision, Attitude, Leadership, Understanding, and Enduring Excellence in the rural church. All five of these elements are vitally important is seeing the rural church grow to all that God has called it to be. Each of the five have intricate V.A.L.U.E. in itself that aids the other to build upon. Helping the reader to see this from the inside of Brand New Church and how God used it in their ministry helps us to see it happening and how to implement it into ours as well.

There are multiple thoughts that O’Dell shares that were exceptionally meaningful. He said, “Listen, if you aren’t casting vision, the only ones who will want to serve with you are those who are interested in maintaining control of the status quo[3].” Later he said, “Since we believe that we stand under the authority of Scripture, then, man, let’s start acting that way.[4]” Then he said, “When a pastor is leading effectively, he has everything in the house in order.[5]

This book is worthwhile to anyone who serves in the church, whether it is a paid position or a volunteer position, and also regardless if your ministry is in a rural setting or even in a busy urban setting. The principles that O’Dell share are extremely important regardless of the location. I will keep this book and refer to it again and again.

[1] Page 18

[2] Page 54

[3] Page 104

[4] Page 130

[5] Page 135

DMIN & 1st @WesleySeminary cohort holding 2 fingers signifying completion of first 2 seminars of #DMin

First cohort of Doctor of Ministry of Wesley Seminary holding up two fingers to signify they have completed the first two seminars towards their doctoral degree. July 1, 2016 at our host organizations, #12Stone Church & #JohnMaxwellCenter, Atlanta, GA.

ORGANIZATIONAL BEHAVIOR & My Guide to How Org. Size Affects Organizational Behavior, Structures & Management

by Bob Whitesel D.Min., Ph.D., 6/29/16.

To lead an organization, you must first understand how the organization “behaves” and then begin to “manage” the “organizational behavior.”  Here are comments about church organizational size, behavior and management edited together here from my writings.

Organizational Behavior & Structure

To lead an organization you must begin by analyzing how the organization behaves.  It is like a child, you adjust your parenting as they grow and behave differently.  So, to lead a church effectively you must first step back and watch how the organization behaves.

The first step in doing so is to look at how the church is made up of many smaller groupings.  Some of these groupings are small groups (around 12 people, but they can get larger), clusters (groups of 20-75 with an extended family focus) and sub-congregations (group of 30-150, notice the overlap) that function as tribal group focusing (usually) around celebrations.

Three Organizational Structures in Most Churches

Small groups:

  • Size: around 12 people, but they can get larger
  • Focus: intimacy, accountability
  • Ministry: UP-IN-OUT (typically):
    • IN = strong
    • UP = moderate
    • OUT = weak

Cluster:

  • Size: groups of 20-75, usually a cluster of formal (or informal) small groups
  • Focus: an extended family feel of interreliance and task orientation.
  • Ministry: UP-IN-OUT (typically):
    • IN = moderate
    • UP = moderate
    • OUT = strong

Sub-congregations:

  • Size: group of 30-150, notice the overlap
  • Focus: function as a tribal group (Dunbar Group) often focusing around celebrations
  • Ministry: UP-IN-OUT (typically):
    • IN = low
    • UP = strong
    • OUT = moderate to strong

 

More Details About Small Groups, Clusters and Sub-congregations

Small Groups

See these articles on small groups: https://churchhealthwiki.wordpress.com/?s=small+groups

Clusters:

The St. Tom’s Example:

In fact, Mike Breen (former rector of St. Tom’s Church in Sheffield England where cluster terminology developed) told me in a personal conversation that “Clusters are like the movie: My Big Fat Greek Wedding.  That is because the cluster is made up of many nuclear families, which we call small groups, and this network of nuclear families creates an extended family feel – that’s what we call a cluster” (personal conversation, Peak District, UK, May 2005).

In Mike’s mind you could think of the small groups as each a circular grape, and when you get a bunch of small groups together you got a “cluster” (often sized 30-75).  So, a cluster is a network of small groups linked by a tribal or extended family identity.

But, Mike and his colleague Bob Hopkins felt the key to healthy clusters, is to “missionalize” these clusters is by addressing three elements.

Online you can find the book by Bob Hopkins and Mike Breen titled “Clusters: creating midsized missional communities” (3DMinistries.com and Alderway Publishing).

Dunbar’s Number:

An Introduction to Dunbar’s Number (from Whitesel’s Facts & Trends interview):

“Churches are taking advantage of Dunbar’s number,” says Bob Whitesel, a professor at Indiana Wesleyan University and church growth expert. Robin Dunbar, a British anthropologist, found humans can comfortably maintain only around 150 stable relationships. Beyond that, says Whitesel, “relationships don’t seem to have much depth.”

This is why he believes many churches stall around this plateau. “Once it gets bigger than that, people stop inviting others because they no longer know everyone else at church,” he says.

It’s incumbent on large church leaders to capitalize on smaller groups that organically emerge in the church. Whitesel calls these “sub-congregations,” and they mirror other numbers Dunbar found in his research. Groups of 50 can unite around a task, such as the music ministry or preschool volunteers. Small group gatherings of 15 have the feel of an extended family, and groups of five are intimate connections.

These numbers have been seen not only in sociological research but also in church history, Whitesel says. “In the Wesleyan revivals, every leader had to be involved in what they called ‘Band Meetings’ of five individuals. Larger groups of 15 were called ‘Class Meetings.’”

Sub-congregations

Defined:

A sub-congregation is a group within the church, that functions, in Asbury Professor George Hunter’s words, as “a church within a church.” (For a definition of a sub-congregation, click HERE)

Explained:

…I have noted in some of my other wiki- postings (CLICK HERE), that sub-congregations form as a natural “organizational behavior” and that we must recognize them if we are to “manage” their behavior. Thus, I think many students have found it helpful to look at their emerging sub-congregations (which are currently of small group size) so they can manage them into growth and eventually a full-fledged (and larger) sub-congregation.

The idea of sub-congregations is found in church organizational writers such as in my books (2000:25-30; 2007:50-71) as well as:

Eddie Gibbs (I Believe in Church Growth, Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1981: 276-280),

Pete Wagner (Your Church Can Grow, Oregon, Resource Pub., 2001:101-102 ),

Larry Richards (A New Face for the Church, Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan 1970: 34-35)

George G. Hunter (The Contagious Congregation [Nashville, Tennessee: Abingdon Press] 1979:63) of which Hunter said that every congregation is a really “a congregation of congregations” (p. 63).

Many non-consultant leadership writers are largely unaware to this because they are students of leadership but not necessarily of organizational behavior.  Most management scholars believe that you must first understand an organization’s “behavior” before you try to manage it.  Thus, while working on my Ph.D. at Fuller I had Kent Miller of Michigan State as a professor (he is a Professor of Strategic Management there). Dr. Miller stressed that church leaders often fail at leadership because they don’t first analyze and understand the organizational behavior they are trying to manage.  All that is to say is that the writings on this are not massive (but they should be).

The student also wrote, “But I also notice that the sub-congregations that I do have (boomer’s and GenX) seem to be moving together well – at what point do you beginning looking at their inherent differences and start strategizing for it?’”

SUB-CONGREGATIONS & How To Use Them to Grow a Small Church in Just 6-Steps  Take a look at that posting.  Also, here is a quick synopsis:

1) Locate emerging sub-congregational cultures in the community.

2)  Mentor an indigenous leader from the culture you identified in Step 1 who will bring together a small group for Biblical discipleship of this indigenous culture.

3) Get the existing small group to plant another group like themselves. Don’t try to force them to divide. Rather, encourage them to reach more people by starting another group like themselves at another time or place. This is called “seeding” a new small group, where a couple leaders and a few people volunteer to start this new small group.

4)  Cluster or network your small groups at least once a quarter. By this I mean get your small groups from the same emerging sub-congregation together at least once every three months for unity building.

5)  Create more small groups as new ones approach 12 in attendance.  Use the small group “seeding” strategy of Step 3 above.  And, use Step 4 to keep these new small groups “clustering” once a quarter with other small groups of their cultural sub-congregation.

6)  Once you have a total of 50 people in your small group network, or cluster, create a new and regular worship encounter for them. This then becomes the new worship encounter for this emerging sub-congregation.  (Notice that like John Wesley, small groups [class meetings] are created before big worship gatherings [society meetings].)

I am usually stretching students with ostensibly non-traditional strategies, but the typical strategies (making everyone melt into an indistinct grey-green cultural goo) is not working.  And, the strategy I outlined above is working in churches that are growing amid disinterested and unfriendly cultures, such as St. Thomas’ Church in Sheffield England (http://www.sttoms.net ).

Size How it Affects Organizational Behavior/Structure

McIntosh Typology:

Gary McIntosh in “Taking Your Church to the Next Level: What Got You Here Won’t Get You There.”  In the book and conference he outlined Church levels as such:

The Relational Church: 15-200 worshippers
The Managerial Church: 200-400 worshippers
The Organizational Church: 400-800 worshippers
The Centralized Church: 800-1,500 worshippers
The Decentralized Church: 1,500-plus worshippers

Whitesel Typology = McIntosh + Dunbar

Gary McIntosh has helped by delineating different types of churches. But he knows that I disagree with him on one aspect. And that is that you don’t have to have that number of worshipers to be that type of church. In other words, some of us have seen churches that are overly organized in the 150 range. And we have seen churches that exhibit all the hallmarks of the centralized church in the 300 range.

What I think is a key is that churches can be “decentralized” much before they’re up to 1500 worshipers. What Gary is saying is that churches typically are decentralized once they get over 1,500 worshipers.

But, I have seen many churches that are over 1,500 worshipers which really are structured like an organizational church. Gary knows I disagree with him and that is because I tend to work with more different varieties and sizes of churches. But I think the personalities of these five churches are valid … but just not that these personalities are limited to these size ranges.

Now, why is this important?  It is important because the “decentralized church” is for McIntosh the goal of churches.  And, I agree.  I just think you can be “decentralized” for health and growth much earlier … even around 100 attendees.

Continue reading

REFUGEES & Frequently Asked Questions

What is a refugee?

Refugees are people who have fled their country because it is no longer safe. A refugee is defined by the 1951 Refugee Convention as someone who “owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his/her nationality.”

How many refugees are in the world today?

According to the 2014 Global Trends data published by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, by the end of 2014, 59.5 million individuals have been forcibly displaced worldwide as a result of persecution, conflict, generalized violence, or human rights violations. This 2014 data is 8.3 million persons more than the year before (51.2 million) and the highest annual increase in a single year. Of the 59.5 million forcibly displaced, 38 million have been uprooted within their own countries, and 21 million are refugees and asylum seekers.
Source: http://www.dhs.gov/yearbook-immigration-statistics-2013-refugees-and-asylees

How long do refugees live in refugee camps?

Stays can vary from 1 month to 20 years. Refugees stay in a camp until they are able to return safely to their homes (repatriation) or until the UNHCR decides to resettle them permanently in another country. This decision is sometimes reached only after a generation living in refugee camps. Currently, there are actually more refugees living in urban settings than in camps.

Do refugees come here speaking English?

Some refugees learned English in their home countries before they were displaced, and some had access to some English education in the refugee camps. While some arrivals are fluent English speakers, others have had few opportunities to learn it, although they may speak many other languages.

Do refugees come here with an education or job skills?

Some refugees were highly educated working professionals before they were displaced, while others have been essentially warehoused in refugee camps for most of their life and were unable to work. Some camps provide good educational opportunities for the children, and others do not.

Do refugees get to decide where they want to go?

No. They could be sent to any of the 28 countries which resettle refugees. They can turn down a resettlement placement, but would then have to wait again for another option elsewhere.

What countries did the refugees come from?

In the last two decades, Grand Forks has become home to refugees from Bosnia, Burundi, Bhutan, Ethiopia, Iraq, Liberia, Somalia, Sudan, and Uganda. Currently most arrivals to Grand Forks are coming from Bhutan and Somalia.

Read more at … http://www.gfcoalition.org/faqs.html

 

REFUGEES & How local churches can minister to refugees

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel:  Today 19 Doctor of Ministry students visited the flourishing ministry (and community gardens) of Friends of Refugees.  Watch this video to discover how local churches can begin to reach this burgeoning refugee population.

 

NEED MEETING & A Canvass Question to Ascertain Community Needs

Figure 2.5 Canvass Question (Cure for the Common Church, 2012, p. 38)

“Hello. My name is _____(name)_____ and I am from _____(name of church)_____. I am asking people to help us understand what are the greatest needs of this community that a church like ours could address?

An abbreviated version by the author, 2016:

“Hello. My name is _____(name)_____ and I am from _____(name of church)_____.   What are the greatest needs of this community that a church like ours could address?

A brief overview of this from Cure for the Common Church: God’s Plan for Church Health:

Focus 1: OUT. In Jesus’s ministry we see a ongoing emphasis on reaching out to nonreligious people and people in need (e.g. Luke 6:31-33). But churches quickly become inwardly focused, looking more after their own needs than the needs of those outside their church.

Tool 1 to Focus OUT: ASK. Get your administrative board and staff to go out on a Saturday morning walk through the church neighborhood and areas from which you draw your congregants. Tell them to ask people they meet this simple question: “What could a church like ours do to meet needs of people in this community?” Don’t ask them what you can do to meet their personal needs. That is too personal. Rather ask them to tell you about community needs. Usually they will tell you about their own needs. Then go back to the church and compile a list of needs. Pick out a couple needs that your church is equipped or is beginning to be equipped to address. Then reallocate funds and volunteers to meet those needs. I advise churches to do this twice a year. This keeps leaders listening for needs in the community. One church board member said, “I now work that question subtly into my conversations all year long. I find a lot of interesting needs in this community that way. And it helps me be a better board member because I can help the church focus on meeting needs outside the church.”

Here are some other tactical ideas for ascertaining community needs:

DMIN & New Fox Talk Show w/ Atlanta Pastor Dr. Dewey Smith

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel (6/27/16): My Doctor of Ministry students and I enjoyed an anointed time time of fellowship as well as  tremendous hospitality at House of Hope Church (also known as Greater Travelers Rest Church) in Atlanta Georgia last weekend. The pastor, Dr. E. Dewey Smith invited me and one of our students to greet the megachurch audience. Dr. Smith and I have had a great friendship and he shared that he will be participating in a new Fox TV discussion show similar to The View. Called “The Preachers” here’s a clip to introduce you as God expands the ministry of House of Hope Church.

 

Here is the press release:

Press Release
FOX TELEVISION STATIONS AND WARNER BROS. DOMESTIC TELEVISION
DISTRIBUTION PARTNER FOR SUMMER PREVIEW OF
“THE PREACHERS,” FROM TELEPICTURES

Co-Creator and Longtime Former Executive Producer of “The View”
Bill Geddie to Helm Preview Which Debuts July 11

May 2, 2016 – Los Angeles – Daytime TV is about to get uplifted this summer. FOX Television Stations and Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution will debut a three-week daily preview of “The Preachers,” an all-new take on the popular panel talk show format from Telepictures Productions that features four dynamic and outspoken preachers who are known for their electrifying and unique takes on pop culture, news events and spirituality. The series will premiere July 11 on FOX-owned stations in New York and Los Angeles, with additional select stations and markets to be announced in the future. The announcement was made jointly today by Frank Cicha, Senior Vice President of Programming, FOX Television Stations, and Ken Werner, President, Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution.

“The Preachers” will be executive produced by Emmy® Award winner Bill Geddie, marking the return to daytime TV for the co-creator and longtime executive producer of “The View” for 17 seasons. Jeff Gaspin and Andrew Glassman will also serve as executive producers. The show will be produced by Telepictures.

“After ‘The View,’ I figured I’d never do another panel show, but these preachers knocked me off my feet,” said Geddie. “They’re not just another set of talking heads yakking about the events of the day; they bring real-world experience as pastors and counselors. They have a unique spiritual take on things, and they’re funny as hell…I mean, heck!”

“The Preachers” will be hosted by:

· John Gray, a gifted musician and Associate Pastor at Lakewood Church in Houston, under the leadership of Pastor Joel Osteen;

· Dr. E. Dewey Smith, Jr., Senior Pastor/Teacher at The House of Hope Atlanta and The House of Hope Macon (GA), whose television broadcasts and media ministries are viewed by millions around the world;

· Orrick Quick, Pastor and Founder of God Seekers Church in High Point, NC, a passionate advocate of outreach ministry to serve his community;

· Dr. Jamal Bryant, Pastor and Founder of Empowerment Temple AME Church in Baltimore, known for his vocal and empowering stance on political and socio-economic issues.

The show will be a fun and energetic hour with moments of true inspiration. Collectively, the preachers have counseled thousands of people throughout America. Now it’s their turn to bring usable information, up-lifting inspiration and actionable motivation to television audiences everywhere.

Cicha stated, “Our last preview with a preacher went so well, doing one with four seemed like a no-brainer.”

“We are thrilled to continue our ongoing relationship with FOX. This latest endeavor features new faces and fresh voices with a unique point of view that is currently not on TV,” said Werner.

“Religions vary, but we are all people and we all need hope,” said “The Preachers” co-hosts. “Hope is what we will bring you each and every day on this show, along with the ability to help and empower those in your life.”
# # #
WBTV Contact: Scott Rowe 818-954-5806

DMIN & @ WesleySeminary Leadership Students at Ebenezer Baptist in Atlanta where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. served.

Pictured with speakers Dr. Jimmy McGee, Dr. Raphel Warnock & faculty mentor Professor Whitesel.