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Leadership and growth targets

Churches in Britain and the US are  looking to the concept of "leadership" to show the way to reverse decline.  This is demonstrated by the larger number of conferences and published research on how to grow churches John Lindell is the Lead Pastor of James River Church in Missouri is commenting on an upcoming church leadership conference. He say: "a church’s growth is dependent on the growth and effectiveness of its leadership.”

In a recent article in Christianity Today the leadership of the Anglican church were criticised for trying to lead" 


"The bishops Church of England bishops must stop acting as CEOs 'chasing growth targets' and return to being shepherds of their flocks, clergy are being told. The Church's increasingly 'organisational and bureaucratic' approach leaves clergy feeling 'guilty' if they don't meet growth targets, a priests' support group was told, as the CofE desperately tries to halt decades of decline."


Speaking to an audience at the charity Sons & Friends of the Clergy, Professor Martyn Percy, who also teaches in the theology faculty, said that bishops "need to stop being the CEO of an organisation that is chasing growth targets". 


But these comments are way wide of the mark.  Bishops are leaders, the word means supervisors, and it is encouraging to see them act as such. The church needs leaders to drive the church in the way that Jesus commanded.  Jesus set a growth target: in fact everyone everywhere is called to repentance (Acts 17.30) and Jesus tells us, the church, to disciple and baptise people. Then the success of this is reported over and over again by reporting conversion numbers (throughout Acts). The mission continues and setting growth targets then measuring success afterwards is, as I have just shown, the Jesus way as taught in the Bible. Thank God the leadership in the Church of England getting  in tune with what the Bible teaches.






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