Here are answers to some common questions about our work, and about consulting and coaching in general.
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Can churches do the visioning work themselves?
Yes, sometimes. However, facilitating vision conversations is a somewhat specialized area. Some leaders have the background; if that is the case with your church, go for it! On the other hand, if the church’s ministry has stalled, sometimes it is helpful to bring in outside experts who have worked with other churches experiencing similar issues.
Can the pastor (or pastoral team) just define the vision for the church?
In some specific situations, a top-down vision will work – but those situations are few and far between, and usually involve the vision of a new church plant with strong, energetic leadership. In existing congregations, the vision is best discerned and developed in community, with an emphasis on consensus, shared energy, and shared tasks.
Will UnstuckChurch.net provide just the visioning resources, and allow church leadership to facilitate the workshop themselves?
The visioning workshop incorporates educational components about the nature of ministry today, as well as conversations about successful churches we have worked with and/or encountered in our research. Further, the faith components of the workshop require familiarity with the prayer practices used (remember, this is not just a corporate visioning event). The bottom line is that the resources are just a part of what we offer, and the entire consulting service is built around our particular combination of gifts and skills. So, no – it is a package deal!
Why would our pastor require coaching? The pastor should already be an expert in church leadership!
No one can be an expert in everything, and keep this in mind – even the best physician knows when to consult with others, or even refer patients to specialists. Having a clergy coach is a sign of a strong, competent leader – not a weak one!
Do you guarantee good results?
We wish we could, but the success of visioning and coaching is dependent on everyone involved. In terms of vitality, there is no one answer for all churches – every church’s ministry occurs in its local context. Vital ministry starts with vital Christians – and that means that people need to be willing to step into new kinds of faith lives. Vital ministry is also dependent on strong leadership, organizational flexibility, and more. We do guarantee that we will, at the very least, get people thinking.
Do you only work with United Methodist churches?
No! Our theology is quite Wesleyan, but our approach should work with Christian churches and faith-based organizations of all types. Contact us so we can talk about possibilities!