Missions--Strategy

Developing Mutual Spiritual Intimacy Among the leaders of Walking on the Water Ministries Through the Use of Ruth Haley Barton’s Book Pursuing God’s Will Together

Author
Walter Gregory Joseph D.Min.
Abstract
This research project used Ruth Haley Barton’s book Pursuing God’s Will Together, as a tool to develop mutual spiritual intimacy among the leaders of Walking on the Water Ministries. Sessions were completed with the leadership group over an eight-month period using some of the principles of participatory action research. Research methods included surveys, group sessions, Barton’s Personal Reflection exercises and questions, and my personal observations. The result was a personal growth experience for the leaders, as we journeyed together in developing mutual spiritual intimacy. x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

The Use of Appreciative Inquiry to Help a Congregation Through a Crisis Towards a More Positive Outlook: Reemphasizing Discipleship and Leadership Development

Author
Martin Edward Spoelstra D.Min.
Abstract
ABSTRACT

This portfolio was originally intended to research Discovery Church’s
journey to multisite. Over a four-month period just prior to launch of the second
site, the church dealt with a leadership and financial crisis brought on by a drop in
attendance. These changes necessitated putting multisite on hold and refocusing
energies on discipleship and mission.

The original research question proposed the use of an Appreciative Inquiry
model intended to help the congregation deal with the emotional and social shifts
to become one church with two locations. Facing new circumstances, the
Appreciative Inquiry model was modified to help the church deal with the
emotional and social concerns they had around the dramatic change in their
attendance and vision for multisite. This exercise gave an opportunity for the
Church to recall why they started as a church plant, some of the great things that
God had already done, the courage to risk once more, and step into a new future.

Out of the Appreciative Inquiry, Discovery Church embarked on the
rebuilding process that focused on clarifying their existing vision, developing
disciples making disciples, and a missional leadership development process,
eventually leading them back to the potential for multiplication.

The Effect of Preaching God's Mission in the Workplace

Author
Joseph Warrington D.Min.
Abstract
Thesis: A twelve week sermon series on God's mission would change the attitude (feeling) and practice (frequency) of mission in the workplace of members of Grace Church.
Research method: A mixed methods approach that utilized two open set surveys as well as participation in staggered focus groups, and interviews all designed to determine the defectiveness of the intervention.
The conclusion reached in the study conformed the intervention increased the participant's attitude (feelings) towards God's mission in the workplace. It also confirmed that the intervention increased the behavior (frequency) of the participant's in activities that promote God's mission in the workplace.

Project Title: Perspectives of Global Leaders on the Future of Multiethnic Collaboration: An Exploration

Author
Philip J. Smith D.Min.
Abstract
This Doctor of Ministry Project explored new opportunities for interorganizational collaboration within a specific network of ministry partners around the globe. It focused on multiethnic teams and organizations that have been birthed, in part, out of the ministry of Leadership Resources International (LRI), a pastoral training organization headquartered in Illinois.

The purpose of this project was to carefully gather and clearly understand perspectives from multiethnic leaders of these various teams and organizations around the world in order help LRI wisely navigate interorganizational collaboration.

In preparation for the field work, the author researched biblical, theological, historical, missiological and theoretical perspectives involved with worldwide, evangelical, multiethnic, interorganizational collaboration.

The methodology of the project followed the Appreciative Inquiry approach to qualitative, action research in order to carefully facilitate gathering wisdom from these leaders. Extended, semi-structured interviews were conducted with twenty leaders on eight leadership teams from eight separate countries. The transcribed recordings of the interviews were coded and analyzed. Findings and proposals were formulated for LRI leadership and recommendations presented for a wider audience.

The project found that damaging attitudes that accompany power-differentials pose the greatest challenge to effective interorganizational collaboration for this network. It also found that multifaceted wisdom and humility would have the greatest potential for combating that challenge and should permeate all interorganizational initiatives. For LRI, in particular, along with recommended means of cultivating wisdom and humility, the researcher recommended the formation of a carefully designed global entity as the best means of facilitating wise interorganizational collaboration amidst the wide-ranging challenges of power-differentials around the world.

Developing a Tool for Bridging Generation Gaps Via the Study and Execution of Local Mission Projects at Canton First Baptist Church, Canton, NC

Author
John Greene D.Min.
Abstract
Developing a Tool for Bridging Generation Gaps Via the Study and Execution of Local Mission Projects at Canton First Baptist Church, examined the idea that a church’s local mission efforts can unite people across generations, because focus on a greater goal bridges preconceptions. The researcher assembled groups of varying generational makeup, surveyed them to find preconceptions about missions and generations, and directed them to serve a local ministry. Tracking the groups’ opinions along generational lines throughout showed the effect missions made. The project showed local missions can bridge the generation gap, so long as the participants are open to change.

GUIDELINES FOR MOBILIZING CHINESE BI-VOCATIONAL KINGDOM WORKERS FOR THE NEWLY OPENING BELT ROAD COUNTRIES

Author
R. Strickler D.Min.
Abstract
The project set out to discover guidelines for how to best prepare Chinese bi-vocational Kingdom Workers to work and live missionally wherever God leads them. Of particular interest to the emerging missions candidates from China are Muslim peoples spread throughout the countries aligned with the emerging Belt Road Initiative.

A review of international marketplace ministry and business as mission practices was undertaken. The project research focuses on a sample of existing Chinese-led Business as Mission enterprises. Interviews were conducted with ten different Chinese executives or owners, located in seven different countries, including China proper.

Information on why companies chose to locate in an area and how the leaders were prepared, was elicited. Some correlation was made as to how the Chinese BAM companies conduct their businesses compared to the international BAM movement.

There was convergence between the two streams, and at the same time several distinct issues and opportunities emerged for the preparation of future Chinese workers. Among these are: solid teaching on the theology of work for both candidates and senders; the need for life-on- life discipleship training prior to going out; for those inexperienced in BAM or marketplace ministry, the recommendation for apprenticeship with an existing company prior to being deployed; and, the opportunity for Chinese BAM companies to capitalize on emerging green technologies.

The findings from these interviews provides material that will be used by the writer, his agency, and partners, in the preparation of bi-vocational Kingdom Workers. This will help new appointees they are coaching to live and work most effectively as they answer the call to go to unreached peoples in the newly opened Belt Road countries.

Disciple-making: Key Ingredients for Building God’s Kingdom

Author
Sidney Wes Emory Sr D.Min.
Abstract
The first century Church was founded in response to the disciple-making processes of Jesus. His disciples were transformed by following Jesus in a way that obedience, transformation, community, education, worship, and the expansion of God’s kingdom became the central themes of their lives.
This study addressed the need to understand the disciple-making process found in Scripture in a way that will yield the results that are found in the Book of Acts primarily those found in Acts 2:42-47.
Christian churches of every denomination, tradition, model, and size have been called to make disciples. The Scripture, literature, interviews, and surveys researched in this project were designed to discover transferrable suggestions that could focus all believers on the results of following the plans of God to build his kingdom using the process of disciple-making.
The results of the project revealed that the key to building the kingdom of God is found in the practices and plans of the ultimate disciple-maker, Jesus. It recommends having the correct mindset in of making disciples a part of everyday life, creating a deeper understanding of the worship of God, living relationally connected to other people in a process of becoming more like Christ, and focusing on God first in everyday life

DEVELOPING A STRATEGIC PLAN FOR CAMPUS MINISTRY TO UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS AT CONCORDIA UNIVERSITY--ANN ARBOR

Author
Ryan Peterson D.Min.
Abstract
Concordia University, located in Ann Arbor, Michigan, has always had a strong commitment to a Christ-centered ministry. But with a changing student body and an awareness of the changing needs of the millennial generation, it is clear that deliberate and intentional planning for ministry is needed. This major project has sought to consider the historical issues surrounding campus ministry, as well as the theological and biblical issues that undergird the ministry, in order to develop a strategic plan for campus ministry to undergraduate students.

This project focused on achieving four primary goals. The first goal was seeking to understand the values, ideals, influences, and preferences of the millennial generation. The second goal was to identify the five to seven greatest spiritual challenges facing the students at Concordia University--Ann Arbor. The third goal was to analyze and synthesize the findings from the identified challenges and SWOT analysis. Finally, the fourth goal was to describe the strategic plan for campus ministry at Concordia University--Ann Arbor.

The field research focused on three specific areas: writing a campus culture narrative based on three student focus groups, completing a SWOT analysis of current campus ministry programming by students, faculty, and staff, and then identifying the specific spiritual challenges facing our current students through a Delphi survey. Finally, a strategic plan with strategies, objectives, and tactics was completed and presented to the president of the university for his approval. The effectiveness of the field research components was evaluated, and each of the four goals of the major project have been achieved.

DEVELOPING A STRATEGIC PLAN FOR TRANSFORMING THE WAYS IN WHICH AN AFRICAN AMERICAN CHURCH MINISTERS IN A MULTI-ETHNIC CONTEXT

Author
K. Edward Copeland D.Min.
Abstract
This Doctor of Ministry project created a strategic plan to transform the way a historically African-American church named New Zion Baptist Church in Rockford, Illinois, does ministry in a multi-ethnic context. This project report detailed the process by which that strategic plan was formulated, evaluated, and designed to be implemented.

The project report began by providing the biblical and theological foundations for ethnic diversity within God's worshipping community. The project report also examined the current literature on multi-ethnic congregations and the contextual dynamics of African-American church history that impact ministry praxis.

The project was divided into a research phase and a synthesis phase. The research phase was designed to understand the current and projected demographics of the region and to ascertain the church's capacity and willingness for intercultural hospitality in light of the surrounding community's burgeoning immigrant Latino population. The synthesis phase of the project analyzed and interpreted the data and developed and evaluated a strategic plan with the help of the church leadership, membership, and ministry partners.

The project report concluded with a summary of the internal and external challenges New Zion must face in order to implement the strategic plan and the implications of this project for the local church and the church at large. Two insights gained from this project include that local Latinos viewed their cultural connection to Catholicism as a more significant barrier to interacting with an African-American congregation than doctrine or worship praxis and that biblical hospitality is essential to bridging ethnic and cultural divides.

DEVELOPING AN EPHESUS CATALYTIC PARTNERSHIP AS A NEW WAY TO PLANT REPRODUCING CHURCHES IN MEGAMETRO, USA AND BEYOND

Author
D.E. Heidenreich D.Min.
Abstract
MegaMetro (pseudonym) is a major metropolitan area in the United States, a world-class city where commerce, education and tourism flourish. It is also home to several historic and renowned Christian ministries. At the same time, however, MegaMetro is home to a dispersed and diverse group of an estimated 500,000 Muslims of which the church has largely left unengaged. In fact, there is no Muslim background believer church in the area. While many other cities in the United States have Iranian churches, MegaMetro has none.

Meanwhile, exciting reports of Church Planting Movements (CPMs) have sprung up around the world, especially among Muslim populations. Missionaries and other believers active in some of these movements have formed Ephesus Teams as multi-organizational, collaborative partnerships to create synergy and maintain momentum.

This project was initiated as an investigative study to learn more about these Ephesus Teams and to apply the learning to MegaMetro. The research done was qualitative, through the use of Interview Protocols. Six Ephesus Teams were studied through in-depth interviews with eleven key leaders. At the same time, a study was also made of workers ministering among Muslims in MegaMetro through thirteen face-to-face interviews.

The research found that while the Ephesus Teams are seeing significant fruit in several difficult places around the world, workers in MegaMetro are largely frustrated. The project concludes with a strategic plan which seeks to implement some of the best practices of the Ephesus Teams into the context of Muslim ministry in MegaMetro.
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