Perspectives for Congregational Leaders

The Congregational Consulting Group, organized in 2014 by former consultants of the Alban Institute, is a network of independent consultants. We publish weekly thoughts on topics of interest leaders of congregations and other purpose-driven organizations.

—Dan Hotchkiss, editor

pinocchio lying

Five Lies We Like to Tell About Church Growth

Some churches grow, and others shrink. Most oscillate for decades around a size that it finds comfortable. When a church gets too small for its own comfort, it plugs newcomers into spots left vacant by those who have departed. When it grows too big, it lets newcomers know they are not needed. This oscillation can […]

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Unhealed Trauma (tethered butterfly)

Recovering from Trauma in Congregations

In the last 50 years, not a single minister had survived at First Community Church for more than five. There were many theories as to why. The generally accepted rationale was simply that “First Community chews up its pastors.” Pastor Bethany, who had received plenty of warnings before accepting the lead minister role at First […]

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Sunset or Dawn

Letting Go of This Pastor and Preparing for the Next

A pastoral transition is announced. One era of leadership winds down as the promise of a new one beckons. People are naturally drawn to the excitement of beginnings; however, a healthy beginning with a new pastor depends on a good ending with the exiting pastor. The problem is, people avoid and minimize the losses associated […]

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green leaves growing

To Grow or Not to Grow: Not Always an Easy Question

Most congregations say they want to grow in membership and mission—a goal that feels more urgent as the members age. In worship, a person aged 65 is likely to see mostly older people. It’s a good way to feel young at age 65! However, it is not a great sign for the congregation’s future. If […]

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Loren-Mead

Loren B. Mead, founder of the Alban Institute

  Loren B. Mead 1930—2018 Loren B. Mead, founder of the Alban Institute, died at home in Alexandria, Virginia on May 5, 2018. We are grateful for Loren’s wisdom and persistent energy. He invented many new ways to help congregations by consulting with them, learning about them, and sharing insights and ideas generated in the […]

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