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 to leaders of congregations and other purpose-driven organizations.

—Dan Hotchkiss, editor

Vanessa Williams and Joelle Anderson

The Seminary Class of 2014

by Susan Nienaber I sat down recently with two new friends, Joelle Anderson and Vanessa Williams, recent graduates of Bethel Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota. As an older, mainline Protestant clergywoman speaking with two much younger women-one African-American and the other Euro-American, both graduating from an evangelical seminary-I was curious about the worldview of two […]

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How to Give Away Your Power

by Dan Hotchkiss It’s relatively easy to find people willing to do tasks. It’s hard to cultivate real leaders—people to take charge of projects and gather others to get something done. As one pastor put it, “We have willing workers, but I can’t seem to create leaders. I can delegate work, but I don’t know […]

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What Should a Minister Be Good At?

by Sarai Schnucker Rice As it turns out, not Greek and Hebrew. Or at least not only Greek and Hebrew. And even if the list of things to be good at were to include all the other usual subjects taught in seminary—Greek, Hebrew, Old Testament, New Testament, systematic theology, liturgy, preaching, teaching, pastoral care, all […]

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Free to Discern

by Susan Beaumont “This is a congregation, not a business.” If only I had a dollar for every time a congregational leader made this bold assertion in my presence. Typically, right after making this claim leaders go on to conduct the meeting at hand, exactly as if the church were a business. Oh yes, someone […]

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Why Lone Rangers Always Fail

by David BrubakerLeading a successful change process in a congregation, even a very traditional one, is possible. But to do so a leader must earn the right to make that change and partner with others to make it happen. Lone ranger leaders who ride into Dodge and transform an entire community exist only in the […]

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