Project Documents

Date of Award

2012

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Zebron Ncube

Second Advisor

Kurt Johnson

Third Advisor

Timothy Nixon

Abstract

Problem. The Ephraim Seventh-day Adventist Church has experienced a significant declined over the last seven years. Nearly half of the membership was missing; however, one of the main reasons for this decline is the fact that church members failed to understand their calling to ministry and as a result they failed to assume their responsibility as disciples.

Method. A series of six seminars were given. The participants were taught the concept of the priesthood of all believers, the duty, and the responsibility of a disciple. Pre- and post-seminar surveys were administered by the researcher to measure understanding and growth acquired from those seminars. Data collected from the surveys was evaluated and was beneficial to the Ephraim Church. Recommendations were made that other churches in the Greater New York Conference area give a thorough study of the priesthood of all believers concept. The researcher recommended that follow-up get-togethers take place on a quarterly basis for those who were taught the priesthood of all believers concept so that they can share their ministry experiences with each other, and also to study new ways to share the concept with other believers.

Results. We had an attendance between 20 to 40 participants in each seminar. Four small groups were formed in order to identify those who were interested in learning and sharing the priesthood of all believers’ concept. Each small group was composed of five to seven members, and had for their task to grow the group to twelve people. When the group reached twelve, then a new group would be formed. The groups met once a week for Bible study, and then they would go out to reach others for Christ. Ministry in the groups began with the members of the groups, then to the members of Ephraim Church, and then they took their ministry outside to the community. Each group had a designated Sabbath to share their experiences with the church during the personal ministry minutes. We found small groups ministries to be among the best models to implement the priesthood of all believers’ concept. The Ephraim church members have been motivated by the results of these findings and manifested the desire to continue toward that path. Four people have received Christ as a result of the small group ministries, and we are currently preparing other people who joined these small groups to receive water baptism.

Conclusions. The priesthood of all believers concept advocated in this project seeks to train and equip members of the Ephraim Seventh-day Adventist Church for Christian duty. This concept creates a friendly environment for all believers to work together as a team and to foster a spirit of unity and togetherness among pastors and members. Team effort is the pathway to success. This research provided many practical and spiritual life changing lessons to both participants and the researcher. However, this model needs further reflection and implementation for improvement.

Subject Area

Priesthood, Universal, Lay ministry--Seventh-day Adventists, Laity

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