Project Documents

Date of Award

1979

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Arnold Kurtz

Second Advisor

James Chase

Third Advisor

Norman K. Miles

Abstract

The most urgent concern of the twentieth-century church is building an effective working team composed of pastor and laymen (or lay people) that will be responsive to the commission of carrying the gospel to the world. Methods must be discovered so that intentional pastors can help bring intentional congregations into being. In the context of management by objectives, self-assessment and goal setting may be the means by which intentional congregations are created. If this is true, the pastor needs to know how to apply the concept of management by objectives to his ministry.

To develop guidelines for the introduction of a system of management by objectives into the local church, models have been studied and literature surveyed in the areas of (1 ) theology of the church as an institution in need of management, (2 ) management by objectives in modern profit organizations, (3) management by objectives in non-profit organizations. In addition, surveys were conducted among members of one congregation to discover the degree of change that could be attributed to the introduction into the church of management by objectives.

The study of Scripture reveals that the church is an institution in need of organization and management. Literature in the management field was found to be rich in sound theoretical principles that can be adapted to effective management of the church. The management-by-objectives plan introduced into the Buchanan, Michigan, Seventh-day Adventist church sought to implement these principles arid ideals into the everyday life of the church members. The interest and participation of the congregation suggest that the same program could be used with some modification in other congregations. Some areas should be expanded and others shortened or adjusted to include additional strategies. An oral and written survey conducted among the members of the congregation showed generally favorable responses to the facilitative style of church management which is a broad management-by-objectives concept. Church growth, increased attendance, and improved stewardship each attest to the favor with which the project was accepted by the congregation.

While a new pastor naturally effects some changes in a congregation, the introduction of a new well-developed plan of management into the church effects greater and more long-range changes. The employment of modified objectives and goals each year using the principles of management by objectives will help the congregation become a better witness to the community in which it lives, and in the process the congregation and pastor become united by their common goals. There was an enthusiastic response when sixty members of the Buchanan congregation met to evaluate the 1978 program and set their goals for 1979. In this meeting laymen led in the goal-setting process and the pastor served as secretary.

Subject Area

Church management; Management by objectives; Buchanan Seventh-day Adventist Church (Buchanan, Mich.)s

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