Dissertation Projects DMin

Date of Award

1997

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Bruce L. Bauer

Second Advisor

Erich W. Baumgartner

Third Advisor

Ricardo Norton

Abstract

Problem

The English-speaking Seventh-day Adventist church in the Bay Islands has experienced slow growth over the last ten years. An evaluation reveals that some of the problems include poor evangelistic methods, few well trained pastors and workers, the churches' lack of support from the local mission and pastors, and no material provisions for the departments of the church. In addition, programs are lacking to help members come in contact with secular-minded people, and the methods used to improve the retention rate of newly- baptized members indicate there is a tremendous need for change in the style of evangelism in the English-speaking churches of the Bay Islands.

Method

This dissertation analyzes the introduction of Christianity in Honduras and how the Seventh-day Adventist church was planted in the Bay Islands. It seeks to develop methods and approaches which would be helpful for those who will be engaged in this ministry. In order to gain the necessary insights for an effective approach to church growth, a description of church growth as recorded in the biblical book of Acts is given.

Results

The results of the study indicated that the Bay Islands Mission did not take into consideration other options and new approaches to evangelism in their attempt to evangelize the English-speaking people of the Bay Islands. It was emphasized that contact programs are not only an effective vehicle for evangelism, but also provide situations in which the cooperative ministry of the laity and clergy come into contact with the people of the community, thereby, developing healthy relationships. These results call for new programs and methods to reach the English-speaking people of the Bay Islands.

Conclusion

It is important to remember that the programs presented in this project are only methods and should not be considered the only and absolute method. I am convinced, however, that if the Bay Islands Mission adopts the contact programs presented in this project it will cause church renewal, revitalization, and growth. This project concludes that if the Bay Islands English-speaking churches should experience any significant growth, the old methods of evangelism used to evangelized the English-speaking people must give way to new approaches.

Subject Area

Seventh-day Adventists--Honduras; Church growth--Honduras--Seventh-day Adventists; Evangelistic work--Seventh-day Adventists--Honduras

DOI

https://dx.doi.org/10.32597/dmin/571

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