Professional Dissertations DMin

Date of Award


Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry


Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary


Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Curtis Fox

Second Advisor

Rene Drumm

Third Advisor

Richard Sylvester



The Immanuel Seventh-day Adventist Church is a multiracial congregation with members from over 35 countries, with approximately 200 families in regular attendance. Twenty percent of these families are interracial families, while 80% are a balanced mix of ethnic makeup. Reports from leaders and members, as well as pastoral observation, led us to the conclude that many families were affected by family squabbles and separation due to unresolved conflict. Consequently, there was a high level of stress and family dissatisfaction. This resulted in declining participation in ministry and mission.


A 10-hour conflict-management education-training program was developed and implemented. The Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument and the Family Satisfaction Scale survey were used to determine family members’ conflict styles and levels of satisfaction within their families, respectively; the Family Satisfaction Scale survey was used for pre- and post-evaluation. A series of four conflict-management seminars were conducted, using the Conflict Workshop Facilitator’s Guide. The participants’ responses to a set of study questions and the survey instruments were used in order to evaluate the impact of the education program on the participants’ experiences.


Twenty-six participants enrolled in the 10-hour conflict-management education program. Participants reported that their most frequently used conflict mode when handling conflict in the family were avoiding (38%) and accommodating (38%). In addition, family satisfaction levels experienced an overall growth of 41%. Moreover, responses to the research questions show that the conflict-management seminars had a positive impact overall. Participants indicated that an improvement to the program would be to have more time and role playing.


This study revealed that family members who are intentional and equipped to manage conflict using the skills and modes of the Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument can positively affect conflict management, which leads to improved family satisfaction. Therefore, implementing this educational seminar in other settings has merit and benefits, and I would recommend it.

Subject Area

Immanuel Seventh-day Adventist Church (Toronto, Canada); Church work with families--Canada--Toronto--Seventh-day Adventists; Racially mixed families--Canada; Seventh-day Adventist families--Canada--Toronto

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