Professional Dissertations DMin

Date of Award

2022

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

College

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Tom Evans

Second Advisor

Theodore Levterov

Third Advisor

Brad Cauley

Abstract

Problem.

The Grand Prairie Seventh-day Adventist Church is one of the oldest Seventh-day Adventist congregations in the state of Texas, and as such has given birth to numerous other congregations. Over time, however, the makeup of the surrounding community slowly changed and no longer reflected that of the church. Because of language, cultural, and socioeconomic differences, the church was slowly becoming irrelevant and incapable to minister to its immediate community. The building was 57 years old and in dire need of repairs. Adding to the challenge was the fact that the 1.88-acre property was completely surrounded by other properties; space for social activities and parking was extremely limited, preventing future growth. A change of location was desperately needed for the church to fulfill its God-given mission.

Method

Various leadership skills and strategies based on biblical models were employed as change was initiated and processed. Regular meetings with church leaders and with the larger church body were conducted to assess the effectiveness of such change, and appropriate adjustments were made. Ultimately, this process was God-led and inspired, and it was His divine wisdom that guided the application of these skills and strategies.

Results

After 14 years of God-led incremental and consistent change, in 2019, the Grand Prairie Seventh-day Adventist Church moved to its new location at 4125 Lake Ridge Parkway in Grand Prairie, Texas. As a result, attendance doubled. Over this process of change, total local giving steadily grew, and tripled during the year of completion. Community-wide initiatives were well attended, not only by local church members but also by people from the local community. Through the process, the church congregation experienced a new birth and was fundamentally revitalized in every aspect of life.

Conclusion

Change is at the very foundation of life, and leaders are called by God to assist Him in transforming one life at a time. Leading change is a partnership between God and humans. While God is supreme in this partnership, He still expects and encourages the human partners to master their God-given potential while continuing to learn new skills and creating new strategies.

Subject Area

Grand Prairie Seventh-day Adventist Church (Grand Prairie, Tex.); Seventh-day Adventist church buildings--Texas; Church renewal--Seventh-day Adventists; church management; Christian leadership

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