The increasing anxiety and reactivity across society witnessed in elections, responses to COVID-19, and even within personal posts on social media platforms is a phenomenon that is growing invasively and pervasively present in ministry leadership. Murray Bowen’s family systems theory (1978) seminal concepts of societal emotional process and emotional reactivity describe the phenomenon with acumen. This article outlines these two concepts and provides current examples of how they are being experienced by ministry leaders. Biblical examples demonstrate that the phenomenon has always been present in ministry leadership. Practical guidance is provided for ministry leaders to address this growing challenge by means of their own self-differentiation, thus providing an accessible response and strategy to this pervasive leadership issue.
Schonberg, Douglas U.
"Societal Emotional Process, Emotional Reactivity, and Their Increasing Challenge for Ministry Leadership,"
Journal of Applied Christian Leadership:
Available at: https://digitalcommons.andrews.edu/jacl/vol15/iss1/7