Who Is This Church? The Necessity of Proper Assessment, Leadership, and Strategy for the Church in Transition
In the 21st Century, the relevance of needed “change” in congregations is growing. With communities changing in makeup, congregational leadership dwindling, and congregational health often suffering, pastors and members alike need to be prepared to make the necessary adjustments for their congregation “in transition.” Many congregations face a struggle as they look to adjust to the changes or problems around them, while others simply need to find a new direction because of positive changes. No matter what the change or need that confronts a congregation, it will benefit from becoming more aware of several basic needs as they develop a strategy moving forward. The goal of this paper is to provide a significant amount of research done with pastors experienced in overcoming transition, several conservative and contemporary authors' approaches to transition, and a biblical study of a gospel-centered approach to transition. The approach offered and discussed in this paper follows the Identity Method. The emphasis in this approach is assessment, the gospel as motivation, and leadership led change.