Eight Keys for Thriving Faith Communities
July 6-8, 2016 Leadership
Polarities are those unavoidable, unsolvable, indestructible dilemmas of life. Our only choice with life polarities is to manage them, either well or poorly. Problems or conflicts usually involve either/or thinking. There is one solution to the issue. Polarities require both/and thinking. They have two right answers that are interlocked with each other. For example, our capacity to breathe involves the two poles of inhaling and exhaling. Each has an upside and a downside. The downside of one pole is answered by the upside of the opposite pole. Another polarity that most of us have to manage, either well or poorly, is being a nice person or being a tough person. We likely have tried both, depending on to whom we are relating. Most of us, however, have a preference for one of these poles over the other. Whenever we favor one pole over the other, we pay a price for that preference.
Thriving congregations have to wrestle with at least eight key polarities. They have come to manage these polarities well, hence their ability to thrive. Other congregations are not managing these polarities well and are struggling, either financially, in loss of members or in vitality. The following congregational polarities will be explored in depth at this workshop.
- Tradition vs. innovation
- Spiritual health vs. institutional health
- Management vs. leadership
- Strong clergy vs. strong lay leaders
- Inreach vs. outreach
- Nurture vs. transformation
- Making Disciples: Easy process vs. challenging process
- Managing volunteers: Duty vs. call
This workshop will also explore the inherent polarities involved in being an effective pastor within a congregation.
Contact Hours: 18
Wednesday – Thursday, 9 a.m.- 5 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m.- 3 p.m.
Roy Oswald, Executive Director, The Center for Emotional Intelligence and Human Relations Skills