Moving beyond the school bus


The most important factors to keep in mind — and questions to ask yourself — when looking for transportation for your congregation


Creative & Proven Strategies: Preparation is a Game-Changer for Capital Campaign Success

What does true preparation look like leading up to the public-facing phase of a capital campaign? What does a financial roadmap look like? What’s something even churches who’ve done capital campaigns before DON’T know about preparation? How does church size affect the process? Capital campaign expert Paul Gage answers some key questions.


How to make teens feel at home at your church — online


Emily Kantner, communications specialist at Elexio, explains how


What Executive Pastors Should Know About Assimilation


By Steve Caton ‘Assimilation’ sounds like a big, scary word. But it’s a vital part of any healthy church that’s thriving in ministry. Do assimilation well, and you’ll have the people and money you need to continue to move your church forward. Do assimilation poorly, and you’ll lose people and ministry funding — and you […]


Radical turnarounds are made of these


Trust, confidence, leadership – but the greatest is vision.


Too big to fail?


A lack of succession planning will hinder an organization from moving forward.


More effective churches


The Willow Creek MOVE study follows on from the REVEAL survey in finding


Best practices and role models: four churches, four sizes

First Baptist of Orlando is a role model of the strategy Becoming Christ-Centered, which senior pastor David Uth summarizes in a statement he routinely makes to his 6,000 congregants:


Who says small, rural churches can’t grow? Not Shannon O’Dell


Ever tempted to think “we’re just a country church of 30 souls, we’ll never grow much larger”? Or you’ve thought, “There’s no way we will ever see our church at 3,000 people.” Don’t tell that to Shannon O’Dell, senior pastor of Brand New Church in the small, rural church of Bergman, AR. O’Dell tells about his experience of raising up a church of 30 to 3,000 over just six years in Transforming Church in Rural America: Breaking All the Rurals (New Leaf Press, 2010). He talks about “the rules” about the rurals — “the unspoken but clearly understood values that permeate American Christianity’s beliefs about churches in the boonies.” Bottom line, he says, is “forget the rules.”

Church Executive shared some questions with Pastor O’Dell:

Describe the area in which the church is located; what is “rural” about the area? Bergman, AR, population 407, just got a Dollar General! There are no major employers in this town, but a great school and wonderful people. The Klu Klux Klan is headquartered just a few miles from our campus, but has no impact on slowing down the love of God to every race in our community.


A church’s culture is the atmosphere in which the church functions


When it comes to a church, what is a church’s culture? Samuel R. Chand says “culture is the strongest force in any organization. The best way to understand culture is the statement: ‘This is how we do things here.’”

Consultant Sam Chand has written Cracking Your Church’s Culture: Seven Keys to Unleashing Vision & Inspiration (Jossey-Bass, 2010, a Leadership Network publication), and says, “It is the atmosphere in which the church functions. It is the prevalent attitude. It is the collage of spoken and unspoken messages.”

“The strongest force in an organization is not vision or strategy — it is the culture which holds all the other components,” says Chand. Every leader at some time or the other has asked the same question: “Why is it that we are not where I know we should be as a church?” Now, you know the answer — it’s your church’s culture.

He recently gave an interview to Church Executive:

Say I’m new to a church. Should I be able to pick up on its culture sitting in the pew? Absolutely! You can go to a new church and sniff culture! Have you ever been to a new place and said to yourself (or others!), “Something’s not right.” Without knowing what it is you just smelled culture. Think about the different cultures in different restaurants, schools, churches and even homes.