Consulting

How to Assess Your Ministry’s Health: This Is How We Approach It.

What steps have you taken lately to invest in the health of your ministry?

We all want healthy churches but, for some reason, taking time for a check-up isn’t on most pastors’ list of priorities.

Helping churches assess their ministry’s health is a big part — a vital part — of what we do. It’s the first step in our 4-Phase Planning Process because we believe you have to gain perspective before you can appropriately plan for the future.

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By | October 3rd, 2017|Consulting|0 Comments

Facing Your Fear of Change: An Interview with New Unstuck Consultant Jesse Tink

Meet Jesse Tink, one of our newest ministry consultants here at The Unstuck Group. Jesse is the Pastor of Campus Development at Prairie Lakes Church, which currently spans across six campuses in northeastern and central Iowa.

I recently had the opportunity to catch up with him and hear about his experience leading in a rural multisite church, and discover what areas he has consistently seen churches get stuck.

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By | September 26th, 2017|Consulting, Leadership|0 Comments

5 Questions with a Church That Used to Be Stuck

We love sharing stories from churches that have gotten unstuck. One of our goals with everything we publish is to encourage pastors. You may feel stuck today, but there is hope! Revitalization can happen.

So, in that spirit, today we’re sharing five questions with Burt Miller, the lead pastor of Solid Ground Church in Lewes, Delaware. We worked with Burt for about a year, and he and his church really began to see results about 6-8 months into the process. We’ll let Burt tell you about it.

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By | December 12th, 2016|Consulting|0 Comments

This Church Empowers More Volunteers with Fewer Staff

We recently released an updated version of my eBook Vital Signs: Why Church Health Matters and 14 Ways to Measure It. In it, we look at 14 key metrics that help assess the true health of churches.

As we continue this discussion on church health, I caught up with J.R. Lee, Lead Pastor of Freedom Church in Acworth, Georgia to talk about the Staff-to-Attendees ratio vital sign, and hear how Freedom remains a rapidly growing church, while employing fewer staff members than would be expected for a church of its size. Check out the interview below.

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By | November 30th, 2016|Consulting, Leadership|0 Comments

How One Church Is Seeing Personal Investment Lead to More Baptisms

Last week, we released an updated version of my eBook Vital Signs: Why Church Health Matters and 14 Ways to Measure It. In it, we look at 14 key metrics that help assess the true health of churches.

As we continue this discussion on church health, I caught up with Mike Mannes, Lead Pastor of Southside Church in British Columbia, to talk about the baptism rate vital sign, and how Southside is seeing so many people — 13% of their average attendance each year — take this step. Check out the interview below.

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By | November 16th, 2016|Consulting, Leadership|0 Comments

Prayer in Portland: This Church’s 72 Hour Vigil Set the Pace for Leading Change

Eighteen months ago, Brandin Melton and family moved from Missouri to Portland, OR to start pastoring 110-year-old Portland First Church of the Nazarene. The church had been 1,000 members strong in the 1980’s and dealing with decades of decline when he arrived.

We encounter a lot of churches in decline in the work we do.

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By | October 25th, 2016|Consulting, Leadership|0 Comments

This Church Was Spinning Its Wheels. Today, It’s Healthier Than Ever.

We are encouraged and excited by church stories like this one Mike Moore, pastor of City Church Albany in New York, recently shared with us. Mike and his family moved from Texas to New York eight years ago; a few years later God called them to plant a church.

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By | October 4th, 2016|Consulting|0 Comments

Hope and The Unstuck Way

We help churches get unstuck. If you’ve been following us for any length of time, you know we do that through church consulting and leadership coaching experiences that help you focus your vision, strategies and action.

We believe we have a unique approach to how we serve churches, and we’ve been trying to capture it. Here’s the list we came up with. (And because we really like our over-sized note pads and Sharpies, we made a chart.)

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By | July 30th, 2016|Consulting|2 Comments

How Christ the King Lutheran Church Prepared Its Team for Strategic Planning

Are you ready to take your church leadership team through a strategic planning process?

Having made the decision to invest time and energy into aligning your team, you have an incredible opportunity to set the tone for the experience — and even to determine how effective it will be.

We recently led Christ the King Lutheran Church in Fallbrook, California in our strategic planning process, and we were impressed by the way lead pastor Mark Johnson prepared his team.

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By | June 29th, 2016|Consulting, Strategy|0 Comments

Church Revitalization: This Indiana Wesleyan District Has a Method

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Church revitalization is a major focus right now for many of the largest denominations in our country. Thom Rainer has recently said more than 300,000 American churches are in need of significant revitalization. In our conversations with denominational leaders, we’ve found many have personnel and resources dedicated to this effort, and yet, still often feel stuck in regards to method. 

How exactly do we revitalize these churches?

I recently caught up with Dr. Aron Willis, superintendent of the Indiana North District of The Wesleyan Church to discuss his perspective on this task. This year, Dr. Willis collaborated with The Unstuck Group to create a strategic planning and health assessment experience for 10 churches in his district. They made a plan to invest in the group experience, with each church receiving individual consulting services and then coming together for periodic gatherings to share and learn together.

The Indiana North district is strategically tackling church revitalization. We thought you might enjoy hearing about their approach.

TIFFANY: How long have you been serving as superintendent of the Indiana North District?

ARON: I have served in this position for nearly 10 years. Previously, I served for 32 years as a lead pastor in multiple staff appointments.

TIFFANY: What led you to invest in The Unstuck Group’s process for the churches in your district?

ARON: Much of my time, as a church overseer, is spent providing “intravenous” care for dying churches or intervening in declining churches with limited results. When I became aware of The Unstuck Group’s process for helping missionally minded churches become more effective, it just made good investment sense from a standpoint of time and economics. 

TIFFANY: What stories can you share of positive outcomes so far?

ARON: Many stories, but the best ones have a common denominator. It doesn’t take much to motivate a pastor and staff who are passionate about the mission of the church. The great wins we are experiencing involve a tremendous synergy that is developing in getting lay leaders on a renewed, intentional, missional journey with the ministry staff. This has been huge for our pastors and churches.

Church revitalization begins with the pastor. Declining churches can be turned around but only if the pastor is passionate about the mission of the church and is willing to pay the cost of revitalization.

TIFFANY: How has the group experience been valuable for your churches vs. just having them participate individually?

ARON: Invaluable! When missionally like-minded pastors are invited into a process that is non-competitive but collaborative, the discoveries and innovation from “iron sharpening iron” experiences are remarkable. We are finding that learning in community proves the axiom that we can’t get unstuck to go to greater levels of effectiveness unless we are willing to travel with others.

TIFFANY: What advice would you have for others in your role who are tasked with or burdened for church revitalization?

ARON: Church revitalization begins with the pastor. Declining churches can be turned around but only if the pastor is passionate about the mission of the church and is willing to pay the cost of revitalization.

TIFFANY: What have you learned through the process that you’d want other district leaders to know?

ARON: We can’t give up the hope of renewal for failing pastors and dying churches. The best returns however will come from pastors and churches who “get” what the church is about, who want more, and are willing to pursue it with others like themselves.

By | November 7th, 2015|Consulting|0 Comments