Doctor of Ministry
Serious conflict in a church can damage its vitality and ministry effectiveness. The problem this research addressed was factors in a church ministry which can allow serious conflict to form and expand. In response to this problem, the researcher examined materials which address church conflict and surveyed sample churches. The research sought to identify the following areas: topics church interventionists consistently address when assisting churches in the recovery process, the primary sources of conflict based upon church experiences, the parallels between the focus of the church interventionists and church experiences, and if serious conflict can be avoided if these areas are proactively addressed. Seven areas were identified as elements common among church interventionists: acceptance of differences, unresolved corporate sin, church structure, ministry focus, leadership, communication, and accountability. A survey was designed and administered to sample churches to determine, based on their experiences with conflict, if there was a correlation between conflict and those seven areas. The survey was also designed to measure relative effectiveness of church ministries in these seven areas. The study did not confirm the research question. The data were inconclusive in establishing a direct relationship between the seven identified areas and the onset of conflict in the churches surveyed. The research did find that the churches surveyed shared some common areas of deficiency. These areas were lack of church administrative structure, avoidance of differences and conflict, absence of intention and relevant ministry focus, and leadership time focused upon ministry details instead of spiritual development and forward thinking.
Doctor of Ministry
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Polley, K. V. (2015). Avoiding Division within a Church: A Proactive Approach for Identifying Sources of Conflict and Creating a Healthy Ministry Environment [Doctoral thesis, Bethel University]. Spark Repository. https://spark.bethel.edu/etd/520