A practical study of the elements that are required for church leaders to lead the church revitalization process effectively. This will include the guiding values, leadership structure, facility assessment, location, and overall feasibility of the church revitalization. The historical foundations of church revitalization in the 20th century will be examined.
For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.
The mission of revitalizing local churches requires the most robust leadership skills, competencies, and attitudes. In addition to the biblical requirements for the office of pastor, the revitalizer must hold or acquire the critical skills necessary to lay out a strategic plan for a fresh vision with new short and long term goals. He must lead the congregation toward a more faithful reflection of the church which God has called them to be in order to reach the lost in their immediate community, and make disciples to carry that message around the world.
Measurable Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Develop guiding values that are an accurate biblical reflection of the mission of the church and the Gospel.
- Understand how the historical foundations of church revitalization in the 20th century provide keys for leading churches through the revitalization process today.
- Produce a comprehensive feasibility report to determine the wisest pathway in church revitalization.
- Understand how to network with key community leaders and ministries to further the church revitalization initiative.
- Create a church revitalization plan to be implemented in his/her community as a reproducible model.
Course Requirements Checklist
After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview.
Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to provide a thread in response to the provided prompt for each forum. Each thread must be 400 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to 2 other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be 200 words. Any sources must be cited in current Turabian format.
Book Critique Assignments
The student will write 2 book reviews on the books listed below. Please review the Book Critique Assignment Instructions. The student will also prepare a 750–1000-word book critique for each of the following texts.
- UnChristian: What a New Generation Really Thinks about Christianity…and Why It Matters
- There’s Hope for Your Church: First Steps to Restoring Health and Growth
Annotated Bibliography Assignment
The student is required to submit a 3,000-word bibliography sketch in preparation for the “Church Revitalization Strategic Plan.” This sketch will include an anticipated thesis statement and a bibliography of at least 20 related works. This bibliography sketch must contain at least 5 books and 5 articles related directly to the anticipated thesis, and may contain no more than 5 Internet sources. Any website used must have a direct, unique, and relevant bearing on the specific paper or research and how it will be utilized. This assignment is designed to support the DMIN Project. The student will prepare an initial investigation into the biblical/theological foundations for a topic related to the leadership aspects of his or her own research interests and produce a plan for conducting a thorough biblical/theological analysis of the topic. Some things that will need be considered in the plan:
- Biblical texts that appear to have special relevance to the topic.
- Theological issues that should figure prominently in an analysis.
- Historical and contemporary exegetical and theological resources that have special relevance to the topic.
Note: The student must approach this assignment as preparation for his/her DMIN project. This assignment will provide a “practice run” at the task of laying a biblical/theological foundation for a research project. It will also provide the opportunity to identify the most relevant sources for strategic leadership and church revitalization. This assignment will include extensive bibliographical material (with annotations demonstrating how the resources are likely to be important to the student’s topic). The paper will be evaluated stringently, so the student must ensure that his/her Annotated Bibliography is well prepared, as it will be needed to successfully write this portion. As always, the paper must be edited for grammar and sentence structure. The writing must be concise and the argument must be thorough. The student must display critical analysis and interaction between writers—avoid an “encyclopedic” listing in the writing.
Church Revitalization Strategic Plan Assignment
The student will submit a 4,000–5,000-word paper providing a comprehensive revitalization strategy for a local church. The paper must include:
- Introduction: This must explain the historical background of the church as extensively as necessary to accurately reflect the church’s current state. Historical statistics, leadership structure, programming approaches, and overall culture of the church should be addressed.
- Guiding Values: Provide an accurate biblical theology for church revitalization that serves as the basis for any efforts to bring revitalization to a local church. Be as comprehensive as possible to address the church, governance, mission, and vision.
- Strategy: This will be the most comprehensive section and should provide a clear pathway for your revitalization strategy. Address every aspect that will be involved in the strategy. Determine a reasonable but urgent timeline and provide details that coincide with the timeline.
- Evaluation: How will you know when you have accomplished the goal? Provide a process of immediate and on-going evaluation. Who? How? When? What tools will you use?
- Reflection: Based on what you have learned through this project, will you seek to execute this strategy? Explain the opportunities that are open to this strategy or the obstacles that contest this strategy and what is your plan to lead the church to this critical point of change?
Reflection on Course Assignment
The student will write a 1,000–1,200-word reflection essay in current Turabian format. The essay will answer the question “How has this course shaped your thinking in the following areas related to strategic leadership for church revitalization: 1) biblical foundations for church revitalization, 2) balancing the past and the future, and 3) the urgency of church revitalization?”