There’s a growing list of related words floating around out there that deserve our attention. It includes discipleship, mentoring, coaching and consulting. The common element among these words is the engagement of outside help in order to grow in ways an individual or local church cannot do alone. We’ll look at each of them separately, beginning here with consulting.
So welcome to the world of church consultation, a growing trend in 21st century Christian ministry. What is church consulting? Simply stated, it is a process in which a local church partners with outside help to address issues and challenges hindering its growth and effectiveness, thereby getting unstuck and charting a new course with fresh energy and vision.
As Will Mancini, founder of Auxano, a leading church consulting firm, says the expertise of his team isn’t in the answers they bring, but rather in their process which initiates conversation, prayer and world-class questions that enables a local church to develop and live its vision. Similarly, Artios Christian College is excited to come alongside local leaders and churches in this way through its Center for Vibrant Leadership. What would be the goal of such consultation and what would the process look like?
In some cases, this will be a one-time on-site or phone or web-based consultation to address a specific issue a local church is facing. In other instances, it will be a long-term engagement. Either way, the goal is to help local churches thrive by achieving health and vibrancy. The long-term process goes beyond addressing those issues identified in an initial interview, to determining the church’s overall health by use of tried and tested assessment tools. Based on the findings, a treatment plan is developed, and a new vision and growth track are formulated.
This isn’t a guaranteed cure-all, but it holds the potential for transformation no local church should be willing to live without. Why be average or mediocre when you can get unstuck and thrive?