Multiplication Center

Help with a Church Merger?

October 6, 2011

Various people contact our department through research@leadnet.org, and my team fields those replies. Here’s a recent one that I think a lot of people would be interested in:

Q: I was reading a magazine article that quoted you speaking about the growing trend in healthy church mergers. I was looking into the possibility of finding another church to merge with in my area. How should I begin?

A: Here’s the entirety of what I wrote:

First step would be to decide whether your congregation would be the “joining church” or the “lead church.” Either way, praying for guidance at each step, the most typical path is to work through the relationships with other church leaders you know. If you’re in the joining church role, is there a church you admire – one that seems to be a good match in doctrine and approach to ministry, but has a level of growth, vitality and momentum that your church doesn’t. Or if you’re wanting to be the lead church, which means you have a healthy level of growth, vitality and momentum, is there a smaller church whom you have relationship with, and who you could ask, “Is there a way we could help you?” And see where the conversation goes.

If you’re looking down the road a bit, then please buy the first book on church mergers to come off the press, slated for late April 2012: Better Together: Making Church Mergers Work, Jim Tomberlin and Warren Bird, Jossey-Bass, 2012.

May God give you the guidance and wisdom you seek.

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