Here’s a strategy you can use regardless of the kind of issues you are facing. Read the description below and think through how you could use this kind of strategy in your own ministry.

One church has been in the process of transition. The church is two years old and is losing the lease on the building they are currently meeting in. Many people have been very invested in making services run there and are wondering what this will mean for the future of the church. The leadership council wisely hosted a series of “congregational conversations” after the services. At these conversations, the 100 or so people who were present were seated at tables of eight, each with an assigned “table leader.” Some basic content was given by a leadership council member (lease status, other meeting place options, a reiteration of the definition of “church,” and some general reassurance). Then the tables were given 3 questions to process:

  1. On a scale of 1 to 10, how are you feeling about the move? (1: no big deal, 10: the world is being turned upsidedown)
  2. What are your concerns about moving?
  3. What are some ideas you have that you’d like the leadership council to consider?

The table discussed the questions. The table leader listened and took notes. Responses were compiled and given to the leadership council. The upshot? People felt heard and they felt like their ideas mattered. And they did—the leadership council got some great ideas and some new questions to explore.

Regardless of the type of issue you are facing, you can use a similar strategy. How could this approach be of use in your ministry?