If you go on line and look at scores of church of Christ websites, you can quickly learn about each congregation.   Some are small and very traditional.   Some are a bit more progressive.   And, then, some are ‘over the top.’

My main concerns are their ministries and their mission statements.  I want to know if they are going anywhere; if they have any goals.   I have been pleasantly surprised that many have mission statements and congregational focuses.   However, I wonder how many of these mission statements are taken seriously by the membership of the church.   Churches need biblical mission statements and they need to train and equip the membership to fulfill those mission statements.

I suggest 3 things:

  1.  Create a congregational mission statement that causes numerical and spiritual growth.   We could debate if a church should have mission and vision statements.   I am going to strongly suggest that the church does in fact have a mission statement, and it’s found in Matthew 28:19-20.   This mission statement promotes numerical and spiritual growth—and that’s because Jesus wants both.   This biblical mission statement also promotes making disciples.   All your ministries SHOULD BE contributing to the fulfillment of this mission.     And, the way to accomplish this starts with something very simple.
  2. Get a list of all your congregation’s ministries.  Do any of them have their own mission statements?    In other words, do any of your church’s ministries have a statement telling why the ministries exist?   If the answer is “No,” all the involvement and money in the world could never help your church grow.   You are merely going through the motions of ministry because you have no goals for them.   Working in those ministries may even be pleasant and somewhat rewarding.  However, ministries should be contributing the numerical and spiritual growth of the local church.
  3.   Word or reword the mission statements of each of your ministries AND include words that will make the ministry fulfill your congregational mission statement of making disciples and causing numerical and spiritual growth.    Let me illustrate:   

The church’s mission statement:   To make and mature disciples of Christ.

A specific ministry’s mission statement:

          The ministry:   church education

          The church education ministry mission statement:   The education ministry exists to convert the lost and make mature fruitful disciples.

         The church education vision statement:   we will provide interesting relevant biblical classes suited for non-Christians and all Christians that will promote discipleship.   We will use strong growing teachers and excellent materials that promote such.  We will frequently consult with experts in the areas of numerical and spiritual growth and constantly evaluate our effectiveness.  

Note:  I know this sounds a bit lengthy.   However, when the church’s education ministry follows these mission and vision statements, the church will grow both numerically and spiritually.   All members involved in such ministries will more likely to be excited about their ministries.

My personal experience is that most churches do not have a mission statement for any of their ministries much less one for the church education ministry.

All of your ministries, according to the congregational mission statement above, should have ministry mission statements and vision statements that have them geared for numerical and spiritual growth and will promote such and cause such.

If this is still unclear to you, please contact me and I will be happy to go over this again with you.

Travis Irwin, involvement coach

423 920 3060


Retreats, Workshops & Residencies are available