The purpose of this study was to identify the specific interpersonal competencies of a leader as they relate to the motivation of volunteers in church ministry as perceived by volunteers. Eighty-eight persons from four Wesleyan churches in central Indiana were interviewed by telephone. The volunteers' responses were categorized according to behaviors, skills, and characteristics. The specific competencies identified by volunteers were, in rank order: support behavior, interpersonal characteristics, intrapersonal characteristics, communication skills, integrity, spirituality, and the specific leadership skills of supervision, team building, organization, delegation, and recruitment. The research indicated that the most important skills relating to the motivation of volunteers were support believers.
Two descriptive research studies (N=257 and N=229), combined with a review of the literature, address two dimensions of adolescent spirituality: (1) age of conversion (e.g., At what age do most people become Christians" To what extent do males and females differ?) and (2) factors of development (e.g., What are the major influencing factors for spiritual growth in adolescents? To what extent do adolescents differ in spiritual growth when raised in homes where Christian influence is strong, medium, little, or nonexistent?) Implications for parents of youth and youth ministry programs are suggested.
This article is a survey of the field of ethnographic research. Ethnography is defined. A case is made for the importance of using qualitative research methods in Christian ministry. Research concerns are summarized. Criteria are given for the use of ethnographic methods. Examples and applications are made to education, particularly Christian education.
The Philadelphia Sunday and Adult School Union (1817-1824) represents an educational movement that had significant influence on the nature and functions of the American Sunday school. Guided in its early stages by the innovative programming of the Reverend Robert May, a missionary from the London Missionary Society, the Union came to represent the American Sunday school as a vehicle for evangelical Christian education. This is a descriptive and suggestive study that the author hopes will spark renewed interest in the history of the formation of the concept of the Sunday school in the United States.
Walter Scott Athearn, organizer of the School of Religious Education and Social Service at Boston University, was one of the great pioneers of the modern religious education movement. In this article, the author evaluates the life and influence of this remarkable teacher and prophetic leader.
Transformation of character is the goal of the concerned Christian educator. In this article, the author proposes that a major problem in ministry today is the lack of understanding of how to approach people in a way that facilitates learning that results in behavioral change. The author believes that an accurate view of personality and human relationships is essential to the educational process. He suggests that Jesus' holistic view of man's personality and His approach in relating to people in the teaching/learning process provides the key to seeing lives transformed.
This article examines the conflict that frequently exists between the church and the parachurch organization as each attempts to carry out its mission. The reasons behind this tension are examined along with recommendations for how the church and the parachurch organization can work together in a concerted effort.
In designing the educational ministries of the church, consideration must be given for both the content to be taught as well as the means by which the content will be most effectively learned. It is suggested that the cumulative effect of church-wide use of the following three factors could significantly equip and support marital partners and parents to fulfill their biblical roles: (1) seizing teachable moments, (2) modeling biblical norms, and (3) encouraging corrective action when practice departs from these norms.
This article provides an overview of ministry formation in Africa and what should be done to improve the system. Undeniably, the Bible colleges and seminaries of Africa have failed to provide adequate leadership training. This article addresses the criticisms leveled against traditional forms of theological education and outlines the proposed solutions to the problem. Also the author notes the factors which will influence the outcome of this situation.