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The 5 Most Common Core Issues Churches Face Today

When The Unstuck Group works with a church on strategic planning using the StratOp process, the church ultimately discovers several “core issues” they believe are the most important things holding them back from being the church God has called them to be. After identifying those areas, they can make plans that will actually move them forward.

We’ve worked with a lot of churches in the last couple of years, and we started seeing some trends in the core issues that kept coming up. So, we conducted a small research project to identify the top five most common core issues of the churches we’ve worked with in the last year.

Here they are:

1) Spiritual Formation – We are noticing churches are having difficulty creating a solid and simple discipleship strategy to help regular attenders, as well as newcomers, take next steps in their walk with Christ. This issue was identified by more churches than any other issue. Based on Jesus’ commission to His followers when He left earth, we think this is a big problem.

2) Communications – As we work with churches, we’ve noticed it is rare to see a professional, relevant communications strategy. This brings clarity internally as to what people should do and what a church is all about. To a new person, clear communications define a church’s mission and vision. Excellent internal communications is also lacking: We’ve seen churches with vision, passion and solid leaders crippled by poor communication.

3) Mission/Vision – Churches are really struggling to reach a decision on the roadmap for where they are going and how they will accomplish their vision. A lot are simply leaning on the vision of a larger, “successful” church they follow. 

4) Small Groups – Our metrics indicate that churches are having a difficult time engaging people beyond weekend services. Finding qualified small group leaders can be challenging; seeing people get connected seems to be even a greater hurdle.

5) Leadership Development – In many churches, there has never been a priority placed on leadership development. For churches to continue growing, this area cannot be overlooked. Senior Leadership teams rarely have a person with the specific role of championing leadership development. Breakdowns happen when this is treated like a program instead of a foundational aspect to the growth and health of a church.

Over the next several weeks we will be sharing video interviews from the team with insights about these five core issues and ways churches can tackle them.

Tony is founder and chief strategic officer of The Unstuck Group, a company that helps churches get unstuck through consulting and coaching experiences designed to focus vision, strategy and action. For 14 years, Tony served on the senior leadership teams at West Ridge Church in Dallas, Georgia, NewSpring Church in South Carolina, and Granger Community Church in Indiana. He’s written several books, as well as articles that have been featured with the Willow Creek Association, Catalyst and Pastors.com. He writes about leadership regularly at tonymorganlive.com. His next book, The Unstuck Church: Equipping Churches to Experience Sustained Health, now available from Thomas Nelson.

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Tony is founder and chief strategic officer of The Unstuck Group, a company that helps churches get unstuck through consulting and coaching experiences designed to focus vision, strategy and action. For 14 years, Tony served on the senior leadership teams at West Ridge Church in Dallas, Georgia, NewSpring Church in South Carolina, and Granger Community Church in Indiana. He’s written several books, as well as articles that have been featured with the Willow Creek Association, Catalyst and Pastors.com. He writes about leadership regularly at tonymorganlive.com. His next book, The Unstuck Church: Equipping Churches to Experience Sustained Health, will be available from Thomas Nelson in May 2017.

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