Thursday, December 10, 2015

Church consulting and workshops

As many of my readers know, I will retire at the end of this month from my position as a Resource Minister with the American Baptist Churches of Indiana and Kentucky. It has been my privilege to work in this capacity since 2001, but I've decided it's time to retire. However, that doesn't mean I'm going to sit around the house eating bon-bons and watching soap operas all day.

I currently have four speaking engagements lined up for 2016. In February I will be in southern California leading a two-day conference. In March I'm doing a keynote speech at a bivocational conference in Indiana, and in July and August I will be speaking at two events in Kentucky.

These speaking opportunities are something I enjoy doing, but in the past I've had to limit the number I could do due to my regular ministry. I am very excited to have these four already lined up, and I am hopeful other opportunities will develop. Each of the conferences I do are available in a full-day or half-day format and also as a one-hour workshop or keynote. Obviously, the full-day format provides the most information and is the one most often requested. The titles of these conferences I currently offer are:

  • The Healthy Small Church (This is the most requested.)
  • Transforming the Small Church from Maintenance-Minded to Missional
  • Easing the Pressures of Ministry
  • Bivocational Ministry for the 21st Century
I have also developed specific training that addressed various needs for different denominational groups. Each of these special presentations were focused on smaller churches and/or their leaders.

If this is something your denomination or judicatory would like to consider offering your small church leaders, please feel free to contact me. Pastors and lay leaders who might be reading this, pass this information on to your denominational leadership and ask them to consider providing this training to your churches and pastors.

Also, I am now available to coach individual pastors or churches. One church has recently talked to me about leading them through a visioning process. Their church has struggled in recent years, and when I asked, the leadership admitted the church had no unifying vision. They became interested as I described the process I use to help a church through a vision discernment process.

This is a process I've used with other churches that was very helpful to them. Recently, a church invited me to lead them through the process as they were preparing to call a new minister. As I explained to them, how do they know what they need in a new pastor if they don't know where God is wanting to lead them in the next few years? Other churches have found this process helpful as they were struggling with conflict. (Conflict is nothing more than two or more visions competing for the same space.) A church without a common, unifying vision is likely to experience conflict as competing visions begin to bump into one another.

If you would like to know more about this process to see if this is something that would benefit your church, contact me. I'll be glad to explain the process to you and help you determine if this could be a positive next step for your church.

I'm looking forward to retirement, but I'm also looking forward to working with churches in new ways to help them live into the vision God has for them. I want to continue to encourage and resource small and bivocational churches and those who lead them. God has given me 35+ years of experience working with churches, and it's my prayer that I will have opportunities to share some of what I've learned with others.


Rev. Luckett said...

HI Dennis, can you provide information for the Indiana confernce? (registration info, dates and times?) Thanks

Dennis Bickers said...

The organization hosting this event has not begun advertising it so I do not have the registration info, etc. As soon as that is available, I will post it on this blog. Thanks for your interest.