Original Research

A framework for crafting and implementing a congregational strategy in the local congregations of the Reformed Churches of South Africa

Aldeon B. Grobler, J. Louw van der Walt, Barend J. de Klerk
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 46, No 2 | a103 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v46i2.103 | © 2012 Aldeon B. Grobler, J. Louw van der Walt, Barend J. de Klerk | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 16 July 2012 | Published: 12 December 2012

About the author(s)

Aldeon B. Grobler, Potchefstroom Business School, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus, South Africa
J. Louw van der Walt, School of Ecclesiastical Science, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus, South Africa
Barend J. de Klerk, School of Ecclesiastical Science, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus, South Africa


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Abstract

The church is not like any other institution or organisation in society. Although the church is primarily invisible and spiritual, it is a visible organisation in the world, and it spans across borders of nations, languages and countries. John Calvin strongly rejected the notion that the church is only a spiritual organisation of which the visible administrative side is downplayed. The fellowship of the church must not only be seen as a mystical relation with Jesus Christ. During 2010, an empirical study was done on the extent to which congregations of the Reformed Churches of South Africa (RCSA) adhere to the request to have a well-designed congregational strategy. The knowledge gained from a literature study on the science of Strategic Management and the results of the empirical study was combined into a framework for crafting and executing a congregational strategy. This framework can be used by congregational leaders to guide them through their own process of crafting and executing their unique congregational strategy.  The research was concluded with a recommendation that the Theological School of the RCSA should consider including a course on Strategic Management in the training syllabus of aspiring ministers. Considering that Strategic Management is a specialised management science, and external Strategic Management consultants tend to be expensive, the research also recommended that the Administrative Bureau of the RCSA consider employing their own Strategic Management consultant for the RCSA with the specific assignment of assisting and guiding all congregations with their congregational strategy.

’n Raamwerk vir die ontwerp en implementering van ’n gemeentestrategie in die plaaslike gemeentes van die Gereformeerde Kerke in Suid-Afrika. ’n Kerk is ’n unieke organisasie. Die kerk is primêr onsigbaar en geestelik van  aard. Tog  funksioneer dit as ’n instituut in die wêreld en moet dit doelmatig en doeltreffend bestuur word, ten einde alles ordelik te laat verloop en doelgerig te laat funksioneer. Johannes Calvyn het die idee dat ’n gemeente slegs ’n geestelike instelling is, waarvan die sigbare administratiewe deel as onbelangrik afgemaak word, verwerp. ’n Empiriese studie is gedurende 2010 onderneem om vas te stel tot watter mate gemeentestrategieë wel in die Gereformeerde Kerke in Suid-Afrika (GKSA) opgestel en uitgevoer word. Die kennis wat ingewin is met die empiriese studie is gekombineer met ’n literatuurstudie oor die vakgebied van Strategiese Bestuur, en ’n raamwerk vir die ontwerp en implementering van ’n gemeentestrategie is daargestel. Hierdie raamwerk kan deur gemeenteleiers gebruik word in die ontwerp en implementering van hulle gemeente se strategie. Die navorsing sluit af met die aanbeveling dat daar oorweging geskenk moet word om ‘n kursus in strategiese bestuur in die opleidingsillabus van teologiese studente in te sluit. ’n Verdere aanbeveling is gemaak dat, weens die gespesialiseerde aard en koste aan eksterne Strategiese Bestuurskonsultante verbonde, die Administratiewe Buro van die GKSA oorweging behoort te skenk om hulle eie konsultant in diens te neem. Die opdrag moet wees om gemeentes van die GKSA by te staan in die ontwerp en implementering van die gemeentestrategie.

Keywords

Management; Congregation; Church; Minister; Congregational strategy

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