Churches, Cultures & Leadership


Haah Video: Leader as Learner

In the midst of intercultural life, Pastor Kevin Haah admits that he, like anyone, has ethnocentric tendencies that are potentially hurtful to others.  He discusses that through a posture of humility and attentiveness, a leader can learn from mistakes and help with healing.  As a leader he can help shape the church’s environment so that God’s transforming grace is engaged. How does this process unfold? → On p 206, Branson discusses topics that require special attention as one develops intercultural communicative competencies. First among a list of six topics is oneself.  The leader can ask questions like, “What are the cultural patterns you bring to the conversation?” Or, “Do you understand how you communicate respect or disrespect?” This is related to the practice of “getting on the balcony” (p 215) in order to see how we affect others in our ongoing interactions. The leader’s reflections are important steps in developing intercultural communication skills. Read through the six topics on pp 206-208 and begin to imagine how you might engage with your own ethnocentric communication tendencies.  Discuss what you are thinking with others.

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By engaging ethnic histories and hearing personal autobiographies we are participating in God's creative work of shaping and reshaping church life and mission.

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Part I: Theology and Context

Using the frameworks of practical theology and missional ecclesiology, we provide an introduction to the work of leadership and to social theory, including matters of social contexts, cultural variables, and ethnic identity.

Part II: Sociocultural Perspectives

Cultural anthropology provides insights into social power and human dynamics that vary among cultures. Topics include worldviews, relationships, identity, language, and perception and thinking.

Part III: Leadership, Communication and Change

We need to develop the skills and capacities for communication and leadership in intercultural settings in order to engage the challenges of church life and mission in multicultural contexts.


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