Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Utilizing life coaching to transform aspiring leaders in small urban churches, directing them towards ministry impact in needy communities in the Greater Cleveland area
by Morrison, Ronald J., D.Min., Nyack College, Alliance Theological Seminary, 2014, 153; 3629067
Abstract (Summary)

This project evaluates the effectiveness of life coaching and seeks to prove that coaching can be a better method of producing disciples who fulfill their ministry purposes than the methods currently being employed in small churches in the urban areas of Greater Cleveland. Specifically, this project will address three separate hypotheses that are all related to demonstrating the importance of the coaching ministry at Hope Alliance Bible Church (HABC). Hypothesis 1: The HABC coaching program will be successful in enabling spiritual transformation to occur within the eight participants. Hypothesis 2: The HABC coaching program will be successful in increasing church ministry training and/or church ministry participation for the eight participants. Hypothesis 3: The HABC coaching program will be successful in increasing participation in activities that connect with the community around HABC for the eight participants.

Chapter 1 gives the rationale for the researcher's interest in discovering how to best incorporate a coaching paradigm into the ministry environment of small urban churches. Examples from Scripture are given to support the importance of coaching in the process of bringing disciples to maturity and preparing them for ministry. Proof is given to show why the church should be involved in bringing positive change to the community.

Chapter 2 provides the literature review of the resources used in or relative to the study, and insights from previous research related to the subject of life coaching for urban leaders. The researcher presents a wide-array of excellent resources from accomplished practitioners in the areas of coaching, urban ministry, discipleship, and leadership development. Leaders who desire to become change agents in the church and community will need to stay abreast of current best practices in all of these areas, and the books and articles mentioned will prove to be of great assistance for growing leaders.

Chapter 3 is the record of the procedures and research methods used in this study.

A summary timeline is given to provide an overview of how the research was conducted from start to finish. Information is given to show how the participants were selected, and general information about each of them is also revealed. The topics of discussion are presented in chapter three, along with how they related to the objectives of the coaching sessions. A general description of how the sessions were conducted is also included, along with the assessment criteria from each session and why there were deemed significant in the outcomes of the three hypotheses. Individual and corporate coaching sessions were held twice monthly, using topics that would help the participants discover God's will and follow through on a life plan to fulfill the God-given purpose for their lives.

Chapter 4 provides the findings and results of the study, showing the hypotheses, accumulated data, and responses of the participants involved in the project. The objectives met by each participant are presented, how meeting those objectives contributed to the increased level of participation in the areas related to the three hypotheses, and how coaching was instrumental in those achievements. The data provides a record of the progress made by each participant. Evaluations were based upon the steps taken to continue spiritual growth, preparation for ministry, and involvement in ministry outside of the church.

Chapter 5 provides the Conclusions and Research Implications of this project. Results are given and conclusions drawn that show the value of performing life coaching for aspiring leaders in small urban churches. The coach compared the pre-assessment data with the post-assessment data, and the participants performed a self-evaluation at the end of the pilot period. Based upon the data, conclusions are given as to why the coaching program had low, medium, or high levels of effectiveness in the areas of spiritual transformation, church ministry involvement, and activities that connect with the community. Conclusive reasons are given to show why further research should be done in this area, using variables such as accumulating data from a longer period of time, coaching preachers only, and allowing the community to assess whether or not the church is making a difference in their lives.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Chan, Frank, Sanders, Martin
Commitee: Chan, Frank, King, Paul, Rivera, Orlando, Sanders, Martin
School: Nyack College, Alliance Theological Seminary
Department: Christian Leadership
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-A 75/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Pastoral Counseling, Religious education, Public policy
Keywords: Church leadership, Life coaching, Ministry, Ohio, Urban community, Urban ministry
Publication Number: 3629067
ISBN: 978-1-321-05729-4
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