CHURCH DIAGNOSTICS, EASUM and BANDY
Part of the Ministry Resource Guide on Strategies for Congregational Renewal: Diagnostic/Prescriptive
Example of Diagnostic/Prescriptive: Easum and Bandy’s Eleven Subsystems of a Thriving Congregation
- The Eleven Key Subystems
- Assessments for each of the eleven key subsystems
- Leadership belief systems and structures for the eleven key subsystems
- Related Areas
Bill Easum and Thom Bandy champion the idea of creating permission-giving, servant empowering congregational cultures that equip members to freely and responsibly exercise their gifts toward fulfilling Christ-honoring mission in the new pre-Christian era.
The Easum/Bandy philosophy is popular among church leaders, especially those who follow a Church Growth philosophy. Regardless of one’s orientation, their works have value, but the relationship between each volume can get confusing. This section tries to show how each book fits within the Easum-Bandy system.
The Eleven Key Subystems
William M. Easum and Thomas G. Bandy, Growing Spiritual Redwoods – addresses Easum and Bandy’s three foundational subsystems: congregational identity, mission, and organization. This book also presents a portrait of what a church may look like when it has truly broken out of institutionalization.
Thomas G. Bandy, Kicking Habits: Welcome Relief for Addicted Churches, Upgrade Edition – Provides the “big picture” of Easum and Bandy’s five stages of congregational renewal and transformation: shared vision, congregational spirituality, redefining leadership roles, streamlining the organization, birthing the new system. The companion volume is Coming Clean: The Study Guide to Kicking Habits.
This includes: congregational property, funding, and communication. No one volume is dedicated to these three subsystems, but questions for evaluating them appear in Moving Off the Map,and a shortened version, 95 Questions to Shape the Future of the Church.
Assessments for each of the eleven key subsystems
- Thomas G. Bandy, Moving Off the Map: A Field Guide to Changing the Congregation – An extensive 280-Question Congregational Mission Assessment that is central to the development of the Easum-Bandy model of thriving churches. It also explains how the Easum-Bandy model of “strategic mapping” differs from standard church-growth and strategic planning.
- Thomas G. Bandy, 95 Questions to Shape the Future of the Church – A more recent volume, seemingly an updated, 95-question version of the 280-Question assessment in Moving Off the Map. The two volumes supplement each other.
Leadership belief systems and structures for the eleven key subsystems
Easum and Bandy are strong on the idea that a congregation’s leadership belief systems and structures must be empowering and permission-giving. Each has written extensively on this.
- Thomas G. Bandy, Spirited Leadership: Empowering People to do What Really Matters — Provides an excellent philosophical description of empowerment, the “big picture.” Addressed to all leaders, not limited to churches. Also links to Thomas G. Bandy, Christian Chaos: Revolutionizing the Congregation — A more step-by-step guidebook that translates the principles of empowerment into congregational life.
- Bill Easum, Unfreezing Moves: Following Jesus into the Mission Field — An excellent contrast between top-down, command-and-control, stifling leadership that inhibits missional movement and bottom-up, out-of-control, permission-giving innovation that encourages missional movement.
- Bill Easum, Sacred Cows Make Gourmet Burgers: Ministry Anytime, Anywhere, By Anyone — This was Easum’s first attempt at describing empowerment. It contains some unique pieces such as a section that contrasts empowering leaders with 10 other leader types.
See Other Resources on Church Leadership and Renewal:
- Church Leadership and Renewal, Index
- Church Leadership, Theological Foundations, Ecclesiology
- Church Leadership, Philosophical Foundations – e.g. Church Growth, Missional, Emergent, and Other Missionally Responsive Trajectories
- Church Leadership, Practical Foundations – Church Dynamics and Research
- Church Leadership, Practical Foundations – Congregational Culture, Church Identity
- Church Leadership, Practical Foundations – Size Dynamics, Size Transitions
- Church Leadership, Practical Foundations – Research and Case Studies on Effective Churches
- Church Leadership, Special Situations – Small Church Development
- Church Leadership, Strategies for Renewal
See Resources on Related Areas
- Change and Transition
- Church Conflict
- Elders, Church Governance
- Giving and Financial Stewardship
- Involvement, Gift-Based Ministry
- Managing Volunteers
- Ministry Staff, Teams
- Ministry Transitions, Interim
- Missional Perspectives, Intro
- Missional Strategies
- Pastoral Theology
- Social Ministry
- Spiritual Formation
- Theology of Mission and Ministry
See Resources on Over 100 Areas of Ministry Leadership: