Doctoral Project Abstract
A Leadership Development Program: Developing Servant Leaders from a Trinitarian Perspective
Brenda J. Williams
The proposed leadership development program results from the ambitions of the pastoral team of New Creation Community Church (N3C), an affiliate congregation of Worldwide Church of God (WCG), to realign traditional leadership practices of ministry leaders with relational values consistent with Trinitarian theology. The influence of legalism as a former doctrine contributes to decisions by the pastoral team to educate ministry leaders in the practices of shared leadership. Therefore, the leadership development program proposes servant leadership (Greenleaf, 1977), a shared leadership model in which leaders ‘serve first, then lead’, as the approach to develop ministry leaders in this direction.
The program proposes to facilitate a learning opportunity for ministry leaders to accomplish the following objectives:
- Examine the influence of religious traditions embedded in the history of N3C and other personal, social, and cultural influences that contribute to shaping leadership development.
- Exhibit openness to support others taking on leadership roles and show willingness to participate as a follower consistent with the ethics of servant leaders.
- Develop a plan to transform the unique spiritual gifts and talents into action that contributes to building community within N3C and beyond.
The program objectives address areas of need identified by the pastor. Moreover, to accomplish these objectives, the leadership development program proposes to create a learning experience that transforms ministry leaders spiritually, relationally, experientially, and provides didactic instruction regarding the dynamics of servant leadership. The leadership development program includes content comparing similarities of servant leadership to the relational values of Trinitarian theology and includes individual and group experiential exercises for participants to complete during class or as outside assignments. The program emphasizes the exercise of distinct spiritual gifts given by God for humans to care for one another which parallels the distinctive caring roles that exist between God the Father, Jesus Christ the Son, and the Holy Spirit.