The Developmental Response Continuum – Every Congregation’s Journey

Cluster One: Abandonment, Overwhelmed Apathy, Denial, Hyper-Control, Conflict
Cluster Two: Trying Harder, Quality Improvement, Spiritualizing
Cluster Three: Letting Go, Purpose Seeking, Holy Experimenting, Proactive Adaptation

Every Church is on the Developmental Response Continuum somewhere.
When it comes to engaging the shifting world around us, some congregations are simply reacting, living out of Cluster One. Others are somewhat more proactive, responding from Cluster Two. Others are further down the road, moving onto the spiritual invigoration which comes from travelling with God toward a new land, Cluster Three.

Chapter 2 in Shift: Three Big Moves For The 21st Century Church, provides a detailed description of each response, along with a diagram for visualizing these places on the journey.

Since many participants in our Making The Shift Events are asking for this material to share with their larger congregations, we are making Chapter 2 available at no cost, for those who sign-up to receive our e-newsletter. Sign up here:

We hesitated when asked for this content, knowing this continuum makes less sense without the context provided in the book. On the other hand, we listened to those voices saying they would prefer using it imperfectly than not having the option. So, we are glad to provide this chapter to you. May your use of the Developmental Response Continuum contribute to your story of love, grace, and reconciliation as a Faith Community called Church.

Mark Tidsworth