Farming Church: Cultivating Adaptive Change In Congregations, A New Book From Mark Tidsworth And Pinnacle Leadership Press

What readers will find in Farming Church:

The Readiness Indicator 
The RI is an inventory which results in your Readiness Score. This score indicates the level of readiness for adaptive change in your congregation. The RI is normed on the Seven Key Cultivations for Farming Church. One inventory is included in each book.

Four Key Concepts of Adaptive Change Theory
Like few other change theories, Adaptive Change provides concepts and activities which facilitate deep levels of change for organizations who find their context is shifting. Farming Church describes four AC concepts which help us ready the congregational growing environment for Adaptive Change.

Seven Key Cultivations 
When congregational leaders practice these seven cultivations, the interaction between them cultivates the congregation toward readiness. The energy and openness resulting from this approach to leadership positions the congregation for engaging the changes needed to flourish.

The Farming Church Ministry Plan 
Based on a congregation’s scores from the Readiness Indicator, along with the Seven Key Cultivations, this plan provides a guide for cultivating adaptive change.

Thank you to clergy and congregations who are using Shift: Three Big Moves For The 21st Century Church to guide their progress toward living out their callings. Since its publication, the ensuing conversations have been fascinating. Many readily engage these shifts, using the content to move forward with direction and purpose. On the other hand, some clergy, church staff and congregational leaders have said, “I wish we were ready to shift, but we just aren’t there.” Continuing the conversation, it’s become clear more cultivation work needs doing, increasing the readiness quotient for churches before they can adapt. For congregations who are ambivalent and hesitant around change (most), Farming Church is a fitting next step. Farming Church actually serves as a Prequel to Shift, guiding the cultivation work needed in order to engage adaptive change.

The purpose of Farming Church is to guide congregational leaders toward increasing readiness for change in their congregations. Over time, we’ve watched denominations and organizations roll out plans and programs promising congregational transformation. Unfortunately, so many of these fail due to the lack of preparation work before the new approach was introduced. Another way to say this is that when congregations are not sufficiently ready, their receptors remain closed when they are asked to receive new approaches. In fact, 75% of the work involved in leading adaptive change takes place before the change itself is ever engages. Conversely, the greatest factor in adaptive failure is a lack of readiness in the congregational growing environment. We must be in a state of readiness in order to productively engage the mission-congruent changes before us (eyes to see and ears to hear).

This is why I’ve written Farming Church. With the time I have on this planet, I want to contribute to this Christian Movement in helpful, robust ways. No longer can we tinker with church, living as if being the church is a low-level, low-engagement endeavor. This world desperately needs God and God’s Church. I want to be part of God’s ongoing movement; God’s world reclamation project (kingdom of God). So, let’s partner together, applying our best leadership efforts to the calling before us, participating vigorously in Christ’s kingdom.
Learning Opportunities – In addition to reading Farming Church, we provide learning opportunities with this content. The following are some events which have occurred already and are scheduled. Contact us soon to schedule an event with your denomination or congregation.

July 12-13, The Academy For Faith And Leadership, Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary, Columbia, SC

September 5-7, The Bishop’s School of Ministry, United Methodist Conference of South Carolina, Myrtle Beach, SC

February 23-24, 2018, Leadership Days, The Moravian Church In America, Winston-Salem, NC

Find Farming Church: Cultivating Adaptive Change In Congregations from Pinnacle Leadership Press on Amazon.
Mark Tidsworth