THE ROLE OF CHURCH LEADERS IN CHURCH GROWTH: A CASE STUDY OF IKWERRE CENTRAL DISTRICT OF ASSEMBLIES OF GOD CHURCH
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The study was an attempt to examine, understand and describe the role of church leaders in church growth. The study was carried out as a case study of Ikwerre Central District of Assemblies of God Church. The primary focus of the study is to examine the contributions of church leaders to sustainable growths among members of the body of Christ. The study made use of primary data from the information obtained from the distribution of research questionnaire to members of the Church. The study made use of a total population of 100. The sample of 40 was considered for the study, the data obtained was analyzed using simple percentage which hypothesis were tested with the chi-square method. The findings here reveals that leadership’s role in church growth is indispensable as long as the leaders remain committed to their calling. However, it was discovered that the moment the leaders slip into sinful lifestyle, exhibiting bad example or conduct and cease to become available for ministry, church growth is hampered. The study concluded that church leaders must challenge present religious conflicts and leadership structures of faith communities with purpose for growth, change, and survival of the church. The study recommends that church leaders should leads by examples, rather than acting or playing Christianity just to justify righteousness.
1.1 Background of the Study
The Nigerian church today is faced with the challenge of providing evidence of effective leadership with respect to church growth and development of the church. Reflecting on the real situation of the 21st century church and its leadership, it is an undoubted fact that the church has not had appropriate leadership both for the church itself and the world that the church relates to. The primary reason for this phenomenon is the lack of appropriate leadership that fits into the church and the world. Therefore, leadership and its practices are key issues in church growth and impact on the world. Leadership has become one of the primary foci for church growth in these days.1
Church leaders play the leading roles in church development worldwide, in direct response to God’s command to serve the disadvantaged. As globalization increases the competition in ministry, new opportunities and challenges exist for these leaders, who seek to obey through holistic ministry.
1. Christopher Duraisingh, (2010): “From Church-Shaped Mission to Mission-Shaped Church,” Anglican Theological Review, no. 92.
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