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While some of these conflicts last for a short time, others last for long periods, and could affect the management and running of the church. Discussing conflict…
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CONFLICT MANAGEMENT IN THE CHURCH Conflict Management In The Church More often than not, conflicts happen in the church between the church members or the leaders of the church. While some of these conflicts last for a short time, others last for long periods, and could affect the management and running of the church. Discussing conflict management in the church, this presentation focuses on the stages of conflict development, ways of managing conflict in the church and sources of conflict in the church.
Sources of conflict in the church
There are various sources of conflict in the church. While some of these sources could appear as being too insignificant and as such cannot cause conflict, in most cases, disregarding these sources creates bigger conflicts that could even contribute to bother breakup of the church. Although the church embraces morals in its operations, understanding the differences in the backgrounds of the members and leaders is important in dealing with conflict whenever they arise.
Church attendance is one of the most important sources of conflict in the church. An increase and a decrease in people’s attendance in the church both have similar effects. They have a high likelihood of creating conflicts. While an increase in the number of people in the church raises an alarm to individuals holding leadership positions in the church, as they risk competition, a decrease in the attendance levels is an indication of poor leadership skills among the leaders (Turner 1991, p. 6). This could thus lead to a conflict between the members of the church and their leaders. Annual budget is yet another source of conflict in a church. Some of the people could have diverse views especially in the allocation of the total income of the church. Money, now more than ever, is a highly sensitive issue in the church. Budgeting should receive the approval of most of the members of the church, if not all (Spann & Wheeler 2010, p. 241). Time changes for the leaders especially in addressing the members of the church is an important consideration too. Some of the leaders feel superior to others and thus regard them as coming later in the protocol. Time allocated to the leaders of the church to address the members of the church could also be a good breeding ground for church conflicts. When new influential people join the church, conflict is bound to arise. In most cases, these new people appear to receive more attention than the leaders of the church, something that would not go well with the leaders. Finally, the fear of the organization being out of control could be a source of conflict as the members deliberate on the leaders with little contribution to the success of the church.
Styles in managing conflicts in the church
The church is a highly respected place. The fact that people attend church to receive training on how to live with other people makes it an important place. As such, people in a church are highly disciplined, and pay attention to the leaders. Whenever there is an issue affecting the members of the church, solving the problem in most cases does not suffer from many complications (Everist 2004, p. 12).
Creatively, points out Anyanwu (2009, p. 12) the church should seek means of avoiding any form of tension at all costs is very important. It is possible to detect tension forces among the members of the church. The best way of dealing with this problem is ensuring that whenever the church any kind of tension, it solves the issue before it worsens. Accommodating each other is yet another way of solving these conflicts Halverstadt (1991, p. 8). By accommodating, one buys the ideas and opinions of other people in order to end any form of conflict. Through collaborating, members of the church work together to solve any issue affecting the church (Isaak 2012, p. 462). Teaching on good communication and proper listening skills among members of the church is an important element of solving conflicts in the church. Good communications skills ensure that people raise their views and that the rest of the members of the church pay attention and as such come up with debates on the opinions in order to establish a solution.
Although churches are highly respected institutions in the society, and that people expect them to be the best-managed organizations, there are bound to be various conflicts arsing among the members of the church. Failure to address these issues in time could be a breeding ground for worse problems. While the source of conflict in a church could appear rather negligible, the conflict could lead to other conflicts, which could have adverse effects in the running and survival of the church.
Works Cited
Anyanwu, C. N 2009, Creative strategies for conflict management & community building. [S.l.], Authorhouse.
Arnold, R, & Anderson, C 2013, Social Identity, Conflict Management, Religion and a Building: Peaks and Valleys in the Life of a Large Christian Church, South Asian Journal Of Business & Management Cases, 2, 2, pp. 245-252, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost, viewed 3 February 2014.
Everist, N. C 2004, Church conflict: from contention to collaboration. Nashville, TN, Abingdon Press.
Halverstadt, H. F 1991, Managing church conflict. Louisville, Ky, Westminster/John Knox Press.
Isaak, P 2012, Picking Up the Pieces: The Church and Conflict Resolution in South Africa and Rwanda - By Samuel Cyuma,International Review Of Mission, 101, 2, pp. 461-463, Academic Search Premier, EBSCOhost, viewed 3 February 2014.
Spann, K., & Wheeler, D 2010, Nelsons church leaders manual for congregational care. Nashville, Thomas Nelson.
Turner, E 1991, A tough source of conflict seen in the 7th Assembly of the World Council of Churches, Network News, 11, 3, p. 6, Academic Search Premier, EBSCOhost, viewed 3 February 2014. Read More
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