The Quest for Church Health

A perfectly healthy church is an ideal that will not be realized this side of heaven. However, a church can choose to participate with God in becoming more whole and complete. Accordingly, no matter where a church is now, that church can make a commitment to allow God to heal it, to love it, and to lead it to becoming more like Jesus.

Family therapists know they cannot help a family if no one in the family is committed to getting well. Likewise, a church will only become healthier if a critical mass of the members is committed to the journey.

Along this journey to deeper health, it may be helpful to have some signposts and markers for what a healthy family looks like, and, correspondingly, this would be true of healthy churches. According to Curran, Traits of a Healthy Family (Minneapolis: Winston Press, 1983; adapted slightly), a healthy family will:

  1. Communicate and listen to each other
  2. Affirm and support one another
  3. Teach respect for others
  4. Develop trust
  5. Have a sense of play and humor
  6. Exhibit a sense of shared responsibility
  7. Value a sense of right and wrong
  8. Have a strong sense of “family”
  9. Have a balance of interaction among the members
  10. Have a shared religious/spiritual core
  11. Will respect the privacy of one another
  12. Foster family table time and conversation
  13. Share leisure time together
  14. Admit to and seek help with problems

While no church is perfect, any church family can become better at expressing the above values. However, this will require intentionality and effort from everyone.

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4 thoughts on “The Quest for Church Health”

  1. Hi Stan. I like what you have to say here. Did I mention that you are doing a great job!! It is hard to find all of these things at one church, but I think it would be a constant strive for all of them that would make it successful. Hope you have a Happy Birthday!
    Carrie Brown

  2. Hello Birthday Boy, I enjoyed your article on Church Health. I think you are absolutely right when you said a healthy church is an ideal not a reality. I do think that Carrollton is as close as I will ever get to being part of a completely Healthy Church. We have gone through a lot of changes and growing pains since Katrina. I am blessed to have been a part of it all.

    I hope everything is going good for you. I know you have a lot on your plate with everything that has been happening with your new Church family. Remember to be patient & God will work it all out. You & your family are in my prayers.

    Ray

    P.S.
    I have enjoyed reading Stan’s WebLog.

    1. Ray, Thanks for the encouragement. I’m glad to have had been a part of the Carrollton story and I know that it must have been quite a story since Katrina. I saw some amazing things while I was at Carrollton and I was forever changed by my time with that church.

      Keep us in your prayers; and as you know, we have been through tough before and God has always delivered us and transformed us in the process.

      God bless and thanks for reading along.

      Stan

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