Does Shift Need a Church-Wide Strategy?


As always, Larry Shallenberger has some insightful views. One thing he pointed out as a missing element for Shift:

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“Shift” offers a sustainable model for family ministry, but there were some missing elements in the book:

  • I was disappointed that there was no discussion on how to achieve alignment across departments. Most mid-sized churches and larger are departmentalized into children, youth, and adult ministries and are managed by an executive pastor. “Shift” lacks help on how to bring those departments into alignment so the strategy can occur. Any family ministry model needs pulpit support as well."

My thoughts: True…to a point. I think Brian would agree that the ideal is complete alignment across all the ministries and from the pastor first and foremost. That's what Brian has experienced in his church. However, just as there are non-traditional families that don't fit the ideal, we've found that most churches don't fit the ideal. When we found Brian, we had listened to other strategies that in our opinion don't seem as workable or sustainable because they require an overhaul of existing structures and philosophies. We begged Brian to make Shift a strategy that would work if only one ministry area bought into it. And it does!  We talk to children's ministers who also beg us to not give them a family ministry strategy that requires hiring new staff, adding new programs, or getting complete buy-in. In my opinion, that's what Brian Haynes has done in Shift!

To read Larry's entire review, go to

To buy Shift, go here

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About Author

Christine Yount Jones

Christine has more than 26 years of children’s ministry experience. She is the Executive Editor of Children’s Ministry Magazine, has authored many books and articles on children’s ministry, and serves as Group’s Children’s Ministry Champion. She’s responsible for development and innovation of new resources.

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